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If You Love your Valentine, Cook for Them!

By Jodie Parus, RD, LD

Most people will be heading out to a restaurant this Valentine's Day to enjoy some time with the one they love. In fact, over 40% of people plan to go out to dinner and they will spend on average around $150 per couple.

Many restaurants will be offering a prix fixe menu at a premium price. This year, why not stay home and prepare a meal customized to your taste? Better food for less money!

You won't have to wait to be seated, past your reservation time that is, elbow a stranger next to you, or shout to be heard.

A nice steak with a couple of sides may be just the ticket. Or really step it up a notch and go for a combo. Whatever your sweetie likes: Surf and turf, steak and chicken. Keep them in mind when preparing your menu and you can't go wrong.

Feed someone you love something great because you love them! And don't forget the sweets!

Steak with Mushrooms and Shallots              

Sometimes avoiding the Valentine's Day dinner restaurant rush by cooking a meal at home with or for your sweetheart is more romantic then any dinner out. The hard part is finding a dinner option that will please both parties.  This steak filet is sure to please, keeping everyone happy and healthy, full of protein and tasty vegetables.

Prep time: 10 min.

Cook time: 20 min.

Ingredients:Filet and Mushrooms

2 - 6-oz. filet mignon (or your favorite cut)

1/2 tsp sea salt

1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper

2 tbsp olive oil, divided

1 shallot, peeled and sliced

2 tbsp balsamic vinegar

1/2 lb mixed wild mushrooms (e.g., cremini, portobello, oyster and shiitake), cleaned and sliced

1/2 cup dry red wine - merlot or shiraz

1 tbsp oyster sauce

1 tsp chopped fresh parsley


1.  Pat steaks dry. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, then rub with half the olive oil.

2.  Heat a heavy skillet and brush with remaining olive oil. Add steaks and cook to medium rare 5 to 6 minutes per side if steaks are 1½ inches thick. Remove steaks from pan. Return pan to heat.

3.  There should be a little oil left in the pan; if not, add about 1 tsp. Add shallots and cook for about one minute. Add vinegar. Cook, stirring, until vinegar evaporates and shallots begin to brown. Add mushrooms and cook for 2 minutes. Add wine. Cook on medium-high heat, stirring, until about half the wine has evaporated. Add oyster sauce and cook the mixture for a few minutes, until mush-rooms are glazed and there are a few tablespoons of sauce in the pan.

4.  To serve, top the steaks with mushroom mixture. Sprinkle with parsley.

5.  Serve alongside a baked potato, roasted vegetables, salad and/or a rice pilaf.

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