All Courses Lavender

An easy romantic meal inspired by my grandparents' life-long romance. It's a man-pleasing meal, a big steak with fried potatoes and at the end, crème brûlée. Lavender plays in all three but is light and surprising, not in the least bit overpowering.

Lavender Steak & Lavender Potatoes

When my grandfather was courting my grandmother in the spring of 1920, he posted a soggy box of woodland violets still clumped in their forest-floor dirt. (Never mind that she was away at college and engaged to her high school sweetheart.) His romantic spirit reaped rich reward: four children and 29 grandchildren, great-grandchildren and great-great grandchildren.

With Valentine’s Day falling on a Tuesday, reservations are the easy answer. But this year, consider romancing your sweetheart with an almost-as-easy special meal cooked at home.

Just shop for groceries and make the crème brulee on the Monday, then make quick work of the potatoes and steaks after work on Tuesday. Add a simple salad and a bottle of good wine: I suspect your romantic spirit will be wholly welcomed, too.

LAVENDER CRÈME BRULEE Bring a cup of cream and a tablespoon of dried lavender almost to a boil. Let rest for 10 minutes, then strain. Whisk the cream with 2 large egg yolks, 1/4 cup sugar and 1/4 teaspoon vanilla. Pour into 2 medium or 4 tiny ramekins. Bake for 30 minutes at 325F until thick in a foil-covered baking dish filled with boiling water half as high as the ramekins. Sprinkle with brown sugar and place under the broiler for a few minutes until the sugar melts and browns a bit. Chill until served.

ALANNA's TIPS This is a man-pleasing, mansized-appetite meal promised to seduce the ladies, too. Find dried lavender at health food stores and upscale groceries. It pays to shop for price; I’ve seen it from $2 to $24 an ounce.

ALL COURSES LAVENDER:
LAVENDER STEAK & POTATOES

Hands-on time: 30 minutes
Time-to-table: 45 minutes
Serves 2
    LAVENDER POTATOES
  • 1/2 pound new potatoes, scrubbed
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried lavender
  • 1/2 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 teaspoon dried lavender
  • 1 teaspoon fresh rosemary, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

Boil potatoes and 1/2 teaspoon lavender in water til cooked, then drain. (Can be cooked ahead to here.) Cut into quarters. Melt butter in skillet, add 1 teaspoon lavender, rosemary and salt. Stir in potatoes, heat through until just beginning to brown.

    LAVENDER STEAK
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon fresh pepper
  • 1 teaspoon ground fennel
  • 2 rib eye steaks (8 ounces each)
  • 2 teaspoons vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 tablespoon A-1 steak sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried lavender

Mix salt, pepper and fennel and rub on both sides of steaks. Heat oil in a cast iron skillet until very hot. Add steaks, cook 5 to 7 minutes per side for medium, 3 to 5 minutes for rare. Remove from heat. Combine remaining ingredients and spread on top. Cover and let rest 5 minutes before serving.

NUTRITION INFORMATION Per Serving (please remember, these are large steaks, "ladies" usually eat half or less): 721 Calories; 48g Tot Fat; 20g Sat Fat; 24g Carb; 3g Fiber; 2045mg Sodium; 152mg Cholesterol; 48g Protein. WEIGHT WATCHERS POINTS WW Old Points 18, WW PointsPlus 19

Kitchen Parade is written by second-generation food columnist Alanna Kellogg and features fresh, seasonal dishes for every-day healthful eating and occasional indulgences. Do you have a favorite romance-friendly recipe that other Kitchen Parade readers might like? Just send me a quick e-mail via recipes@kitchen-parade.com. How to print a Kitchen Parade recipe. Never miss a recipe! If you like this recipe, sign up for a free e-mail subscription. If you like Kitchen Parade, you're sure to like my food blog about vegetable recipes, too, A Veggie Venture. Follow Kitchen Parade on Facebook!

And For Dessert ...

(hover for a description, click a photo for a recipe)
Lavender Crème Brûlée, Creme Brulee
Strawberry Fool Chocolate Decadence Cake Sugar-Free Raspberry Bliss

More Easy Romantic Meals for Lovers

(hover for a description, click a photo for a recipe)
Roasted Salmon & Asparagus Perfect Lamb Chops Wine-Braised Pork Roast
~ more steak recipes ~
~ more Valentines recipes ~


What a wonderful story and what a great new thing to do with my lavender.

Thanks for sharing.

2/16/2006
 
Thank you so much for posting to my blog! I am always so excited to read and try other's lavender recipes. They really look fabulous and I will definitely be trying them!

5/08/2006
 

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Thank you for taking a moment to write! I read each and every comment, for each and every recipe. If you have a specific question, it's nearly always answered quick-quick. But I also love hearing your reactions, your curiosity, even your concerns! When you've made a recipe, I especially love to know how it turned out, what variations you made, what you'll do differently the next time. ~ Alanna