Have you ever gone out on Valentine’s Day for a romantic dinner only to be disappointed by the noise level of the restaurant, food that didn’t quite measure up, or felt rushed by the wait staff to move along for the their next seating? We have, and it didn’t take long to figure out we could create a romantic dinner for two at home with far less hassle and a lot more intimacy.
Are you tempted to try something different, skip the crowded restaurants, but not sure you can pull-off a sweetheart dinner at home?
Scampi-Style Steak & Scallops with Roasted Asparagus is an impressive dish, takes only a few minutes to prepare, and the cost will be easier to stomach too. Tenderloin steak is seared in butter then finished with scallops in subtle accents of lemon zest, white wine, garlic, and fresh basil creating surf-n-turf heaven.
The key is quality ingredients, so choose fresh lemon and herbs, large scallops, and tenderloin steaks—beef tenderloin (the wider end of the loin) or filet mignon (the small, forward end of the loin) is the ideal cut for its tenderness and ease of preparation. If you are not familiar with scallops, here is a helpful guide to selecting quality sea scallops at Sally’s Place. Of course, this recipe works just as well with colossal shrimp if sea scallops are not available.
Make sitting down to dinner as stress-free as possible by setting the table and preparing all the ingredients before you begin cooking—the entire process will only take about 20 minutes. While the asparagus roasts, you will be busy at the stove with the scallops and steak, both should be done at the same time. Feel free to slice a crusty loaf of bread with this special meal so you can soak up and savor every lemon-garlic-buttery bite.
And there’s dessert, right?! Here’s a just-as-easy elegant dessert for two.
Another amazing dine-in, date night dinner for two is this easy Crab Legs How-To.
- 2 medium beef tenderloin steaks
- 3 tablespoons butter
- ¼ cup finely chopped green onion
- 3 large cloves garlic -- minced
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 6 large sea scallops -- peeled and deveined
- ¼ cup dry white wine
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice -- fresh squeezed
- 1 tablespoon minced parsley
- 1 tablespoon fresh basil -- chiffonade
- ¼ teaspoon lemon zest
- dash hot pepper sauce
- salt and pepper to taste
- Season steaks with salt and pepper. In a large skillet, preferably cast iron, heat 3 tablespoons of butter over medium heat until hot and bubbly. Add steaks to skillet and cook 5-7 minutes per side for medium-rare. After steaks are seared on one side and ready to be turned, add scallops to the skillet to sear, 1-2 minutes on each side, right beside the steaks, but not touching.
- After starting steaks in the skillet, begin to make the sauce. In a medium skillet or sauce pan, sauté onion and garlic over medium heat in 2 tablespoons olive oil until fragrant. Add wine and lemon juice, simmer to reduce slightly, 1-2 minutes. Add butter and stir until melted into the sauce.
- When the scallops are seared on each side, stir the fresh parsley, lemon zest, basil, and hot pepper sauce into the scampi sauce. Reduce heat to low, add seared scallops, spooning the sauce over the scallops. When the steaks are seared, add to the pan with the scallops and spoon sauce over the steaks.
- Serve immediately with additional sauce over both the scallops and the steak.
If you want to make it a two sauce meal, use your blender to make this quick hollandaise sauce for the asparagus.
- 1 pound asparagus -- ends trimmed
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- salt and pepper
- Position top oven rack in the middle of the oven, approximately 12 inches under broiler and turn broiler on HI. Prepare asparagus by trimming fibrous ends. Arrange asparagus on a rimmed baking sheet so that each spear is touching the pan and separate. Drizzle with olive oil and roll asparagus to coat well. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
- Set asparagus under the broiler for 10-12 minutes, checking and turning (rolling ¼ turn) asparagus every few minutes until lightly browned in spots and crisp tender. Cook slightly longer if a softer texture is preferred.