Valentine’s Day Recap with Steak Frites {CtBF}

Steak Frites

People have strong feelings about Valentine’s Day, for or against.  On the one hand, the holiday was probably invented by Hallmark to sell cards.  On the other hand, I love celebrations of any kind.  Personally, I stand firmly in the “Pro” camp.  What could be wrong about tell the special people in your life that you love them?  I buy cards and send them to family and friends (don’t be offended if you didn’t get one – I limit myself to one package each year).  For Howard, I buy a special card, and we make a nice dinner that starts off with Champagne.

There are so many recipes to choose from, in the books on my bookshelves, the magazines in piles, the recipes I’ve clipped, recommendations from my sisters, and the resources across the Internet.  Now that I’m back on the “Cook the Book” train with Cook the Book Fridays, the choice for a few meals each month is simplified.

This week’s recipe from David Leibovitz’s My Paris Kitchen offered the perfect idea for a romantic dinner for two.  Steak Frites au Beurre de Moutarde  – in English, Steak with mustard butter and French fries.  Because I’m scared of deep-frying, I was wary of the accompanying French fries, but upon reading the recipe, learned they were oven fries.  Russet potatoes are cut in to French-fry-sized batons, tossed with olive oil, kosher salt, and fresh herbs, then baked until crispy.

Herby Oven Fries

Meanwhile, rib-eye steak is seasoned with smoked salt, chipotle pepper and fresh parsley, then seared to perfection in a cast-iron pan.  The piping hot steaks are served with dollops of compound mustard butter, made with both Dijon and dry mustard powder.  To round out the meal, I made this delicious recipe for tahini-roasted broccoli from Food52.

Rib Eye Steak

What a winning combination for a relatively simple, yet restaurant-worthy meal!  I’m excited to know how to make really great fries without frying too.  There’s some leftover mustard butter so I’m curious if anyone has suggestions to use it up.

I have to mention dessert too.  I’ve long been a fan of molten chocolate cake.  The recipe for Deep-Dark-Chocolate Pudding Cakes from Joanne Chang’s newest book Baking with Less Sugar is my new favorite recipe.  It’s to die for!!!!

To read all about my friends’ steak dinners, check out their links here.

Due to copyright considerations, I don’t share the recipe here.  You can find it on pages 206 (steak) and 219 (frites) of David Leibovitz’s My Paris Kitchen.  Or feel free to drop me a line and I’ll share it with you.



Posted on 19 February 2016, in Cook The Book Fridays and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 17 Comments.

  1. I am in the “pro” camp too Betsy. It sounds like you and Howard had a lovely meal. The steak looks great, and topped off with champers and chocolate pudding, it all sounds amazing.

  2. I am not sure how I feel about the day, but my girls enjoy getting candy still :-) We always mail Sarah a box of silly candy (chocolate lips, gummy fish, and stuff) and make cards.
    For the adults, we plan a nice dinner out either before or after the holiday (neither of us want to deal with restaurant service on that day) and I’ll make a nice dinner at home on the actual day. If I hadn’t already made this a couple of weeks prior, I probably would have picked this as well. (We ended up eating filet mignon and smashed baby potatoes fried in duck fat).

  3. We don’t “do” Valentine’s Day either but if we did this would be top of the list for the menu!

  4. I’m definitely a pro, though we never go out on the day itself after I had a long-term illness for a first V Day years ago and all the restaurants were booked up by the time we realized I’d be better enough to go out. :) What a great dish for a Valentine’s Day celebration (and I was hoping people might make it as such when I scheduled it for today)! It’s sumptuous and elegant, but relatively easy and low-key. Perfect! That dessert…we’ve talked about it before and I scrolled through the preview on Google Books. I’m totally salivating over those recipes!

  5. No longer in the celebrating group, but must agree this steak and fries combo of David’s is a great celebration menu for all occasions. Sounds you had a great Valentine’s dinner!

  6. Betsy, your dinner looks fabulous!! So happy that you and Howard had such a nice evening with such a delicious meal! I think it’s so much more coy to stay home. And this was a perfect recipe for it. I didn’t make the fries because I wasn’t smart enough to read the recipe ahead of time and find that they were baked. Oh well, it all worked out!!

  7. Betsy, it all looks wonderful. This was such a lovely dinner and perfect for a celebration.

  8. I cannot remember who mentioned and raved about Chang’s “Baking with Less Sugar” cookbook in the last few weeks. Was it you. Maybe Cher. Anyway, did you buy it, sneaking it into the house at the bottom of a Trader Joe’s bag. I’ll check it out through the library here. Thank you always for suggestions. I am in the Yes box on celebrating Valentine’s Day also. Our family never misses an opportunity to celebrate either. I really enjoyed this steak. What’s not to like about beef with a glob of butter on top. But those baked fries. I could not believe how delicious they were. So far so good. Two winning posts from Lebovitz’s My Paris Kitchen.

  9. Nicole @ The 2nd 35 Years

    Yours looks great! So glad to be joining you all on this new cook the book challenge!

  10. I keep meaning to put a hold on ‘Baking with Less Sugar’ at the library – I’m trying not to buy so many cookbooks…

    We don’t celebrate Valentine’s Day (though Kevin’s birthday is the week before, so there’s definitely some celebrating in February), but this recipe is perfect celebration food. I enjoyed it so much, just as an end-of-the-week treat yesterday.

  11. Betsy, It looks great!! And the deep dark chocolate pudding cakes sound great- what a wonderful valentine’s day for you and Howard!

  12. I agree, this was a restaurant worthy meal! I’m so glad you guys had a great Valentine’s dinner. I have that Joanne Chang book, I’m going to try the pudding cakes. I just ate 2 of Dorie’s hot chocolate panna cotta cups for tomorrow’s TWD and am wishing they were in some way healthy to justify eating them!!!

  13. I was also wary of the fries before seeing that they were oven fries. I love regular fries too (seriously, who doesn’t!), but I do not love to make them, so this recipe is definitely a keeper.

    I think it’s cute that you put effort into Valentines Day. I recently had a pretty funny discovery about the day. You see, my husband’s name is Klaudius and I recently discovered that it was Roman emperor Claudius who had St. Valentine sentenced to death. No kidding! So, I’d say that my Klaudius has a lot of bad karma to make up for;-)

  14. I guess I’m going to have to get this book too now. Everything looks and sounds delicious!
    -Your Favorite Sister

  15. This recipe really was ready-made for Valentine’s Day. We’re kind of in the middle on Valentine’s Day; we don’t exchange cards or gifts, but I use it as an excuse to make a nice meal and dessert. This was a big hit for us too, and I will definitely be making it again.

  16. Definitely in the pro camp! We both always enjoy a laid back special dinner at home. To me, it’s all about being with the ones you love.
    David’s steak and fries were amazingly delicious! I made the TWD pick for Hot Chocolate Panna Cotta to round our our dinner…just perfect!
    Your broccoli looks and sounds wonderful…thanks for the recipe! Have a great week, Betsy! Thanks for all your wonderful support…I truly appreciate it!

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