Cozy Couple’s Carb-Free Dinner

SteakWhile our house tends to be divided on the frequency of carbs in our dinner schedule, I found a way to sneak in a hearty, warm and satisfying dinner without the usual pasta or bread. I am by no means on the anti-carb bandwagon; however, I think we need to scale back on our consumption of these delectable items from time to time—especially with a trip to Florida in the near future.

What really makes this meal so appealing is just how quickly it can all be pulled together—great for those hectic weeknights or even a Valentine’s Day dinner plagued by shoveling and frigid temperatures.

Some items you should already have or run out to purchase:
Meat thermometer Meat thermometer—and trust me when I say, this is one of the key tools in my entire kitchen and not just for cooking meat. After last week’s baking class, I learned it is even useful for gauging the perfect doneness of breads (an optimal 200 degrees F for perfect bread). Here’s a link to the one purchased on Amazon that I swear by: Meat Thermometer on Amazon

Oven thermometerOven thermometer—if nothing more, this $10 item will provide at least a few hours of entertainment when you finally fire up your oven and see just how inaccurate it may actually be—our 2-year-old oven is approximately 8 degrees F off (up to 350 degrees F) and then 12 degrees off ( >350 degrees F). This gadget may solve a number of baking-related frustrations. Here’s a link to the one I purchased on Amazon (but available locally at your Bed Bath and Beyond, etc.): Oven Thermometer on Amazon

For a cozy carb-free couple’s dinner, simply follow these relatively simple steps:

Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: Approx. 20 minutes

For the Steaks
• 2 8-oz filet mignon steaks
• 2 tablespoons of olive oil
• 2 tablespoons of unsalted butter
• 2 tablespoons of fresh thyme, finely chopped
• Salt and pepper

For the Red Wine Reduction
• 1/2 cup of beef broth
• 1 cup of red wine—preferably cabernet sauvignon
• 1 cup of baby bella mushrooms—be sure to dust off any dirt
• 1 tablespoon of butter
• Salt and pepper

For the Broccoli Side
• 2 cups of broccoli, washed and cut into bite-sized pieces
• 2 tablespoons of butter
• Salt and pepper

Remove steaks from the refrigerator and marinate with plenty of salt and pepper on both sides. Leave marinated steaks on the counter for 30 minutes. Allowing the steak to come to room temperature will provide a better sear.

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees

In an oven-safe pan, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil on medium-high heat. Place the steaks on the heated pan for 3-4 minutes – do not touch the steaks or even take a peek. After 3-4 minutes, flip the steaks over and wait another 3-4 minutes, being careful not to move them on the pan.

Remove steaks from stovetop and place oven-safe pan in the oven—set the timer for 5-8 minutes and check the steaks’ temperature periodically. Timing will depend on the desired level of doneness via a meat thermometer. Here are the approximate temperatures/doneness:
• Rare – 123 degrees F
• Medium Rare – 130 degrees F
• Medium – 137 degrees F
• Medium Well – 150 degrees F
• Well – 160 degrees F

After steaks reach desired temperature, remove from oven and let rest covered loosely by tinfoil for 10 minutes.

While the steaks are searing, heat 1 tablespoon of butter in a nonstick fry pan on medium heat. Place a baby bella mushrooms in and coat in butter –stirring for 1-2 minutes. Add the beef broth and red wine. Turn the heat up to medium high and let the mixture reduce by ½–approximately 10 minutes.

Fill medium saucepan with 1 cup of water and drop bite-sized broccoli in. Heat pan over medium heat until steamed—about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and add butter, salt and pepper.

Assemble steak with wine reduction and broccoli on plate and serve with remaining cabernet sauvignon.

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