Date Night Dinner

Date Night Dinner!
So I have been invited to teach a cooking class at Gourmet Gallery. I really do have fun teaching those. But I was given the theme “Date Night.” LOL – since my own date nights seem to be few and far between, I decided to ask my facebook friends for ideas. I also looked up the top 10 aphrodisiac foods. My friend, Martha Hopkins, actually wrote a fun, and delicious, cookbook called Intercourses that I know Gourmet Gallery sells and that has recipes based on aphrodisiac foods. This is what all of my research led to:

Top 10 Aphrodisiac Foods:
1. Honey
2. Oysters
3. Garlic
4. Basil
5. Figs
6. Chocolate
7. Bananas
8. Avocado
9. Almonds
10. Asparagus

This is interesting to me, because many FB friends said that Italian food was “romantic.” Seeing as how garlic and basil made the list, I guess that isn’t so weird. I thought they were just referring to the “Lady and the Tramp” spaghetti scene! They also said small bites and things you could share. Fondue was mentioned more than once. I am not much of a “sharer”, so I decided to ignore that suggestion. But I did include things on skewers as a compromise! 

Here is my official date night menu:
“Drip of Honey skewers” – a toasty, honey balsamic soaked, bread salad starter
This one has: garlic, honey and avocado.

drip of honey skewers

“Fig Leaf Salad” – leafy greens with fresh basil and peaches, goat cheese, figs, sliced almonds and a fig balsamic drizzle
This one has: basil, figs, almonds

“The rest is gravy short ribs” – Beef short ribs, mashed potatoes and parmesan asparagus
This one has: zinc (in the beef – my oyster sub), garlic and asparagus

short ribs final
“Chocolate Covered Banana Skewers” – Chocolate cake soaked in a cocoa wine syrup, skewered with bananas
This one has: chocolate and bananas

I think that’s all of them! All 10. I mean, if you count the beef as oysters. And I do.

I am including the recipe for the short ribs here! Let me know how you like them. And here are pics from the practice dinner I made last night. I didn’t do the right salad, but I am included pics of the one I want to adapt. (see above) Last night I just made a caprese salad to get the basil in! And it wasn’t a date night. But it WAS a fun evening with the best guinea pig friends around. Followed by a rousing game of Skipbo. (that my friend Taylor and I won)

caprese salad

drip of honey skewers 2



If you are interested in coming to date night, just call Gourmet Gallery and sign up! It should be a fun time.


“The Rest is Gravy” Short Ribs

short ribs final 2


(Serves 4, but can be halved to serve 2 people)

6T butter

1 Cup flour

2T beef base, bouillon

2T granulated garlic

1T course ground black pepper

2C Sour Cream

Bottle of rich beer (I used Shiner)

Beef Short Ribs (about 12 ct)



  1.  In a medium saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat.  Add the flour and whisk immediately until a paste forms.
  2. Turn off heat.  Add the beef base, the garlic and black pepper.  Whisk until fully incorporated.  (it will be very thick)short ribs 4
  3. Add the sour cream until all is blended togethershort ribs 3
  4. Put this into the bottom of a crock pot or slow roastershort ribs 2
  5. Heat a very large skillet over high heat.  Sear the short ribs on both sides  (DO NOT SEASON)short ribs 5
  6. Lay the short ribs into the roux in the crock pot/roastershort ribs 1
  7. Pour the beer over the ribs until the liquid comes 1/3 way up the sides of the meat.  Don’t cover the meat completely with liquid.
  8. Cook on low for at least 8 hours.
  9. Serve the ribs with the “gravy” it made while they cooked! Perfect over mashed potatoes


This recipe was created for a date night cooking class.  It is part of a menu that includes most of the top 10 aphrodisiac foods.  This recipe includes 2 of them: the zinc from the beef, and garlic.  The reason this is perfect for date night is that there is very little active work.  You can actually put this together the night before (through step 6) and put the crock into the frig.  The morning of the date, pop it into the cooker, add the beer and let it go.  You can even make the mashed potatoes the night before.  Then you are just heating stuff up instead of boiling and mashing.  Served with a side of parmesan asparagus (another aphrodisiac food) and a chocolate dessert and you are well on your way to a fabulous time J

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