First off, I would like to welcome you to my weekly “Sunday Dinner” blog! So what exactly IS “Sunday Dinner”? Sunday Dinner is going to be place where we can talk, share ideas, ask and answer questions, and just enjoy. I’ll also be sharing a lot of personal stories here as well so that you all can get to know me a little better outside of some of the places you have seen me before. And of course there will be recipes to try as well. Growing up, my family had a sit down family dinner every night. Once I reached high school, and then my younger brother the following year, those dinners did not happen as much. Being involved in sports, and other activities, it just didn’t happen. Sundays however, we had those dinners. It was a time, like I’m sure for most families, to sit down, talk, catch up, and just get ready for the next week. I have always said that food brings everyone together. Even when those conversations about touchy subjects get heated, when the food is good, a lot of the non-sense can be put to rest, at least while the food is still there! So that is why I choose to call this blog “Sunday Dinner”. The week we are talking Valentines Day.
Tonight’s Menu (Recipes to follow at the bottom):
Surf & Turf (Filet Mignon & Lobster Tail
Italian (or Tuscan) Kale
Polenta Cake with Goat Cheese and Rosemary
This was the first Valentine’s Day dinner (and possibly REAL meal) that I cooked for my wife Candiace. We had not been dating long at the time, and I really had a love/hate relationship with this day anyway. Working for over 0 years in the restaurant & hospitality industry, Valentine’s is one of the busiest days of the year, so I always found myself working. This year was no exception, as it fell n a Sunday, so I had a random Friday night off, and that was when we decided to celebrate!
Apparently I deleted the original picture form my phone, so you all get this lovely IG post picture! Not my best “plating’ work, but you get the gist of it.
I used to be a BIG fan of Valentine’s Day. I would buy lots of gifts, plan the whole day, and really go all out. Unfortunately, a woman who shall remain nameless, ruined it all. After we broke up, I hated it, I became a very selfish person, the romantic in me had left the building. There were no more random flower purchases, date nights, celebrating Valentine’s Day, NOTHING. This is definitely one of the many reasons that my first marriage ended up not working out. It really took a long time for me to find that part of me again. I definitely did not find it on my own though. Candiace played a huge roll in that. Just getting to know her in the first few months of our relationship, she was slowly opening me up. I think it takes a really special person to see your flaws and faults, and understand them, and understand you, and STILL accept all of that and want to help you grow, not only in your relationship, but as a person as well. She was bringing the fire back to me for sure. Now, I still do not bu random flowers, mostly because they end up dying anyway and just feel that it is a waste of money. Luckily for me, she is “mostly” ok with that, even though she still hints at it from time to time. Every now and then I buy some, but those usually end up being for her birthday or anniversary.
Ok, that’s enough of the mushy stuff. Here are my “tips” for a great Valentine’s Day:
- STAY HOME, either order in or cook a special meal. There are too many distractions when you are out and about. Go out to dinner another night! Side Note: if you do not have a designated “date night”….MAKE ONE
- Make sure you have your favorite his & hers beverages to enjoy before, during, & after dinner
- PUT THE PHONES AWAY, these are just a distraction, and the day IS about love and each other, so keep it that way
- Actually talk to each other, not about “how was your day”, but meaningful conversation
- Enjoy the alone time with each other!!
Now, if you have kids, I understand this is tough to do. The real key is to just get some quality time alone without the distractions. Hope you all enjoy your Valentine’s however it is that you choose to. Now go check out the recipes below, and don’t forget to send me any questions, comments, topics for our next Sunday Dinner!