Ah, Valentine’s Day…that one day where there is such a big fuss to show you’re special person you love them. To go to the grocery store and see grown men aimlessly wandering the candy/flower isles (which is hilarious by the way). Making reservations a month in advance because you know every place will be booked and charging an extra expensive 3 course meal. Not for the Rex’s! Yes we celebrated, but we decided to make a special meal here at home so we can stick to our low carb plan, but feel like we’re doing something special as well.
This year we decided to do cocoa-ancho chili rubbed steaks and creamy Parmesan greens and we toasted our many Valentine’s Day’s together with a lovely glass of red wine. It was both romantic and stress free. Mr. T did surprise me with a beautiful orchid and bath bombs. Such a romantic!
With the steak, I could have gone the expensive route and bought some filet mignon, but I choose to be more budget conscious and get a 4 pack of petite sirloin steaks. They had the most lovely marble, and great color and very affordable (I cook this cut a lot). I went ahead and mixed up a spice rub that sounded like it would add some great flavor and let them marinate in the refrigerator for about 4 hours. Then after resting at room temp for 20 minutes, Mr. T grilled them up! We have a 4x4x4 rule for the perfect medium (to be adjusted if your steaks are thicker) – 4 minutes on each side and then let them rest, tented in foil for 4 minutes. Perfection! Speaking of steaks, if anyone needs a REALLY great knife sharpener, we bought this SunrisePro one over a year ago. It’s very compact, mounts right under our cabinets and gets the knives super sharp!
Steak, glorious steeeaaak! I just want to pick one up and gnaw on it!
For the creamy Parmesan greens, you can use whatever dark leafy greens you like: kale, spinach, chard. I happen to buy us a ‘Power Greens’ baby lettuce combo at the store which combines the three greens I mentioned above for salads during the week. So, this was perfect to finish off that big pack of them. Combine them with shallots, and a creamy sauce and Parmesan and you won’t want to make creamed greens any other way!
So creamy and indulgent!
Prior to being cut into – Mr. T did awesome with those grill marks!
Cocoa-Ancho Rubbed Steaks
4 petite sirloin steaks
1 Tbsp cocoa powder
1 tsp ancho chili powder
½ tsp smoked paprika
¼ tsp coriander
¼ tsp garlic powder
Salt and Pepper
Mix all of the spices together. Pat on heavily on all sides of the steak fillets. Cover and refrigerate for 4 hours or so. When you’re ready to grill, heat the grill up to 400. While that is heating up, take the steaks out and let rest for at least 20 minutes (or until room temp). Put the steaks on, cook 4 minutes on each side, then take off the grill, tent with foil and let rest for at least 4 minutes. The steaks were about ¾ of an inch to an inch and this method gave us the perfect medium to medium rare and they were so juicy.
Serves: 4 (unless you’re really hungry – they are small steaks)!
Estimated Nutrition Stats (per serving): Calories – 66 | Fat – 4g | Carbs – 1g | Net carbs – 0g | Fiber – 1g | Protein – 6g
Creamy Parmesan Greens
½ shallot, chopped fine
2 cups greens, coarsely chopped (I used a salad Power Greens trio of baby spinach, baby kale and baby chard)
¼ cup of heavy whipping cream
¼ tsp grated nutmeg (I just grate from whole right into the pan)
1 clove of garlic, minced
Salt and pepper.
1 oz cream cheese cut into pieces
1 tsp Dijon mustard
½ cup of Parmesan, grated
Heat up your pan with a bit of olive oil. Toss in your shallot and stir until soft. Add in your greens, let those mostly wilt down. Once those are wilted, add your cream and seasonings. After that’s stirred, add in your cream cheese and stir until that melts. Once the cream cheese has melted and you can tell the sauce is getting thicker, add in your Dijon and parmesan. Ready to serve once the cheese has melted in.
Estimated Nutrition Stats (per serving): Calories – 208 | Fat – 17g | Carbs – 5g | Net carbs – 3g | Fiber – 2g | Protein – 10g