How about a great steak dinner for St. Valentine’s Day? And by “great” I mean something that’s fairly quick and easy to prepare. Of course, your significant other won’t know that. They’ll see that steak dish and go “Oh my!” And you’ll have it in the bag for the rest of the evening.

St. Valentine’s Day dinners are special occasions. This is not a mac n’ cheese thing—unless, of course,  your valentine loves mac n’ cheese. In which case, go at it. But if it’s special then the steak will have to be special. By that I mean filet mignon, or T-bone, or even better yet, porterhouse steak. That’s the dish given below. This is where the spice rub comes in. Improvise: take whatever you have in the cupboard, mix or grind all the spices, rub on each side of the meat, let stand 30 minutes, and roast. Nothing could be easier. With a bottle of champagne, or your favorite bubbly, and you’re set for a great evening.

This dish can be served with the old stand-by, potatoes, or whatever vegetables desired. Want to impress your darling even more, you can do dumplings or tostones (fried green plantains – see post of  9/9/10).


2  2-inch porterhouse steaks
2  tablespoons whole black peppercorns
2  garlic cloves, crushed, or 1/2  teaspoon garlic powder
1  teaspoon salt
3  tablespoons fresh chopped thyme or 1 tablespoon dried
2  tablespoons fresh oregano or 1 tablespoon dried
2  tablespoons olive oil

1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
2. Wash steaks under cold running water and pat dry with paper towels.
3. Crush peppercorns and garlic in a mortar or spice mill.
4 .Place crushed spices in a small bowl, and mix in salt, thyme, and oregano.
5. Brush both sides of meat with olive oil. Then rub with spice mixture into each side. Set aside and let stand 30 minutes.
6. Place in oven-proof dish and roast for about 25 minutes for rare ( to be sure, meat thermometer inserted into center of steak should register 125 degrees F.). Let stand 10 minutes, and serve.
    Yield: 3-4 servings.