When it comes to dating it just seems more fun to have a date night indoors during the fall season! Fall decorations are so festive and fun, not to mention who doesn’t want to cozy up with the person you love, and have a great night in? Recently I had the opportunity to be romantic and thoughtful for a special someone. While they were working a late night shift I snuck into their apartment and prepared a restaurant entrée that was to die for! I also had the chance to set up a fall tablespace fit for just the two of us. If you want to create a special night in for someone restaurant style follow my tips below.
HOW TO PLAN THE PERFECT FALL DATE NIGHT IN!
- WHAT MEAL ARE YOU GOING TO MAKE? Think of a restaurant meal that’s easy to make, but pairs well with a great red wine of choice. If it’s a surprise think about the time it will take to prepare the meal along with preparation for the key ingredients. I chose to make baked rosemary garlic porkchops topped with garlic salzon aioli sauce, pan roasted green beans and tomatoes, and garlic red potatoes.
- WINE FOR THE WIN! Think of a wine selection that will pair well with your meat for the night. That’s if you eat meat, if not think of a cute fall inspired cocktail that will fit your fall dinner theme. My wine of choice for the night was from the brand Stella Rosa in the watermelon flavor.
- WHAT’S YOUR FALL THEME? When it comes to deciding a tablescape you have to think of a theme. My theme for the night was wine coupled with a fall night. I found these napkins at Target that said wine on them. I was also able to find some plush pumpkins at target that could fit into my wine tablescape and from there my theme was born. I added a tablecloth, runner, and some candles with diamonds and my table was set. Remember to keep it simple and stick to your theme.
4. PLAY MUSIC! What’s a romantic dinner without music? Think of slow R&B or some of his favorite songs and play them before he walks in. While you both eat you can groove and sip wine over your favorite tunes.
5. LET THAT PERSON KNOW THEY ARE SPECIAL! I think the date night in will make them feel appreciated but words can be an added bonus. Celebrate and have fun with your cozy night in.
MY RECIPE FOR THE RESTAURANT QUALITY DINNER I CHOSE TO MAKE
- Get porkchops, you can opt for the bone in or bone out. I chose to have the bone in, but they were cut really small. Start off by rinsing your meat and patting them dry with a paper towel in order to soak up the access water. Then season your chops to your liking. My seasonings were garlic powder, onion powder, old bay, rosemary, oregano, adobo, black cracked pepper, and a pinch of salt. Next let the seasoning sit on the chops for 30 minutes in the fridge covered with plastic wrap. While they are sitting start prepping your veggies. Once the porkchops are done in the fridge, in a non stick skillet melt some butter and add minced garlic sear the porkchops on each side for 2-4 minutes until golden brown. Then transfer the leftover oils and fats to a baking dish with a little bit of water at the bottom add the chops and add some butter on top to each one bake them in the oven on 350 until they are done to your liking.
2. Get fresh green beans and two on the vine tomatoes. I find that the vine tomatoes are easier for roasting. Cut your tomatoes into slices as if you were preparing a sandwich. I like to cut out the gooey seeds and the middle and only have the outside for roasting, but it’s up to you. Then arrange the tomatoes on the baking sheet and drizzle lightly with olive oil, salt, and pepper. For the green beans also drizzle them lightly in olive oil and add them to the baking sheet keeping them separated from the tomatoes. Season them with garlic powder, minced garlic, season salt, and red pepper flakes. Bake on 375 for 15-20 minutes. If you are cooking a smaller amount reduce the baking time. Before the total baking time is finished remove your tomatoes when it gets to 15mins exactly you don’t want them to burn. If you like your tomatoes more crispy then bake them the total baking time.
3. Make your red potatoes– Get red small potatoes prepackaged to save time. I found them at my local grocery store. You literally pop them in the microwave and add the seasoning pack that it comes with. I chose the garlic potatoes. If you want to cook your own you can sear them or roast them in the oven as well. Here is the link to the potatoes I made. Click here.
4. Make your garlic salzon aoli sauce– Buy the adobo salzon seasoning from the grocery store along with heavy whipping cream, butter, flour, mayo, garlic, and parsley. In a medium sauce pan add your heavy whipping cream and one pack of salzon seasoning bring it to a medium boil. Add minced garlic and a teaspoon of mayo. Next add garlic butter and a tablespoon of parsley. I prefer the parsley seasoning instead of the fresh one. Then stir with a whisk and add flour as you go to add thickness to the sauce. Use a little bit of flour at a time and continue to stir. For flavor add salt, pepper, and adobo seasoning. Once the sauce reaches a good thickness and flavor it’s done. Once you plate your food drizzle the sauce onto the porkchops with a fork to give it a restaurant flair.
5. Plate! Make sure you plate the food as a restaurant would. Add your meat with the sauce. I chose to cut open up my potatoes and plated my green beans next to the potatoes with the tomatoes on top of my green beans for garnish.
Below is a picture of my tablescape! I hope you enjoyed this post on how the have the perfect fall date night in. Let me know in the comments if you decide to use the recipe or some of the items from my table decor.
*** All items found in my tablescape were purchased at Target or repurposed! Get creative!
Until Next Time,
L’Markeinparis ( Lala Walston)