In addition to the root beer float cupcakes I made for my Mr.’s birthday dessert at his parents’ house, I had other food plans. We spent his actual birthday with all of our parents, but I always prepare a special meal for his birthday and I still wanted to do that. I gave him two options for a birthday dinner: we could either go out to a steakhouse for dinner, or I would cook at home. Cooking at home for the win!
The obvious choice was to bring the steakhouse to him. We were both happy to have dinner at home after an exhausting week.
To start, Caesar salad. As a vegetarian, I don’t order Caesar salad at restaurants because it’s so common to use anchovies in the dressing. I took this opportunity to make my own dressing using this recipe here. Of course, I ran into a problem making the dressing. I thought I had dijon mustard in the fridge, but when I opened the door I was wrong. I searched for a substitution for dijon mustard and found a simple recipe using ground mustard, mayo, and white wine vinegar. I had all of those ingredients so I gave it a shot, and it worked pretty well.
Next up, the main course.
I used Martha Stewart’s creamed spinach recipe; it was absolutely delicious! It was perfectly creamy, enough to be tasty and filling, but not so much that you forget you’re eating a vegetable. I followed this recipe exactly.
I stuck with Martha and used her twice baked potato recipe too. The only change I made to the recipe was using 1/2 cup instead of 1/4 cup of cheese in the mashed potatoes.
My Mr. prepared the steak. Maybe next year I’ll make it myself! He makes it seem pretty simple. He sprinkles both sides of the steak with salt and pepper, sears it in a cast iron skillet for about one minute on each side, then pops the skillet into the oven for about 10 minutes. I think I could handle it.
For dessert, I had promised to make a cheesecake. I intended to make a cheesecake last year, but sadly it never happened. Last year we ate grilled cheese on his birthday. While it was delicious and special to eat together during the week, I owed it to both of us to take this year up a notch.
Heart shaped Oreo cheesecake elevates any meal. Complete with sparkler birthday candles.
This was the first time I’ve made a cheesecake, and I was surprised by how long it needs to cool. You should really plan in advance if you’re making a cheesecake. But, if you’re really tired and make a cheesecake later in the day than planned and it can only chill for two hours instead of the three plus recommended, it will still taste like cheesecake! I used this recipe for Oreo cheesecake bars. It was enough to fill the heart shaped pan plus an 8×8 square brownie pan.
I loved the thick Oreo cookie crust and Oreos throughout the cheesecake. And the birthday boy liked it too!
What’s your favorite birthday meal?