Father/Daughter Cooking Series

Valentine’s Day Surf and Turf

There are two kinds of people in this world. The kind that makes reservations at a romantic restaurant weeks or even months before Valentine’s Day and the kind that freak out the day before because they forgot to plan anything. We aren’t much of planners ourselves…or romantics 🙂 So if you are like us or just want to stay in this V-Day, we are here to help. Our tradition of a family meal rather than a romantic dinner for two on Valentine’s Day began about 5 years ago. Why? We aren’t sure, but we dig it.

When this tradition began, our dad took it upon himself to prepare a delectable filet topped with shrimp and there was no turning back. He’s a master in the kitchen and loves to entertain more than anything. It’s actually one of my favorite things to watch. He works the room making sure everyone has what they need to enjoy themselves. I think I get my love for cooking from him, and Katie is his twin in every way. He’s more than special to us and we thought it would be so fun to do a father/daughter cooking series. Starting with this one! Not to mention, family recipes are the best recipes.

We cooked and shot this recipe on a rainy Sunday and it’s a day I will never forget. It was so much more than cooking a recipe for the blog. Which is one of the many reasons we decided on the series; we want to share family recipes with you that you can cook with a family member or loved one and create lifelong memories while doing it.

Our dad totally embraced this time to cook and spend time with us. He also threw in a few suggestions for the post! And when we threw out the idea to do a series he didn’t hesitate to say yes and started listing off all the recipe ideas.

I understand cooking isn’t relaxing to everyone but what better way to “unplug” for a bit and connect with a loved one. The star of the show is obvi the juicy bacon wrapped filets, but we paired them with two savory sides and complimented it all with our choice of red wine. I don’t know that it gets much better. Before we get into the how, we think it’s important to mention a few tips.

Buy Local

We are huge proponents of shopping local and it is no exception with food. I think we can all agree that the local butcher tops all. Our dad gets these 1 ¾ – 2 inch steaks cut special from a butcher at a local grocery store, D&M Foods. Quaint grocery stores are the best and sometimes it’s also cheaper!

Use the Cast Iron

Another trick for getting the perfect juicy steak is cooking it on a cast iron skillet. For this recipe you will use the stove and the oven so a cast iron is the only way to go. Our dad brought over his skillets and even those had a story. One was his grandmother’s. Just think about all of the awesome dishes that have been prepared in that skillet. Cast iron skillets last forever, but do need taken care of. Good ole dad cleaned and prepared his for a solid hour prior to cooking the steaks. It’s not necessary every time you use them, but a good cleaning and oiling does the skillet good and increases its longevity.

Pat in the Spices

This is a trick you can use on basically any recipe. Pat the spices into the meat. Yes, it will require you to use your hands and touching raw meat but it’s all part of the fun! Our dad explained that this trick helps prevent the spices from coming off during the cooking process. He makes his own spice blend (recipe below) that takes the steaks to the next level. You don’t want that stuff to be falling off! Pat it up!

Pick Your Sides

We chose to make my herb and garlic cauliflower mash and roasted brussels to go along with the steaks, but feel free to make this meal your own! A tossed salad, asparagus, or a baked potato would also be great options. I went ahead and included the recipes below for our sides.

Valentine’s Day Surf and Turf

Prep Time8 minutes
Cook Time23 minutes
Resting time5 minutes
Total Time30 minutes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Servings: 4 people


  • 4 2 inch Fillets
  • 4 tbsp homemade steak seasoning
  • 3 tbsp minced garlic
  • 2 sticks salted butter
  • 1/2 tbsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp ground pepper
  • 1 tsp herbs de provence
  • 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 cups your choice Alfredo sauce
  • 1 bag frozen shrimp
  • 1 juice of a lemon


  • Season steaks on both side with homemade steak seasoning (recipe below) for steaks. Pat seasoning into steaks.
  • Pour Worcestershire sauce evenly over the steaks
  • Preheat oven to 375 degrees
  • Melt 1 stick of butter and 1 tbsp minced garlic in cast iron skillet on medium/high heat until fragrant.  
  • Add steaks to cast iron skillet and cook on medium/high heat for 5 minutes on each side.
  • Add the steaks to the oven. For medium/rare, cook for 15 minutes. For medium/well, cook for 23 minutes. 
  • While steaks are cooking, heat up your other cost iron skillet on medium/high heat. 
  • Add 2 tbsp minced garlic and 1 stick of butter to the skillet and heat until fragrant. 
  • Rinse shrimp and pat dry. Toss them in the juice of 1 lemon. 
  • Add full bag of frozen shrimp to hot cast iron
  • Season with garlic powder and herbs de provence. 
  • Cook shrimp 10-15 minutes or until cooked through
  • Add alfredo and season with pepper. Cover and keep warm. 
  • Remove steaks from oven and let rest for 5 minutes
  • Serve shrimp with alfredo over the steaks.

Herb and Garlic Mashed Cauliflower

Prep Time5 minutes
Cook Time15 minutes
Total Time20 minutes
Course: Side Dish
Servings: 4 people


  • 1 head cauliflower
  • 2 tbsp ghee
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 tsp parsley
  • 1 tsp rosemary
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 1 tbsp olive oil


  • Cut cauliflower into florets
  • Steam until can barely pierce it with a fork
  • Transfer to food processor
  • Add garlic, ghee, rosemary, parsley, salt and pepper
  • Process until desired consistency 
  • Pour 1 tbsp olive oil over top of cauliflower mash
  • Top with chives and serve

Homemade Steak Seasoning


  • Mix equal parts:
    – Trader Joe’s Seasoning Salt
    – Montreal Grill Seasoning
    – Garlic Powder
    – Lowry’s Salt

Wine Pairing

Since this surf and turf is more decadent with the way the steak is seasoned and topped with cream sauce, we recommend a more rich red wine like a Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, or Syrah. Filet mignon has a rich, buttery texture so you want to avoid anything very fruity, as they can overwhelm the meat’s subtle flavors. Our favorite right now Francis Coppola’s Claret cab, as it’s creamy texture accompanies all elements of this meal to perfection. This particular wine can be found at most larger grocery stores and usually sells for about $13.

Bon appetit, friends! We hope your Valentine’s Day is filled with all the love you most certainly deserve!

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