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Gilbert Lodge
Since 2004



               The Gilbert Lodge Blog from Brainerd, MN, USA

February 14, 2005:  It is Saint Valentines Day and Chef Paula is busy in the Chef's Galley at Gilbert Lodge preparing an excellent supper.

Paula and Mark at down for a wonderful dinner experience in the Gilbert Lodge Grand Dining Room.      

The recipe came from the February 11th edition of the Brainerd Daily Dispatch.


Cook a Romantic Dinner at Home
By DIANE HOGLIN Food Columnist for the Brainerd Daily Dispatch.
Nice soft lighting, a beautiful arrangement of flowers, soft music and the perfect meal to me is the best way to say, "Be mine," and share Valentine's Day with the one you love.

Yes, it's more work than letting someone else do the cooking, but making your own Valentine's feast can be more fun and more romantic than eating out.  In fact, I think cooking the dinner together would be fun as you sip a glass of wine and prepare a special meal for just the two of you.

Garlic Merlot Sauced Sirloin Steak

14 ounces sirloin steak
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 tablespoon finely chopped garlic
6 tablespoons Merlot wine
3/4 cup beef stock or canned broth
3 tablespoons butter

Sprinkle steak with salt and pepper. Heat oil in heavy, large skillet over high heat. Add steak and cook until brown, about 1 minute per side. Reduce heat to medium and cook steak to desired doneness, about 3 minutes per side for medium-rare. Transfer steak to plate; tent with foil.

Add garlic to same skillet and saute over medium high heat 1 minute. Add Merlot; boil until reduced by half, about 2 minutes. Add stock; boil until syrupy, about 8 minutes. Remove skillet from heat. Add butter and whisk until melted. Season with salt and pepper. Cut steak into 2 pieces; place on plates. Spoon sauce over steak and serve.

Mary Jo's Orange Almond Salad

6 cups romaine lettuce, bite-size pieces
11 ounces mandarin oranges
2 stalks celery, thinly sliced
1/3 cup toasted slivered almonds
6 slices bacon, fried crisp and drained

1/4 cup vegetable oil
2 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon almond flavoring

Combine salad ingredients. Set aside. Combine dressing ingredients; toss with salad right before serving.

German Chocolate Cake/Pecan Coconut Frosting Frosting:

1 1/2 cups chopped pecans
7 ounces sweetened coconut flakes
12-ounce can evaporated milk
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter
4 large egg yolks, slightly beaten
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla

1 package German chocolate cake mix, without pudding
1 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla

For frosting, place rack in center of oven and preheat to 350 degrees. Spread pecans and coconut on baking sheet and toast in oven for 7 minutes or until pecans deepen in color and coconut turns golden brown. Remove from oven and set aside.

Place remaining frosting ingredients in large saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring constantly until thickened and golden brown, 10-12 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir in pecans and coconut.

Cool to room temperature and spreading consistency, 30 minutes.

For cake, generously grease two 9-inch round cake pans with solid vegetable shortening, then dust with flour. Shake out excess flour. Leave oven on. In large mixing bowl, blend cake mix, buttermilk, oil, eggs and vanilla with electric mixer on low speed for 1 minute. Stop machine and scrape down sides of bowl with rubber spatula. Increase mixer speed to medium and beat 2 minutes more, scraping down bowl again if needed. Batter should look well combined.

Divide batter between prepared pans, smoothing it out with rubber spatula. Place pans in oven side by side. Bake cakes until they spring back when lightly pressed with finger, 32-34 minutes. Cool 10 minutes on wire rack.

Run dinner knife around edge of each layer and invert onto rack, then invert again onto another rack so that cakes are right side up. Cool completely.

To assemble, place one cake right side up on serving platter. Spread top with frosting. Place second layer right side up, on first layer and frost top only.

Store cake at room temperature for up to three days, or in refrigerator up to one week. May freeze, if wrapped in aluminum foil or in a cake saver, for up to six months. Thaw cake in refrigerator overnight.

FOOD FOR THOUGHT: A good laugh is sunshine in the room.

GARY'S TIP: A good substitute for bread crumbs is crushed dry cereal like corn flakes or wheat flakes.

Questions, Comments?  

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page last edited 09/04/2021