Want a great “Date Night” 3-Course Menu suitable for a Fit Couple? For those of you choosing to cook for your loved one it can be a daunting task, especially if you don’t want to undo all of your hard work in the gym but still want a yummy clean meal. This quick, simple 3 course meal is gluten and dairy free, as well as nutritionally balanced so that you can eat and enjoy without fretting over calories, fat content and carbohydrates, etc. Even a fitness competitor could eat this without breaking a sweat by simply weighing and measuring it to their needs. Although this is a clean meal, I still recommend portion control for everyone as well as using fresh, organic produce. The ingredients listed below for each course are to serve 2 people. I’ve kept it quick and simple on purpose so that you have more time to spend with your loved one. I recommend making the ice-cream the morning of, or the night before you plan to serve this to save you even more time because although it takes less than a minute to make it does take a few hours to freeze properly.
Appetizer: Baby Spinach salad
• 2 cups washed baby spinach
• 6 baby tomatoes
• 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
• 2 tsps olive oil
• 2 tsps flax seeds or pine nuts
Wash and dry the spinach leaves and baby tomatoes. In a medium size bowl mix the balsamic vinegar and olive oil, add the spinach and toss well. Divide between 2 small plates, decorate with cherry tomatoes and then sprinkle with the seeds or nuts. This simple, fast appetizer means you have more time to spend with your loved one and less time slaving in the kitchen. It’s packed with Vitamin A, C, Iron and a little calcium. There’s only 7 calories in a cup of spinach so eat away! Flax and olive oil add some fat which is essential for energy, cushioning your organs and absorption of necessary nutrients such as vitamins A, D, E and K.
-Nutrition (per serving): Approx 90 calories, 6g fat, 2g protein and 7.5g carbohydrates.
Main: Petit filet with garlic sweet potato mash and steamed asparagus
When looking for the perfect steak opt for grass fed organic filet; most grocery stores such as Wholefoods, Bristol Farms, and Sprouts will carry grass fed beef or you could check out your local farmers market. If you don’t have anything like that by you this website is a Directory of Farms, listing more than 1300 pasture-based farms, making it the most comprehensive source for grass-fed meat and dairy products in the US and Canada: www.eatwild.com
Feel free to adjust the weights for your portions but this is what I like to do for my husband and I for a completely guilt-free meal based on eating 6 meals per day. They are just guidelines so feel free to adjust as needed as we all have different energy needs. If you are on a strict nutritional plan switch to the cut of meat suggested on your plan e.g. flank or ground beef.
• 2 petit filet steaks (I like to do 4oz for myself and 6-8oz for my husband)
• 10 oz sweet potato (4 oz female/ 6 oz male)
• 20 asparagus spears (8 female, 12 male)
• 1 crushed garlic glove
• 1/3 cup fresh chopped chives (optional)
Preparing the vegetables: Scrub the sweet potatoes and cut into about 2” slices so that they boil quicker. Leave the skin on to keep valuable nutrients and add to a pan of unsalted water (enough water to completely cover the potatoes). Boil the sweet potatoes for 20-25 minutes; you can tell they are cooked when you can easily insert a fork into them. About 10 minutes into cooking start steaming the asparagus. Drain the potatoes and then add the crushed garlic and chives, mash until creamy and well blended. You can add a couple of tbsps of unsweetened almond milk if you prefer a creamier texture.
Preparing the meat: Trim off any excess fat, although there really shouldn’t be any with this cut. About 10 minutes into boiling your sweet potatoes you should start to cook your meat. Broil, BBQ or pan sear (in a non-stick pan; you can use a tsp of olive oil if needed) the steaks to your preference. Approximately 5 to 6 minutes per side for medium. If you have a meat thermometer:
|120° – 125°
130° – 135°
140° – 145°
150° – 155°
160° and above
When the steaks are cooked to your liking, remove from the pan, cover loosely with aluminum foil and let rest 5 to 10 minutes before serving. This will allow the meat to continue to cook and the juices to redistribute. Since we are not using a sauce we want the meat to be as tender as possible. Pat with a paper towel before serving if you wish to remove any excess juices that haven’t been reabsorbed.
Serve and enjoy.
-Nutritional (per serving based on female measurements above): 328 calories, 28g carbohydrates, 38g protein, 7.5g fat
-Nutritional (per serving based on male measurements above):495 calories, 42g carbohydrates, 57g protein, 11.5 g fat
Dessert: Strawberry Protein ice-cream
Why not wait a couple of hours after your main course before serving dessert? 3 courses is a lot to eat in one sitting and this makes a great last meal of the day. I’ve listed a couple of options depending on your preferences. Personally I like to minimize my sugar intake especially at night time so don’t use fruit in mine due to the fructose.
• 2 scoops of Strawberry protein powder (e.g. Labrada Lean Pro 8 Super Premium Protein: Strawberry ice cream flavor). Try and use a protein powder that has casein as this is going to give you a sustained flow of amino acids through the night.
• 1 cup unsweetened all natural almond milk (water doesn’t work for this as it just turns to ice rather than having a creamy texture)
• 2 strawberries
• Optional 1 cup fresh or frozen strawberries
• Optional chocolate drizzle: 1 tsp organic raw cacao powder, 3 tsps water, 6 drops liquid stevia
Whisk the protein and almond milk together thoroughly, if you are adding the fresh or frozen strawberries I suggest putting everything through the blender so that the mix is smooth. Split between 2 martini or ice cream glasses and freeze for at least 3 hours. Wash the strawberries, make a slit through the centre but not all the way through so that you can place it on the rim of the glass to decorate.
Optional chocolate drizzle for decoration: This is completely and naturally sugar free! Raw cacao powder is awesome; it’s rich in antioxidants and fiber whilst being sugar free and vegan. I’ve added liquid Stevia to naturally sweeten it whilst still remaining sugar free. Decorate when the strawberry protein mix is frozen, so that it sits on the top and doesn’t sink in.
Heat 3 tsps of water and add 1 tsp of raw cacao powder and the stevia. The water needs to be hot to dissolve the cacao powder. Allow to cool for a few minutes then carefully drizzle on top of the frozen mixture. You can either serve immediately or place back in the freezer until needed.
Nutrition (per serving): Approx 230 calories, 8g fat, 13g carbohydrates, 25g protein. The calories may seem high which is why I recommend having this a couple of hours later as a meal in itself.
Hope you enjoy the meals above! And by the way, this menu makes for a perfect Valentine’s Meal Course as well!
Happy, Healthy Date Night my Lean Body People
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