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The vegetarian/meat eater divide... please help!

(50 Posts)
spicyelephant Wed 15-Mar-17 12:36:38

I'm mainly posting in AIBU for traffic but am quite willing to accept i'm being unreasonable for being a completely unimaginative chef!

I've always been vegetarian and my boyfriend loves meat with a passion. Things have been tough recently, I've been a bit of a nightmare and he's really pulled through for me and been fantastic and incredibly supportive. I really want to surprise him and treat him to a steak dinner. (With an ironic nod towards steak and blowjob day!) Basically I want to do something lovely for him.

So.... here's the thing, what on earth do I cook?! I don't want to just sit and stare at him while he eats. I was thinking of doing dauphinoise potatoes and roasted veg kebabs as side dishes as that could be my meal? Do you have any alternatives you do for vegetarians when cooking a meat heavy meal?

Also, I've never cooked steak before but how hard can it be?

Please let me know any hints and tips you have. (Also feel free to share any stories of when dinner dates went horrifically wrong!)

PlymouthMaid1 Wed 15-Mar-17 12:42:20

I might be wrong but I find steak hard to cook - i am a vegetarian but will cook meat for OH if i dontt have to handle it as such. i always get hom to oversee it as quite easy to overcook and as it is a treat you dont want to bugger it up - make sure you know how well done or not he likes it.

And yes, i think a lovely potato dish with something for you extra is great - veg kebabs may mean that just have veg for dinner though - what about something with protein in it (put some halloumi on the skewers too?)

Astoria7974 Wed 15-Mar-17 12:43:43

Quorn do peppered meatfree steaks. They are gorgeous.

CaoNiMartacus Wed 15-Mar-17 12:44:46

Save yourself the hassle and just don't bother!

IamFriedSpam Wed 15-Mar-17 12:46:26

Halloumi steak on one of those giant mushrooms.

MarklahMarklah Wed 15-Mar-17 12:46:36

If you eat quorn then they do a 'peppered steak'. So you could have that, he could have the steak and you both get the side dishes. I'd do salad, new potatoes and perhaps some coleslaw but that's just my preference.
Or, you could go with the kebabs as a side and perhaps do something cheesy (if you eat cheese) to bulk up your side of the meal.

BTW, I've never cooked steak either but, as you say, it can't be that difficult! smile

LoupGarou Wed 15-Mar-17 12:47:55

I slice extra firm tofu in to steak style slices, marinade in a mixture of sundries tomato oil, tamari and black pepper, and then grill. It used to work really well, except DH and DS both love it too and kept nabbing mine hmm

Ginkypig Wed 15-Mar-17 12:49:25

I don't eat meat my dp definitely does!

If we're eating together we build a meal so that generally we have the same thing except he has steak, pork, lamb etc and I have veg kebabs, quorn, nut cutlet etc.

So for example we will both have potatoes or couscous or chips (or whatever) then he will have his meat and il have my non-meat

LoupGarou Wed 15-Mar-17 12:49:35

I don't find steak hard to cook but I am pretty well versed in cooking meat and fish. If you keep checking it regularly and get your DP to check how he likes it too you should be fine smile

Eatingcheeseontoast Wed 15-Mar-17 12:49:56

Steak doesn't take long - 3 mins each side. So I'd be tempted to suggest he cooks it the way he likes it while you do everything else.

Steak is quite hard to cook if you aren't a meat eater and haven't cooked it before.

BorpBorpBorp Wed 15-Mar-17 12:50:06

Steaks usually tell you on the packet how to cook them - usually cook on a high heat for 1 min each side, then a medium heat for a certain no. of minutes each side (e.g. 3 for rare, 4 for medium, 5 for well done). The biggest danger with a steak is overcooking it, so do watch the clock.

Stuffed portobello mushrooms for you?

StoatofDisarray Wed 15-Mar-17 12:51:13

I'm an avid meat eater and my DP is a vegan. When he wants to treat me, he takes me to a good steak restaurant. We both order what we want from the menu, and the house isn't full of meaty smells afterwards. No washing up, either.

Steak isn't hard to cook, but it's hard to cook properly if you're not used to it. Buying a good piece of steak makes a difference, but then again, you might ruin it.

Take the stress out of the situation - take him out!

someonestolemynick Wed 15-Mar-17 12:55:18

I'm a meat eater in a relationship with a pescetarian and I think your plan sounds lovely.
I would however say that steak is tough choice as a start as it requires a lot of handling and everyone likes their steam differently cooked.
I once cried tears of gratitude when my DP cooked me chicken and chorizo ravioli when I was sick hungover. So maybe have a look around M&S or Waitrose for a meat dish that you only need to shove in the oven and get your self a veggie dish to go with it.
If you go down the steak route I'd suggest having some veggie burgers/sausages etc. Quorn escalopes are really nice and work in a meaty context. Or make some falafel for yourself as your "meat".

rosettesforjill Wed 15-Mar-17 12:56:10

I often do stuffed mushrooms with steak - those big portobello ones with cream cheese mixed with loads of garlic and mixed dried herbs, bit of Parmesan/veggie alternative on top, in the oven for 15 minutes at 175. One for him and two for you should be filling enough for you! Then chips (I normally do baked sweet potato and normal potato) and some creamed spinach if you're feeling enthusiastic!

NennyNooNoo Wed 15-Mar-17 12:57:11

What a thoughtful and selfless idea. A tip: for steak, the pan needs to be really hot before you put the steak in. If it put it in too early, you'll lose the juices. And as everyone else has said, don't overlook. Sirloin is probably the best cut.

Do you like mushrooms? I think the flavour goes well with steak, so you could do a mushroom dish as a side for him which could also work as your main eg giant mushrooms stuffed with garlic with maybe cheese and breadcrumbs added for the main course.

someonestolemynick Wed 15-Mar-17 12:58:11

Or stuffed mushrooms or peppers for you.

kali110 Wed 15-Mar-17 13:01:19

I don't think steak is hard to cook ( and i don't cook a lot of meat) i either fry it for a few minutes or shove it on the lean grill grin
Just depends how well done he likes his meat.
I like mine burnt to a crisp so i cook it a few minutes longer than the packets suggests.

PinkFlamingo545 Wed 15-Mar-17 13:05:11

Steak doesn't take long - 3 mins each side...Steak is quite hard to cook if you aren't a meat eater and haven't cooked it before

Is that supposed to be a contradiction in one post - steaks dead easy to cook, but no its really difficult

No it isn't, you whack it in a pan for a few in mins each side- if anyone finds that hard they should perhaps order a takeaway

LiviaDrusillaAugusta Wed 15-Mar-17 13:07:27

Steak is hard to get right (rare, medium, well done) - I love it but can never cook it right!

LaContessaDiPlump Wed 15-Mar-17 13:11:45

Vegan here with an omnivore DH - I second the call to go out! Otherwise Linda McCartney does a good vegetarian range (as do Fry's). If you are not keen on processed stuff weirdo then cheese on a massive portobello mushroom would indeed fit the bill.

highinthesky Wed 15-Mar-17 13:12:13

OMG the one thing I couldn't compromise on as a vegetarian is having meat in the house, let alone handling / cooking it. Even the smell of it makes me feel quite sick.

If you want to do something lovely for him you have plenty of other options other than feed him meat.

Eatingcheeseontoast Wed 15-Mar-17 13:13:23

pinkflamingo not a contradictions - it's quick but that doesn't make it easy.

Wex Wed 15-Mar-17 13:14:59

You have to have chips with steak. It's the law.
As a meat eater just learning how to cook veggie for one member of the family I plan to serve lentil Sloppy-Joes for the veggie next time I do steak.

It's very easy to ruin steak, over cook it and it's tough and horrible. Buy fillet steak, it's the most expensive but you need a smaller piece. You need to know how he likes it cooked - what does he say in a restaurant?
Make sure everything else is almost ready including the diners before you start to cook it.

YetAnotherSpartacus Wed 15-Mar-17 13:15:29

I make these

I have a variation with caramelised onion and cheddar.

Re steaks... buy good quality, get a good steak pan, look up 'perfect steak recipes' and leave him to it. They only take 8 minutes or so.

alltouchedout Wed 15-Mar-17 13:17:26

DH is a meat eater and I am vegetarian. If I want to cook him something lovely, I tend to make him a meat heavy Polish dish (because he's Polish), bigos being a quick route to his heart. Or do a roast and then I have all the sides (the potatoes were always my favourite bit of the meal even in the days I ate some meat) so we're still sharing the meal.

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