Do you have a date night?
Whether you’re single, in a relationship, married, or “it’s complicated,” I think it is SO IMPORTANT to have date night.
And I’m not talking about date night with a partner. I’m talking about some quality time with Y-O-U.
I’ve already told you that my last year in college was tough.
I was finishing my undergraduate degree at William & Mary, working one full-time job, and working two part-time jobs. From 8 o’clock in the morning until 11 o’clock each evening, I was moving quickly from class to class and then to work in the evenings. That was my schedule even on the weekends, as I’d clean houses in the mornings and work at a restaurant in the afternoon and evenings!
I didn’t have time to spend with anyone except my beloved roommate, and I barely had time for anything else except for homework and sleep.
To make sure I got a little bit of me-time in between everything, I got into this habit of taking at least 30 minutes most evenings to spend some time with myself. I’d pour myself a glass of wine, make dinner, put on Netflix or turn on some music, and just relax with myself.
Through this time, I got to learn what I love to do for myself, how my thoughts work, how I process things, how I deal with stress and then how to treat that. I learned more about my likes and dislikes, my goals and desires, and my faith.
Just by taking time to listen to and date myself, I developed an incredible relationship with the person inside me!
When I moved to Richmond after graduation and didn’t know anyone and didn’t have the money to have a social life, I was so thankful that I had built up a foundation of enjoying time alone.
And when I began dating other people, I had already set such a high standard for anyone who wanted to get into my life!
I would think, “Am I going to have as good of a time with this person as I’ll have with myself? Because if not, I don’t need to settle! I can go home and enjoy my evening alone!”
Even now that I’m in a very happy, long-term relationship, I still regularly have date nights where it’s just me and myself going out to dinner, cooking at home, coloring, or watching a movie together.
I strongly believe that this contributed sooo much to my self-confidence and my health in inter-personal relationships.
No matter your situation in life or your relationship status, I strongly recommend starting or nurturing a relationship with yourself!
As is obvious by this story (and the fact that I’m an author of a food blog), date nights for me pretty much always revolve around food.
And this dish is my latest favorite date night entree.
Whether you’re having a date night with yourself or with someone else, try this spectacular (but so simple) meal!
Butter-soft sea scallops seared for just minutes are laid atop fresh arugula while they’re still hot. The heat melts the arugula just a bit, but much of it still stays fresh and crisp. It’s perfect.
With the drippings in the pan we whip up a garlicky white wine sauce and spoon that gloriousness over our scallops and greens.
Top the impressive and easy date night meal with fresh ground black pepper and/or shaved parmesan, and there you have a peppery, savory, and elegant meal that’s ready in less than 20 minutes!
Light a candle, pour a glass (or two) of wine, and serve this up to yourself or a significant other for a very special evening!
- 8 sea scallops
- 2 teaspoons fine sea salt
- 2 tablespoons + 1 teaspoon ghee or butter, divided
- 4 cups arugula
- 4 cloves garlic, diced
- 1/2 cup chicken broth
- 1/4 cup white wine
- 2 tablespoons lemon juice
- Dry both sides of the sea scallops on a layer of paper towels. Sprinkle both sides of the scallops with the sea salt and set aside.
- Divide the 4 cups of arugula between two plates.
- Over medium-high heat, melt one tablespoon of ghee or butter in a large skillet. When the butter is hot, add the scallops to the skillet. Sear the scallops for 2-3 minutes on both sides, or until a brown crust forms. Remove the pan from heat and add four scallops to each of the plates of arugula.
- To the drippings in the pan, add 1 more tablespoon of ghee or butter. Turn the heat down the medium and return the pan to the burner. When the oil is hot, add the diced garlic. Sauté the garlic, stirring often, until it is fragrant and browning, about 2-3 minutes.
- Add the chicken broth, wine, and lemon juice to the skillet. Bring the liquid mixture to a boil, then turn the heat down to medium-low. Simmer over medium-low heat until the sauce has thickened and the alcohol has cooked off, about 5 minutes. Remove the pan from heat and stir in the remaining teaspoon of ghee or butter.
- Spoon the sauce over the scallops and arugula. Top the plates with freshly ground black pepper and/or shaved parmesan cheese. Serve with crusty bread if desired.