One of the easiest way to throw together a great tasting meal is to marinate the meat and grill it. The meat takes on flavor without you needing to do anything. You just mix in a baggie and let it sit in the fridge while you head off to work, run errands, sleep overnight. You then get to cook it without heating up the house.
Marinades are pretty easy to make with ingredients most of us already have in the house so don’t worry about buying bottles of premade marinade that will just sit unloved until you throw them out. Soy sauce, a bit of sugar, some citrus juice, garlic, and a few spices are a perfect combination.
Vietnamese Barbecue Pork Salad
- 2 Tbsp low sodium soy sauce
- 1 1/2 Tbsp sambal oelek
- 1 Tbsp brown sugar
- 2 tsp minced garlic
- 16 oz pork loin chops
- 1.5 oz (42g) uncooked rice noodles
- 3/4 cup (100g) shredded or sliced carrots
- 1 cup (200g) sliced cucumbers
- 6 cups (168g) romaine lettuce
- 2 Tbsp lime juice
- 2 Tbsp (12g) PB2 or powdered peanut butter
- 2 tsp sesame oil
Mix the soy sauce, sambal oelek, brown sugar and garlic in a zip top baggie. Add the pork chops and shake to coat. Marinate the pork chops for at least 30 minutes, up to overnight, in the refrigerator.
Prepare the rice noodles according to package directions. They are usually really easy to make and involve soaking them in hot water and draining. Preheat your grill to medium heat. Remove the pork chops from the marinade and grill about 8 minutes per side until cooked thoroughly.
Toss the carrots, cucumbers, and lettuce in a large bowl and divide equally onto plates. You can also skip the tossing step, and just artfully arrange them on a plate for presentation. Top with a pork chop and rice noodles.
Combine the lime juice, PB2, and sesame oil in a small bowl. Whisk to blend. Drizzle over the salad greens and pork chop.
Makes 4 servings at approximately 357 calories each – 31g protein, 45g carbs, and 6g fat.
Sambal oelek is a great spicy condiment that is similar to sriracha but has a bit of a different zing to it. I get mine at World Market or Walmart so it’s pretty common and easy to find. If you need a few more recipes to figure out how to use sambal oelek, try Kung Pao Grilled Chicken Tacos, Grilled Miso Chicken, Ramen Noodle Soup, or Ahi Tuna Sliders. My favorite is the ramen soup.