So summer. I can't get enough. Everywhere I go I'm all like OMG I SMELL SUNSCREEN, let's go in the water! Even though I'm at the supermarket.
I get excited over a lot of things in the summer. Liiiike, thunderstorms, morning coffee on the deck, day dresses, running outside, and grilling. Endless grilling. And dinner salads! Endless dinner salads. In the interest of combining all my loves, I have considered grilling dinner out on the deck in the middle of a storm while sporting my favorite summer dress that I wear almost every day like a 3-year-old because it makes me feel pretty.
I've also considered posting another summer dinner salad recipe on here, but I don't want you to punch me in the funny bone.
You know what summer thing I'm not excited about? The giant cicada-eating bee that landed on the baby carriage the other day while we were out for a walk which, upon closer inspection, was in the process of EATING a cicada. How does one deal with such a nightmare without flipping the eff out? What should I have done? Poked it with a 2-foot stick? Sling shot? Husband eye roll in three...two...there it is.
In other news, I also get excited by the take-out fake-out in the summer. You know, take-out-inspired meals that you can easily make at home? Yeah, you do. This kind of meal is magical on a summer Friday or Saturday night if you don't feel like going out, if you're trying to save up some calories for S'mores, or if your favorite summer dress is in the wash and you have no back-up plan for leaving your house clothed. You know?
This is the kind of meal you make while your glass of white wine keeps refilling itself and the sun doesn't go down 'til at least 8:30pm. Or the kind of meal you make on a Monday night when your belly and attitude are in need of a take-out-style bear hug.
This recipe makes you marinate pork in a light peanut sauce, slice it up, and then toss it with fresh vegetables and savory noodles. Doesn't that sound delightful? Get to it, then add it to your ever-growing list of things to get excited about this summer.
Peanut Pork and Noodles
Adapted from Family Circle
1/3 c rice vinegar
4 tbs creamy peanut butter
3 tbs water
3 tbs low-sodium soy sauce
2 tbs honey
1 tbs minced garlic
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp garlic-chili paste (sambal oelek)
1 lb thin-sliced, boneless pork chops
1/2 lb soba noodles
1 c snow peas, strings removed, sliced
1 c baby bok choy, sliced crosswise
1 red pepper, thinly sliced
2 tbs fresh cilantro, chopped
In a small bowl, combine the vinegar, peanut butter, water, soy sauce, honey, garlic, ginger, and chili paste. Whisk until smooth and set aside. Combine the pork chops and 1/3 c of the reserved dressing in a resealable plastic bag. Marinate at least 15 minutes.
Heat your grill or a grill pan to medium-high heat. Remove the pork from the marinade, and discard the marinade. Grill for 3-4 minutes or until cooked through, turning once halfway through. Transfer to a cutting board, and slice into thin strips. Set aside.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil and cook the soba noodles per the package instructions. For the last minute of cooking time, add the snow peas and bok choy and cook for one minute. Drain the noodles and vegetables well, and place the mixture into a large bowl.