Thursday, September 15, 2011

Spicy Grilled Pork Salad

I love to cook meals that are pretty to look at.  When they look nice it usually makes them taste better, too!  This recipe is similar to recipe one posted by, who I love.  She has a great blog that covers all arenas: cooking, home-keeping,  homeschooling her kids, etc, etc.... and now she even has a cooking show on the Food Network.  Her recipe uses steak, and I used pork, plus I spiced things up a bit.
But really you could use any meat that you have on hand.
So the first part of this recipe is making the marinade for your meat.  I tend to make a similar marinade each time I make one and it usually involves olive oil, soy sauce, lime juice/vinegar, brown sugar and other yummies.  But all marinades have a few requirements to work their magic.  You need an acid (vinegar, citrus juice), oil (EVOO, sesame), and flavor (herbs, spices, extracts, ginger).  The acid tenderizes the meat (can also add flavor), the oil moisturizes and of course, your flavor component adds the "wow" factor in taste.
Here's the marinade for meat that will go on top of this salad:

Brown sugar, marsala wine, soy sauce, olive oil, ginger, garlic, and lime juice

You can see me grating my fresh ginger here.  Now combine everything in a shallow pan and then add your pork chops, cover and refrigerate at least an hour.  Flip half way through.

 And here's the best secret about fresh ginger.  It's one of my favorite flavors, so I always keep it on hand.  It doesn't last that well on the counter or in the fridge, SO I keep mine in the freezer and it lasts forever!  Then when you are ready to use it, grab your microplane grater and get after it, peeling and all. It makes really fine, minced ginger and you don't even have to peel it.  A microplane grater is as essential as toilet paper!  You must have one!  They rock for hard cheeses, ginger!, chocolate, etc.  You'll get your moneys worth, I promise.  You get so much more volume from grated cheeses and such, so you'll actually save money because your block of parmesan will last Waaaaay longer.  Ok, I'm going to get off my soap box now.

Ok, moving on to the salad dressing. Put a tablespoon of honey in a coffee mug and pop it in the microwave for about 15 second or until it's liquified.  Then add your soy, oil, minced garlic, chopped jalapeno, ginger and lime juice.  Whisk it all together with a fork and set aside.  You can taste test and see if you need to adjust any flavors.

Ok, now prep your salad veggies.  I used red leaf lettuce, tomatoes, carrots and cilantro.  You can use whatever you like, but be sure to include cilantro.
Throw your chops on a hot grill. (sorry I didn't take pics of this!)

While the chops are grilling, prep your salad bowl.  Toss with salad dressing, make them pretty!

Remove your chops and let rest 5-10 minutes.  Then make thin slices of meat and place them over your salad. YUM. Dig in.

You could really use any meat here or any salad greens/veggies that you like.  Full recipe below!

Meat Marinade
1/4 c. low sodium soy sauce
1/4 c. olive oil
2 TB marsala wine, or any cooking (or drinking!) wine you like
1/4 c. packed brown sugar
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 lime, juiced
2 TB fresh ginger, grated/minced

3-4 boneless pork loin chops

Combine all ingredients in a shallow baking dish (8x8 dish or small casserole pan).  Place your meat in the dish, cover and refrigerate at least an hour (preferably 4 hours or longer).  Flip meat 1/2 way through marinade time.
Heat grill to high heat and place chops.  Cook about 5 minutes per side or until internal temp is 140 degrees.  Remove from grill and allow to rest 5-10 minutes.  Then thinly slice.

Salad Dressing:
1-2 TB honey
3 TB soy sauce
1/4 c. olive oil
2-3 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 of a jalapeno, chopped, seeds removed
2 TB ginger, minced/grated
Juice of 1 lime

Put honey in a microwave safe coffee mug.  Nuke for 15-20 seconds or until honey is liquified.  Add remaining ingredients and whisk together. Lightly toss your favorite salad greens.


  1. Yummy! Love the Ginger in the freezer!

  2. Hi Dana, very nice job on this blog! The photos are great and I'm going to try this sometime. Keep up the great blogs!

  3. Keep the comments coming. I'm glad you're reading Dr. Gee!!