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Sunday, March 28, 2010

Lettuce Wrap Carnitas




I owe my husband for this one. We were rushing all around one morning and both trying to get out the door for a very long day away from home. We were on our usual broken sleep pattern the previous night thanks to one of our little men that thinks sleeping is overrated. I was on my second cup of coffee and praying for mental clarity as I walked into the door jam for the second time that morning. Then I saw it... the pork tenderloin I had defrosting from last night. I just stared at it. I wasn't going to be home in time to prepare a pork tenderloin unless we planned on eating dinner at 10pm. That's when hubby noticed me... catatonic... staring... at a pork loin. I was already overwhelmed and the day hadn't even started. He came over to me, threw his arm around my shoulder and said, "Why don't you just stick it in the crock pot."

This is why I married him.

I had a few minutes before I had to bolt out the door. I've never cooked a tenderloin in the crockpot. It seems a little sacrilegious to cook such a quality piece of meat that way. But I was desperate and it was a great suggestion.

Dinner that night was a surprising hit. The pork came out moist and tasty. I dressed it up nicely into tacos. It could not have been any easier!

What you'll need:

1 pork tenderloin (this would work with chicken or meat too)
juice of 2 limes
1 T chili powder
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp coriander
1/4 tsp cinnamon
2 bay leaves
1/2 cup chicken broth (low sodium, gluten free)
1/2 a purple onion
1 green bell pepper
1 head of butter lettuce (or lettuce you can make into taco shells)
store bought pico de gallo (or make your own)
store bought guacamole (or make your own)

What you do:

Kiss your husband for being brilliant and saving dinner. Get out your 'ol faithful crockpot. Put the chicken broth in, the lime juice and the two bay leaves. In a small bowl mix up all the spices. Coat the pork with the spices and give it a little massage. Lay the pork in the crockpot and turn it on low. Cover and forget it. It should be done in five to six hours so hopefully you have a crockpot with an automatic timer. If you don't Amazon.com has them with free shipping. They are worth every penny. If you have time in the morning you can dice up the purple onion and green pepper. If not it's easy to do in the evening. Saute the onion and pepper together until crisp/tender.

When you return home you will be greeted with a wonderful aroma. It's a great feeling to know that dinner is almost ready and you don't have to put much effort into the finishing touches. Shred the pork. Get out the lettuce and put a few leaves on everyone's plate. Top with some meat, sauteed veggies, pico de gallo, and guacamole. If the kids don't like the idea of a lettuce wrap you can easily serve this in a bowl and add anything else they may like to it.

Enjoy!

p.s. For my non-southwest natvies; Pico de Gallo is a fresh salsa made with tomato, onion, jalapeƱo, cilantro and lime. If you can't find it sub it with some high quality jarred salsa.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Pork Chop with Apple, Walnut, Sausage Stuffing







This little beauty is quick and to the point which is just what I needed tonight. I spent the day with the ladies at a clinic called Rx Stars. Every one of the ladies is a positive and friendly force to be reckoned with. The energy in these clinics is amazing. If you live in the So Cal area, I highly recommend you come and join us. A high fitness level is not a requirement. All you have to do is bring your can do, kick ass attitude. You will leave a better person.

So after about 80 snatches, 5 rope climbs and a WOD called "Survivor" (I almost didn't), life still goes on in my home and I have to make dinner. Feeling like an elated version of a Gumby/new baby deer combo, I waddle and waiver over to the kitchen. I still can't feel my legs... damn squat clean thrusters, but I also can't wipe the smile off my face. I'm glad dinner is an easy one tonight!

What you'll need:
4 pork chops (about 1 inch thickness)
2 sweet Italian sausages
1 granny smith apple (don't substitute), chopped
a handful of walnuts, finely chopped
2 tsp dried, rubbed sage
pepper
1/2 cup white wine or chicken stock

What you do:

Remove you sausage from the casing and pan fry. If you have a mini chopper, throw the sausage in there to make it into a fine consistency (or chop by hand). Chop up your apple and the walnuts. Put these three ingredients in a bowl and mix together.

Cut a pocket through the center of the pork chop leaving 3 sides intact. Rub each pork chop with some sage and sprinkle some pepper on both sides of the meat. Now take the stuffing mix and scoop it into the chop. It helps if you secure the open end with some toothpicks to keep the stuffing inside.

Get a pan hot and brown the chops quickly on both sides. Not too long now... you just want to brown them, not cook them. Transfer them into a pan and add 1/2 cup white wine or chicken stock. Cover with foil and bake the chops for about 15 to 20 minutes. Be careful! Pork dries out easily so don't over cook them. Remove them from the oven and keep the pan covered for 10 minutes to allow the chops to rest. Serve with a fresh veggie for a quick and tasty meal.

Enjoy!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Pad Thai -- Well, sort of...




Let me kick this off by saying Pad Thai is one of my all time favorite meals. Traditionally it's made with rice noodles, bean sprouts, some type of meat or seafood (or heaven help us... tofu) and a to die for sauce that usually has brown sugar and a mountain of salt. Oh, and let's not forget the crushed peanuts. This meal is a paleo disaster and then some. There is absolutely nothing good that can come out of this dish.

For a while I was using it as my cheat meal. Every time we would go out for Thai food, I would order a giant portion of Pad Thai and leave nothing behind but the plate. And then it would hit me... that bloated, miserable feeling from the carb insurgency and pure sugar assault. After the initial bloat, I would get miserably tired and come down with a huge headache. Pad Thai never did this to me before starting paleo. I have since learned that this meal is the equivalent of a gastro-intestinal Hannibal Lechter. It entices you with it's charm and alure and when you least expect it, it eats your guts and leaves you reeling and clinging to life wishing you had never known the name Pad Thai (or Hannibal Lechter for that matter).

So I was at a cross roads. I knew Pad Thai was no longer a welcome dish in my meal plan, but I love the flavor and the texture so very much. There was only one option to consider. Remake Pad Thai into a paleo friendly version.

What you'll need:
1 pound of cooked large shrimp or you can use any meat you wish
1/2 a head of cabbage finely shredded (use a mandolin if you have one)
1 onion finely sliced (mandolin)
3 ribs of celery sliced on the diagonal
2 bell peppers, sliced into thin strips (use 2 different colors)
1 bunch of green onions, sliced into 2 inch pieces (separate whites from greens)
2 eggs
lime wedges
a small handful of cashews
coconut oil

for the sauce:
2 T. sesame oil
3 T. olive oil
1 T. chili garlic sauce (made by Huy Fong Foods available at grocery store)
1 tsp grated fresh ginger
1 T. lime or more to taste
you may want to double this sauce if you want more intense flavor

What you do:

Start off by making a simple omelet from the eggs and shred it into thin strips. Next, heat a large saute pan with coconut oil. Add in all the veggies except for the onion greens. Saute quickly at high heat until veggies are crisp/tender. Once the veggies are done add the onion greens, shrimp and sauce and stir until shrimp are heated through. Not too long now... you want shrimp not rubber.

Place into shallow serving bowls and top with a few cashews and additional lime wedges. If you want to get all crazy you can chop some cilantro and add it over the top. It's a great flavor... I just didn't have any. This is a great dish that is Pad Thai-esque. The cabbage turns out to be quite noodlie and I can breath easy knowing that my craving is satisfied without the empty carbs, sodium explosion and sugar rush. I hope you like this as much as I do.

Enjoy!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Paleo can make you fat -- Muffin in disguise





Yes, it's true. Paleo eating can make you fat. That's a pretty bold statement, you say? Yes, I would agree. But alas my friends, it is true.

It's not what we eat. It's not the lean meats, veggies, nuts and seeds and fruit. It's not the prescribed exercise that goes along with it. If we examine the way the caveman ate, there is virtually no way he could have gotten fat. It's how we eat today. What has happened is that we have taken modern eating into consideration and thrown portion size out the window. There is a misnomer that goes along with "unweighed and unmeasured" paleo eating. And that is the idea that we can eat all day long like gluttons and we will come out on the other side unscathed.

I will concede to the fact that it is very hard to overeat protein. It's even hard to overeat vegetables. It's a little easier to overeat fruit and incredibly easy to overeat nuts and dried fruit. Now try this one on for size...

I just made the most delicious muffins on the planet. They come from a website called www.paleoplan.com. This website is actually genius. They figure all of it out for you for a fee. There are preplanned menus, shopping lists, recipes, you name it, it's in there. What a great idea! I can think of nothing easier in the world than logging on and pressing a button and having my meals for an entire week or more planned complete with shopping list. I don't know how any of the other meals taste, but these muffins are pure heaven.

So let's examine the ingredients of said muffins. There's almond flour, bananas, dates, coconut oil, walnuts, spices, eggs, carrot, etc. All the ingredients qualify as paleo. All of the ingredients are healthy and nutritious. There's another common denominator here: All of the ingredients (except the carrot) are highly caloric. I don't know how many actual calories these muffins have in them but I can imagine it's off the charts. And then it gets even better. I dare you to make these and then just eat one. It's impossible. They are so good they take your breath away at first bite. I have to admit, I knew this going in because I had a bite of my friend Marc's at sectionals and they have been on my mind ever since. I broke down and made them this morning. I inhaled two of them in less than 90 seconds. When I get the courage to re-enter the kitchen I'm going to bag them up and bury them in the backyard. Talk about dangerous!

So what's my point in all this? Just because something is made with paleo ingredients and it beats it's conventional counterpart (the mega-muffin or bagel) in nutrition and quality does not give us the right to eat it with abandon. We have to use common sense and know our calorie contents.

A long while back I posted about Taco Bell and how they are duping us into believing you can have a lean body by eating their "diet" menu. The girl on the commercial had cut her calories down to 1200 per day. My argument was that anyone could loose weight on that little amount of calories (but, ooohhhh the rebound. Get ready to gain it all back plus some). The inverse is true of paleo eating. If we don't stay conscious while we are shoveling food in, even if it is paleo, we will gain weight.

So here is my plea. To be successful on paleo, you don't have to weigh and measure. But you DO have to be conscious. Just because the ingredients are paleo does not give us the right to eat unlimited quantities of food. If you want to make these muffins, go for it. Like I said, they are divine. But have one as an occasional treat. Try to pair it with some protein. I guarantee if you eat these day after day, they will blunt your results.

That's my rant for the day! Now, off to CrossFit

Monday, March 15, 2010

Breaded Chicken Cutlets




Today was crazy. Wait... I think I say that every day. For now, I will blame the time change because it seems that the extra hour we were robbed of is growing exponentially, but only in my home. Perhaps the hour of loss is directly related to the pile of laundry that magically appeared right in front of the washing machine. It must have been some type of time warp where my family changed their clothing 400 times. Could I have been in a coma? I just did laundry!!! How does this keep happening? It doesn't help that my washing machine is in my kitchen. It's not even behind a door. It's right there... staring at me... taunting me. It's laughing at my neurotic nuance called task completion, knowing that I will never be done with laundry until I take my last breath. It knows it has won. I bow my head in defeat and feed the hungry beast for the fourth time today.

I owe this blog to my washing machine. I owe this blog to my dirty dishes, my piles of paper, my dust bunnies, dog hair and bath tub ring. I owe this blog to my two beautiful twin boys who keep me running from sun up to sun down and quite often from sun down to sun up. If it weren't for all of the aforementioned I would have a leisurely life. I could spend hours in the kitchen creating divine four course meals set on beautiful china. And you wouldn't be the least bit interested, would you.

You see, I understand that you have no time just like I have no time and that is why I do what I do. So let's get in the kitchen and make some super yummy chicken cutlets. It was originally going to be fried chicken but it just didn't turn out that way. When things go south in my kitchen, I don't get to upset about it. I just turn the dish into something else. This time it turned out to be a delicious bonus. I hope you enjoy it!

What you'll need:

free range chicken breasts
1 small coconut yogurt plain flavor
3 cloves garlic, crushed
2 cups almond meal
2 T Italian seasoning
2 T parsley
2 tsp onion powder
2 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp red pepper flakes (omit for the kiddies)
ice and water
coconut oil

What you do:

Get out one deep bowl and two shallow bowls. Put ice and water in the deep bowl. In the second bowl mix your yogurt and three crushed garlic cloves together. In the third bowl mix the almond meal with the next five ingredients. Now take your chicken and soak it in the ice water for ten minutes. Really cold chicken holds the breading better. Next take the chicken out and pat dry. Butterfly the breasts and pound the thick part of the breast down so they are even and thin. Coat the breast with yogurt and then the almond mixture.

Get your pan hot with the coconut oil and fry up these little guys. They only take a couple of minutes per side. Drain on a paper towel if necessary.

There you have it! No, it's not fried chicken... I have to re-engineer that one. But it is all kinds of yummy. The yogurt keeps the chicken moist and gives a hint of tang while the spices wake up the senses. Just in time too... I think I heard the washer buzz.

Enjoy!

Friday, March 12, 2010

Braciole at lightening speed







Braciole... what the heck is that! Well, let me tell you. Braciole (pronounced braw chawl) is an Italian dish of thin beef or veal wrapped around a filling and baked in wine and tomato sauce. Did I get your attention? Sounds great, doesn't it?

The major problem with making this dish is that it takes a small army and all day to prepare it. First of all, that counts me out immediately. Secondly, it sends me back in time... back to where the level of chaos in my house was at an all time low. Back to where I had the time to spend reading different recipes and not having a matchbox car driven by two year old fingers all over the pages. No one was screaming. There were no battles for attention. No snacks, no runny noses, no songs about going potty... just me and my cookbook...

But there were also no wide eyed smiles, no tugging on my pant leg, no chubby bodies with little dents in the wrists and knees. There were no tiny cuddles and squeals of delight. I must admit, sometimes I long for the days of me and my cookbook, but I'll take the latter any day. Being a new mother (again) is the hardest and most rewarding thing I have ever done.

So in the best interest of my children, I have taken the traditional braciole recipe and cut the prep and cooking time considerably. The essence of the recipe is still there. The intense manual labor is not. With a few short cuts, you'll have an incredible, Italian delight on your table in about 30 minutes.

What you'll need:
1 piece of grass fed sirloin tip steak per serving
2 cloves garlic, minced
pine nuts
ground black pepper
1 red bell pepper (or you can buy roasted red peppers in the jar)
1 bag of spinach
strips of sun dried tomato in olive oil
1 cup of red wine
1 large can crushed tomato
1 T. Italian seasoning
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder

What you do:

Start by roasting your red pepper on the open flame of your stove. Lay the pepper directly on the flame and wait for the skin to blister and turn black. Turn it until all sides are blackened and the pepper is soft. Put the blackened pepper in a paper sack and close it tightly. Remember to make sure your pepper is not on fire before placing it in the bag... it's kind of hard to explain yourself out of that one. Let the pepper sit in the bag for 10 minutes. Rip open the bag and slide your hand over the surface of the pepper to peel the blackened skin off. Cut off the top and bottom ends of the pepper, slice it open and cut out the seed pod. Go ahead... take a little bite. This glorious flavor is what a freshly roasted red pepper tastes like. Admit it, it's heaven.

Next you'll want to pound the steaks to about 1/4" thickness. Lay out a piece of flattened steak. Put some pepper on it. Divide the minced garlic up evenly among the steaks and press the garlic into the steak. Sprinkle a few pine nuts over the steak and press them into the meat. Now lay a slice of that glorious roasted pepper over the steak. Things are getting interesting, aren't they. Next goes a small handful of spinach followed by a few strips of sun dried tomato. Roll that baby up the best you can and secure it with toothpicks.

Get a heavy skillet hot with olive oil and brown the rolled meat on all sides quickly. Remove the meat to a plate. Next put in your cup of wine. Notice the wine bottle has about three more cups in it. What ever will you do with all that luscious wine? Resist the urge to conceal it in a brown paper bag while slumping down in your kitchen like a derelict. It will go really well with the dinner when it's done. Just another 30 minutes... you can do it. Reduce the wine on high heat until about 1/2 a cup remains. Add the tomato sauce, Italian seasoning, garlic and onion powders. Give it a stir. You may want to hold on to the side of the stove before smelling this broth. It's quite possible you will loose consciousness from the awe-inspiring aroma.

Once you have your broth mixed together place the meat back in the pan and spoon some broth over the meat. Cover it and turn the flame down low. Leave it for ten minutes and then turn the meat over. Baste it, cover it, and let it go another ten minutes.

Serve this beautiful dish with a nice green veggie and don't forget the wine. You wouldn't want it to go to waste now, would you?

Enjoy!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Burgers the Yummy Way... and a recipe contest!


Warning: This picture was meant to make you laugh. Do not attempt. Results ARE typical.

Specialty hamburgers are sooooo much better than throwing a plain old hunk of meet on the grill. You can put almost anything in a burger to make it better. I make up a bunch of burgers for my lunches and eat them several days a week. That way I am always prepared... okay, that's a bold faced lie. The truth is I am never prepared. I struggle everyday with a schedule that is way to full for one woman. I am a hamster on the wheel of life. It seems like every day I am faced with a snake in my hamster cage, trying to devour my hamster self. Some days it's a little Garter snake, while others may as well be an Anaconda. But since Anaconda's usually eat Water Buffalo, I figure I am too scrawny to be too much of a meal. So I may hide my head for a moment but ultimately I come out of my hamster hiding, eyes bulging and ready to face what the Universe has to offer.

So the latest Primal Mama news is that both of our twins have to have their tonsils out and tubes put in their ears. They haven't been well for more than a week since November. We've been put on house arrest by the Pediatrician. Gone are our days of going to Knott's Berry Farm, the bounce house, petting zoo... preschool, you know... all those things that break up the day and keep mom sane. So if anyone out their has an idea for me to help pass the day indoors or in our yard while cut off from society, I would welcome it with open arms. The boys are two-years old but keep in mind they are behind a bit... so nothing too complicated please!

Alright! Back to burgers. Not much in life makes me happier than seeing a huge burger on my plate. Just because you remove the bun does not mean all the burgery goodness is gone. So let's take a walk down the lane of burger possibilities. The following are a couple of choices you can make. Now her comes the big news:

Primal Mama is having a burger recipe contest!
rules:
Starting right now through 10pm pacific time on March 13, post your best burger recipe to the comments section of this post. It can be anything you come up with but must follow the primal rules. So no dairy, no gluten, no grains. I'm not a purist so if you want to use vinegar or soy sauce like I do, that's perfectly fine. Just make sure they are gluten free. The winner will be chosen at random by a secret panel of judges. (Oooohhhh sounds so intriguing) The winning burger recipe will be posted on my FaceBook fan page. The winner will also get a little Primal Mama kitchen gift pack. Items to be determined by.... ME!

Sooo, Here are my best burgers:

Meat loaf burger:

one pound grass fed ground beef
one egg
1/2 small can tomato paste
1 T. Dijon mustard
1/2 tsp garlic powder
2 green onions, sliced into little rounds
1 tsp soy sauce (gluten free)
Guacamole

Mix all ingredients together with your hands and shape into patties. Grill or pan fry and serve with guacamole on top.

Greek Burger:
1/2 pound ground lamb
1/2 pound grass fed beef
2 T. dried mint
1/4 cup pine nuts
4 chopped pepperoncinis (Greek peppers)
1 minced roasted red bell pepper (in the jar or do your own)
1 or 2 fresh cloves of garlic, crushed
one egg
sliced tomato and cucumber to top burger
Dressing:
1 T. tahini (sesame paste, looks like peanut butter available at TJ's or health food stores)
1/4 cup olive oil
1 lemon
1/2 tsp garlic powder

Mix all burger ingredients together and grill or pan fry. Make dressing by whisking all dressing ingredients together. Top the burger with slices of tomato and cucumber. Top with dressing.

These are just two of many variations on the burger. Let's see what you come up with!

Enjoy!

Friday, March 5, 2010

Szechuan Chicken and Veggies




I don't really know if this is actually "Szechuan" but it sounded like a good title. I couldn't think of anything else mostly due to the fact that I am fairly certain that I have incurred slight brain damage. You see... I have been fighting inflexibility of my joints due too lots of CrossFit and little stretching. I don't recommend it. I've gone from slightly less than Gumby to what feels like an old, arthritic woman. Oh... wait...I am an old, arthritic woman...

So what's an old, arthritic woman to do but try to increase her flexibility with a nice dose of Bikram Yoga. Just in case you are not familiar with Bikram Yoga, it's the type of yoga that is done in 200 degree heat (I exaggerate, but that is what it feels like). The instructor is borderline militant while taking you through 26 different poses that require ultimate control both mentally and physically. You're not allowed to leave the room even if you feel like you are going to black out, have a stroke and crap your pants all at the same time.

I couldn't imagine doing this on my own so I convinced my honey to go with me. I had a small idea of what to expect... he was blind sided. If I had been angry with him Bikram Yoga would have been the perfect revenge. But I wasn't. All I could do was occasionally glance over at him doing his best to wrap his arms around his chest three times while simultaneously standing on one leg in a full squat with the other leg wrapped around his body in the opposite direction. Oh and breathe deeply through his nose only. Are you kidding me? Breathe??? He was a trooper. He not only lasted the entire class, he could actually do most of the poses . I was duly impressed.

In the end we had a good laugh. We talked about mental toughness and breaking barriers in CrossFit. Bikram Yoga is definitely a way to surmount the aforementioned barriers. Remember the saying in CF about the "unknown and unknowable"? Bikram Yoga would be a great way to experience this. After my rave review above, I fully expect everyone to try it. No, I'm not kidding. The feeling of accomplishment is amazing. (Or maybe I'm confusing that with the shear joy that it's over and we survived). You will gain more flexibility, balance and a mental strength that takes you to a new level. Besides, it's just plain good for you. So get out there and give it a whirl... even if you loose a few brain cells the first couple of times.

And now... Szechuan Chicken!

What you'll need:

Free Range Chicken Breasts
5 T. low sodium soy sauce (gluten free)
2 T. rice vinegar (no sugar, no salt)
1 T. sesame oil
1 T. powdered ginger
1 T. Chili Oil (trader joe's)
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
1/2 tsp garlic powder
one or two red bell peppers
a bunch of green onions
a few slivered almonds

What you do:

Cut the chicken into bite sized chunks. Slice the bell pepper into thick strips and cut the green onions into two inch lengths. Mix the rest of the ingredients into a marinade. Pour the marinade over the chicken and mix it up. Let the chicken soak while you saute the vegetables. Once the veggies are crisp tender add the chicken to the pan. Make sure the pan is hot. You want to cook the chicken quickly.

Taste. If you want extra heat go ahead and add some more red pepper flakes. Plate it and sprinkle a few slivered almonds over the top. This is an easy and oh so spicy dish. Perfect for when you are sure that most of your brain cells have gone missing.

Enjoy!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Italian Beef




Italian beef is something of an art. It is usually cooked low and slow with lots of spices and peppers and is oh so yummy. It's served on a giant toasted roll with melted mozzarella... ahhh...

You were thinking it, weren't you? I can see the thought bubble above your head right now. "She's actually going to make a recipe where we can have a roll?... and... cheese? Um... that would be... NO! Any one who had that thought should immediately do 25 burpees . You probably just gained 5 pounds for merely thinking about bread!

Truth be told you are trading in a huge toasted roll for the opportunity to add years of quality health to your life. When you look at it like that, the importance of the bread is reduced to a non-issue. The roast is still tangy and delicious. It still falls apart effortlessly. It still melts in your mouth. So stop being a baby. You don't need the roll (or the cheese for that matter).

You can use just about any roast you want but keep in mind that chuck is the fattiest. Sirloin or round work great. If you have 33 additional seconds in your morning you can make this roast. So I say go for it!

What you'll need:

a 3 to 4 pound roast
2 T Italian seasoning
3 cloves crushed garlic
1 jar sliced pepperoncinis - 16oz
1 can low sodium beef broth (gluten free)

What you do:

Get out your old faithful crock pot. Spray the bowl with olive oil so you don't have to scrub it into the next century. Now pay close attention... here comes the tricky part...

Put the roast in. Put the can of broth in. Put the jar of peppers in with the liquid. Sprinkle the roast with Italian seasoning and crushed garlic. Set the crockpot on low and walk away. Whew! That was tough. You'd better go take a nap! Let that sucker cook on low all day. It's very forgiving. You can let it go for up to 15 hours and it will be fine. I cook mine for about 10 hours. If it's easy to shred, it's done.

You can slice it or shred it and serve it right on a plate with your veggie of choice.

And there you have another quick, easy meal for your way too busy life.

Enjoy!

Monday, March 1, 2010

Chili Lime Pork Tenderloin





Today's idea for chili lime pork is rooted in a recipe that my friend Dan emailed me. I didn't have some of the ingredients it called for so I took what I had in the cupboard and made it my own. The spirit of the recipe is still there but I have drastically reduced the honey and added a few of my own spices. You can do this too. Don't have exactly what the recipe calls for? Improvise!

This recipe stays true to the theme of "get in, get it going, and get out fast!" Who has time for anything more than that especially on a Monday.

What you'll need:

Pork Tenderloin (I used 2 1/2 pounds)

Marinade:

3 T. honey
2T. Chili powder
Juice of one lime
Zest of one lime
1/2 tsp garlic powder

What you do:

Preheat your oven to 425. In a small bowl mix the marinade ingredients. Remove the pork from its package and trim off the visible fat and silver skin. Get out your roasting pan and line it with foil. That is, unless you like to spend your highly coveted free time scrubbing off baked on honey. Plop your tenderloin in the pan and pour the marinade over it. Rub it all over. No... you should not take a bite already even though it looks fantastic and smells even better. Raw pork is no bueno.

Bake the tenderloin for about 20 minutes per pound. I like brush it with the marinade a couple of times during the cooking process. I have no idea if brushing it does anything but it helps with the guilt from this recipe being so easy. So brush away!

Get out a plate and a length of aluminum foil. When the pork comes out, transfer it to the foil and wrap it up tightly in the foil while simultaneously using your ninja-like reflexes to block your family from trying to taste it. Let the pork rest in the foil for about 10 minutes to reabsorb all its juices. Guard it well. It's not safe. Nobody touches it until it's done resting... capiche?

After the pork nap is done, slice it in one inch thicknesses and serve with some veggies.

** Just a side note: If you want to throw this together in the morning and let it marinade in a bag in the fridge, it's even better. I was on emergency dinner mode when I put this one together.

Enjoy!