Easy Friday entertaining

Friday night can be a tough night for having company but we wanted to play paddle tennis last night and have our playing partners (and two daughters) over for dinner after.  The grilled hoisin pork is a great company dinner – I made the marinade the night before so it just needed to be grilled.  We served it with rice and a salad with Ginger dressing.  Our friends brought some delicious smoked salmon pinwheels as an appetizer and thanks to my new practice of freezing leftover baked goods, I had some brownies and some cookies in the freezer.  (We also had leftover pizza from our last delivery in the pizza for the girls.)  All we had to do was grill the pork, microwave the rice and toss the salad.  The result – a fun and relaxing Friday night dinner with friends!

 

Ginger dressing

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 TB fresh ginger, minced
  • 3/8 cup olive oil
  • 1/8 cup water
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1/8 cup rice vinegar
  • 1 1/2 TB honey
Shake all ingredients in a jar and use on salad.  (I used Green leaf lettuce, shredded carrot, water chestnuts and crispy Lo Mein noodles in the salad.)

Grilled Hoisin Pork

  • 1 jar of Hoisin sauce
  • 3 TB honey
  • 2 TB sherry
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 pork tenderloin

Combine Hoisin sauce, honey, sherry and sesame oil in a small saucepan and heat, stirring for about 5 minutes until thick.  Let cool.  Use about 1/2 of the marinade on the pork and refrigerate for 4 -6 hours (or overnight).  Grill pork about 10 minutes or until 140 on a meat thermometer.  Heat remaining sauce and serve with pork.

Something new

We wanted something new tonight and something on the healthy side since tomorrow will be a big eating day.  We made a Chinese Chicken salad and it was wonderful.  This would be a great casual summer dinner since most of the work can be done ahead of time.  We thought the flavors would also be good with seafood – shrimp, scallops or fish.   The dressing has a nice little kick and would be good on noodles, served cold.  I’m going to show you the picture first and then I’ll give you the recipe:

Chinese Chicken Salad

Dressing

  • 3 TB low sodium soy sauce
  • 3 TB rice vinegar
  • 1/4 cup chicken stock
  • 3 TB smooth peanut butter
  • 1 TB brown sugar
  • 1 TB finely chopped fresh ginger
  • 1 chipotle pepper in adobo sauce (save the rest in a glass jar in the refrigerator for chipotle mayo and that wonderful marinade)
  • 2 tsp sesame oil

Combine all ingredients in a blender or mix well in a bowl.  (If mixing in a bowl, mince the chipotle pepper.)

Salad

  • 1 cup sliced red cabbage
  • 1 cup sliced romaine lettuce
  • 1 carrot, grated
  • 1/2 cup trimeed snow peas
  • 1 TB chopped cilantro
  • 3 thinly sliced scallions
  • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 TB canola or olive oil
  • 1/4 chopped peanuts
  • 1 lime halved

Mix cabbage, lettuce, carrots, snow peas, cilantro and scallions in a large bowl.

Brush chicken breasts with oil and season with salt and pepper.  Grill until a meat thermometer registers 140.  Cut lime in half and grill for about 2 minutes.  Let sit for at least 5 minutes (temperature will come up a little more.)  Chop or shred.

Toss lettuce mixture with dressing and top with chicken and chopped peanuts.  Serve with grilled lime.  Delicious!

 

 

Asian Salad with Ginger dressing and leftover Hoisin Pork

The leftover hoisin pork is great on salad.  I’m using the ginger dressing recipe that I got my friend ages ago.  I’ll toss green leaf lettuce with the dressing, add some chopped water chestnuts and lo mein noodles and top with the pork and some hoisin sauce.  (There are even a few peanut noodles left to enjoy on the side.)  Here is the recipe for the ginger dressing:

Ginger dressing

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 TB fresh ginger, minced
  • 3/8 cup olive oil
  • 1/8 cup water
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1/8 cup rice vinegar
  • 1 1/2 TB honey
Shake all ingredients in a jar and use on salad.

Asian Salad with leftover pork

This dinner turned out really well and was a great way to use up the leftover pork.  My husband said “I didn’t think I was going to like it, but this was delicious.”  Dressing is easy and you can throw in anything else you think might be good – I went with what I had in the pantry.

Asian Salad with leftover Hoisin pork

Ginger dressing

  • 1 clove minced garlic
  • 3/8 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1/8 cup water
  • 1 TB fresh ginger, minced
  • 3 TB rice vinegar
  • 1 1/2 TB honey

Combine all ingredients in a jar and shake.

Salad

  • 1 head green leaf lettuce, washed and dried
  • 1 can water chestnuts, rinsed and halved
  • 1 TB wasabi peas
  • 1 handful Chow mein noodles
  • leftover pork with hoisin sauce

Toss lettuce with water chestnuts, wasabi peas and dressing.  Cut pork into small pieces and toss with leftover hoisin sauce.  Put salad mixture on plates and top with Chow mein noodles and pork.

Asian salad with leftover pork and Ginger Dressing

Hope you enjoyed your pasta tonight.  Tomorrow night will be an Asian Salad with leftover Hoisin Pork.  If you didn’t make the pork on Monday and want to join for the salad tomorrow, just make sure you have these ingredients on hand and stop by the store for some grilled chicken from prepared foods to put on top of the salad.

Ingredients for Asian Salad with Ginger Dressing

  • One bag salad greens
  • One small can, water chestnuts
  • Chow Mein noodles
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • Fresh Ginger root (1 TB minced)
  • olive oil (3/8 cup)
  • rice vinegar (1/8 cup)
  • soy sauce (1/4 cup)
  • 1 1/2 TB honey
  • 1/8 cup water

If you want to make the dressing ahead, combine the garlic, ginger, olive oil, vinegar, soy sauce, honey and water in a jar with a lid.  Shake well and refrigerate.  Tomorrow you just need to toss the salad greens with the dressing, add some water chestnuts and chow mein noodles for crunch and top with leftover pork and hoisin sauce or meat of your choice.  A quick and healthy dinner.

If you do stop at the store tomorrow for ingredients, grab tilapia filets (one per person) for Thursday’s fish tacos.  More to come tomorrow night.