Wednesday, May 21, 2008

summer cooking

Summer is creeping its way toward us, one sixty-five-degree day at a time, and I can hardly wait. Summer means trips to the pool, playing outside all day long, and hanging out with friends we don’t get to see as much during the school year. Of course, it also means Mom has little time to actually get anything done, since we’re all so busy having fun!

One of the ways I like to save time in the summer is in the kitchen. Who feels like cooking when it’s hot? Not me. I have a notebook of summer meals that I pull out, with lots of main dish salads and grilling recipes. You can also find some great recipes on this Summer Food blog.

Here’s one of my favorite grilling recipes and a tip: freeze your meat right in the marinade. That’s right. When I buy meat, I buy a lot of it and freeze it in family-sized portions. I make two or three big batches of our favorite marinades, then I add the marinade to the ziptop bag right with the meat and pop it into the freezer (labeled, of course). The meat will marinate while you thaw it in the refrigerator. It’s simple. It’s easy. And it works for me!

Hoisin-Marinated Pork Chops
Cooking Light

The chops need to marinate for at least 8 hours, so this is a great make-ahead dinner.

1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce
1/4 cup hoisin sauce
1/4 cup honey
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
2 garlic cloves, minced
8 (4-ounce) boneless center-cut loin pork chops (about 3/4 inch thick)
Cooking spray

Combine first 5 ingredients in a large zip-top plastic bag; add pork chops. Seal and marinate in refrigerator 8 hours or overnight.

Prepare grill.

Remove pork from bag; discard marinade. Place pork on grill rack coated with cooking spray; grill 3 minutes on each side or until done.

Note: Store cooked pork in refrigerator for up to 2 days.

Yield: 8 servings (serving size: 1 pork chop)

CALORIES 188(30% from fat); FAT 6.2g (sat 2.1g,mono 2.8g,poly 0.7g); PROTEIN 25.1g; CHOLESTEROL 62mg; CALCIUM 27mg; SODIUM 249mg; FIBER 0.2g; IRON 1mg; CARBOHYDRATE 6.7g

Head over to Rocks in my Dryerfor more great tips!


Kelsey said...

That sounds so good!

April said...

Sounds yummy!

Mom2fur said...

Thanks for the link--I bookmarked it! Your recipe sounds delicious. And I've marinated my meat in the freezer--just makes it so much easier when it's time to cook it (one less step).

FrazzMom said...

Sounds yummy! I picked up the 'marinate in the freezer' trick when I was using Dream Dinners- it's one of their standard techniques...

We were in the 90's last weekend (we're back down to low 80's now) so it's definitely time to break out the summer recipes here!

Daniele said...

sounds delicious! thanks for stopping by my blog, can't remember if I've commented on that before or not. LOL. come by anytime; I'll be back here as well.

Anonymous said...

Hey thanks for the link. Hope you find some great recipes there - I still have more to load!

And although I'm not a pork chop eater, I think I'll try this marinade on something else.

Llama Momma said...

SP -- this is a great marinade for pork tenderloin or chicken too!

Don Mills Diva said...

Sounds really good - pretty low in fat and calories too!

marigold said...

That's a great idea! I usually throw my marinade into my baggie with the frozen hunk of meat and it still thaws with the marinade.