I'm in a mood lately, and I'm sure I'm not the only one, where I want to cook inside as little as possible. I also want my food to feel light and fresh, and I want to try and enjoy the bounty of the season as best as possible, whether that be from my own little garden or some farmers market fare. Oh, and I don't want to spend a ton of money. Who's with me? This dinner hits a lot of these marks. In fact, here in Michigan I could find most of these ingredients at the farmers market, including spice rubs and honey! Since the carrots need to cook in a pan, I opted to grill the tenderloin inside as well, but if you are less lazy than I am, cook the pork on an outdoor grill by all means! As for the salad, yes, it's simple, but you don't need a ton of ingredients to pack the perfect flavor punch. Blue cheese and honey!? Yes, ma'am!
This week's meal is admittedly a departure for my weekly "What's for Dinner?" series. Recently, I was shopping at the Asian market to pick up some seaweed-sesame sprinkle that I like to put on rice and I was reminded of all the great ingredients they offer there. Sometimes I get so programmed in my ways of every-day-grocery-store shopping that it's exciting to be inspired by something different. When I saw the sashimi tuna for sale I was reminded of the restaurant I worked at during culinary school and how we would coat tuna in sesame seeds and then sear it ever-so quickly, adding great textural contrast to the delicate fish. I decided that while sashimi-grade tuna might not be in every weeknight meal budget, it's always nice to keep dinner exciting, and every now and then that means something other than chicken, or salmon! Right? Right. And what tuna lacks in affordability, it makes up for in fantastically fast cooking, so this complete meal can be ready in 20 minutes. Yum!
This week's meal was inspired directly from a busy, hunger-satisfying weeknight meal I whipped up for myself a few months ago. As it was, I had all of these ingredients on hand at that moment and was so hungry I knew I needed something good, fast. Well, when magic like this happens, how can I NOT share it with all of you who undoubtedly are facing the same scenarios every week, right? Even if you don't happen to have every ingredient on hand, familiar staples plus a stop at the store for a few fresh ingredients make this meal quick and easy.
I have to admit, I often feel jealous of my clients. As I cook deliciously fresh meals for them each week, I can't help but wish I cooked as well for myself as I do for them. What can I say? I try a lot harder for my clients than I do for myself! After a full day of cooking for someone else, it's hard to have the energy to come home and do it again, [especially the dishes]. But recently I figured out a compromise. The healthy, supper-size salad. I like to leave a hearty, meal-worthy salad in my clients' fridges every so often. Not a side salad, but a salad that packs loads of protein, fiber and overall nutrients that it makes a meal all in itself. I realized this is the exact meal I can prepare for myself, too. The trick is in the no cooking. Chopping, yes. A few dishes, of course...but no cooking. And, my two favorite things about any meal - 1. It's easy to prep a big batch to enjoy throughout the week, and 2. the ingredients are super flexible - see my prep notes for suggestions. One last thing - with the weather getting warmer, don't you just feel like eating healthier and fresher? That's why I call this the "Rainbow" salad, because the more varied the veggies you choose, the more beautiful it is to eat. And who doesn't get happy when they see a rainbow!?!
Hi! I'm Emily, and this is the official blog of Guest Chef, my personal chef and catering business serving Metro Detroit. As much as I love to cook for people, I also love inspiring others to cook great food for themselves and their friends and family. Which is why I share recipes, tips and inspiration here. Follow along and let's cook something great together!