everyday food made simple

Do you like peanuts? Do you like limes? Do you like Thai peanut sauce?

If you answered “yes” to all of the above, well, you’re in luck. Tonight’s marinade is inspired by the peanut sauce that often accompanies a lot of Thai food. It’s almost similar to the peanut sauce I used in my pad thai.

Actually, now that I think about it, about 80% of the ingredients found in this recipe can also be found in that peanut sauce as well….

So, if you’re a fan of shrimp pad thai, think of this is a dish as a “skinny” version of it since you’ll be saving yourself a lot of carbs but I promise you what this recipe lacks in carbs, it sure makes it up in flavor!

Another plus to this dish is that since your food processor is going to do all the hard labor for you, there’s really not a whole lot of work that goes into this either.

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Throw ingredients into food processor. Pulse. Marinate shrimp. Throw on grill. Enjoy.

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It’s as easy as “1, 2, 3!”

And if you’re making this as an appetizer for a party, your hungry guests wouldn’t have to wait long either since it only takes 4-5 minutes on the grill, and BAM! These bad boys are done and ready to be served.

peanut-lime marinated shrimp
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For the marinade
  1. 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  2. 1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce
  3. 3 tablespoons unsalted peanuts
  4. 1/2 teaspoon lime zest
  5. 2 tablespoons lime juice
  6. 2 tablespoons sesame oil
  7. 1/3 cup fresh basil, roughly chopped
  8. 2.5 tablespoons ginger, roughly chopped
  9. 1 large clove of garlic
  10. 1 teaspoon hot chili sauce
  11. 12-15 jumbo grilling shrimp
Instructions
  1. In the food processor, combine all the marinade ingredients and pulse until smooth and there aren't any big chunks of ingredients visible. Combine shrimp and marinade in a medium-sized bowl, toss to evenly coat the shrimp, cover and set aside at room temperature for 20-30 minutes.
  2. Using a charcoal grill, place shrimp over direct high heat. Cover and grill until shrimp are firm to the touch, lightly charred, and slightly opaque in the center, turning once (about 2-3 minutes per side).
  3. Remove from grill and serve with a fresh squeeze of lime juice, if desired.
Adapted from Weber Grills
Adapted from Weber Grills
Simple Everyday Food http://www.simpleeverydayfood.com/
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Enjoy!

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As I promised, here’s the second recipe of last night’s dishes – a very simply seasoned tenderloin with a garlicky sauce.

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I partially wanted to make something that involved garlic because I found this cute little thing at the store yesterday! It’s a way better (and more eye appealing) than our old “Philadelphia cream cheese garlic storage container“! And we can actually proudly display it on our counter now!

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Although this tenderloin is juicy and tender by itself, the sauce kicks the whole dish up a few notches. Green sauces, unlike other colored sauces, are usually associated with words like “fresh” and “healthy“. And why wouldn’t they? They’re usually made with some sort of an herb, garlic, light seasoning (salt and pepper), with little sugar and other processed condiments.

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pork tenderloin with garlic herb sauce
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Ingredients
  1. 1 cup packed flat leaf parsley
  2. 2 cloves garlic
  3. 1/2 cups EVOO, plus more for brushing
  4. 3 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  5. 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  6. A dash of crushed red pepper (omit if you're not a fan of spiciness)
  7. 1 1.5-pound pork tenderloin
  8. 1/2 teaspoons garlic powder
  9. Salt and pepper
Instructions
  1. Using a food processor, pulse the parsley and garlic. Then add in the EVOO, 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano, vinegar, red pepper, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and a pinch of black pepper. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.
  2. Prepare a charcoal grill so it's nice and hot.
  3. Brush the pork with some EVOO and rub with 1 teaspoon salt, 3 teaspoons dried oregano, and the garlic powder.
  4. Place tenderloin on the grill, turning often, and cook until the meat thermometer registers 145 degrees, about 25-30 minutes.
  5. Remove from grill and let rest for 20 minutes. Thinly slice and drizzle with the herb sauce.
Adapted from Rachel Ray Magazine
Adapted from Rachel Ray Magazine
Simple Everyday Food http://www.simpleeverydayfood.com/
Not only does this green garlic sauce taste good, it also makes the whole dish look like something you can order at a restaurant.

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After we both had our share last night, there were a few pieces left, and I wasted no time on calling dibs on them for lunch today!

And yes, I’m still working on that gigantic bowl of potato salad… I had to try my hardest to pull myself away from that bowl so I can have some room for coffee later.

….”just one more bite!

[five bites later….]

“Okay, just one last bite! This is going to be my last bite!”

Enjoy!

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When you find a good recipe, it never hurts to make it again… right?

Our dry-rubbed ribeye steaks from a few months back was such a success that we decided to make it again tonight to kick-start the weekend. Except this time we decided to be fancy and make some grilled shrimp to make a surf-and-turf instead.

Wooo… fancy, eh?

We’ve never made shrimp on the grill before, so it was a first for us.

We decided on some spicy Cajun rubbed shrimp with a spicy chipotle mayonnaise dipping sauce.

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It sounds fancy, but it’s actually quite simple to make. If you like shrimp and you like spicy dipping sauces, there’s no excuse why you shouldn’t try this out this summer!

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cajun shrimp with spicy chipotle mayonnaise
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For the shrimp
  1. 1 lb medium shrimp, peeled and deveined with tail on
  2. 2 tablespoons olive oil
  3. 1 tablespoon Cajun seasoning
  4. 1/2 tablespoon chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, finely chopped
  5. 1/2 teaspoon brown sugar
For the mayonnaise
  1. 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  2. 2 canned chipotles in adobo sauce
  3. 1 teaspoon adobo sauce
  4. Juice of 1/4 lime
For the shrimp
  1. Soak bamboo skewers in water. In the meantime, get your charcoal grill ready so it's nice and hot.
  2. In a large bowl, toss shrimp with olive oil, brown sugar, Cajun seasoning, and chopped chipotle peppers so all the shrimp are evenly coated with seasoning.
  3. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  4. With 3-4 shrimp per skewer, cook on grill over direct heat, about 1-2 minutes per side, or until they turn pink, turning once or twice (we cooked ours for 1.5 minutes per side and they were perfectly done).
For mayonnaise sauce
  1. Combine all ingredients in a food processor and blend. Transfer to a small bowl and chill in refrigerator until ready to serve.
Notes
  1. Depending on taste, you can add more or less chipotle peppers to your seasoning & mayonnaise sauce. Our mayo turned out to be a little spicier than what I thought, but it was still quite delicious.
Adapted from Scrumpdillyicious
Adapted from Scrumpdillyicious
Simple Everyday Food http://www.simpleeverydayfood.com/
Even though my steak tasted amazing, the star on my plate was definitely the shrimp. They were succulent, juicy, flavorful, spicy all at the same time.

We threw some russet potatoes in the oven for a quick side of (unhealthy) carbs.

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The chilled mayo dipping sauce can play tricks on your palate though – just when you think the chilled mayo was going to balance out the hot spiciness of the shrimp, you taste the kick of the chipotle peppers in the sauce. Although spicy, they were super addicting. These would be great for either a side dish (like we did), or as an appetizer if you have a group of people over for a cookout this summer.

Enjoy!

Recipe adapted from Scrumpdillyicious

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Since last time I tried a dry rub recipe on some ribeyes and they turned out to be super amazing, I figured I’d try a different dry rub recipe for pork tenderloins today.

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Despite the fact that it rained all day here in the Twin Cities, it was almost as if Mother Nature knew we had plans to grill out tonight and gave us some nice (but chilly) weather in the end :)

Thank goodness the skies cleared up – if it would’ve kept on raining, we would’ve had to quickly find a Plan B for dinner. And being the strong Type A person that I am, a last-minute Plan B would not bode well with me (especially when I’ve already gotten everything ready to go). Type A people like to make plans, and stick to their plans. They don’t do well when plans do not go as planned…. in the end, everything ended up going as planned, so I I’m a happy camper.

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grilled pork tenderloin
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Ingredients
  1. Pork tenderloin, about 1.5 pounds
  2. 2 teaspoons EVOO
  3. 1 tablespoon paprika
  4. 2 teaspoons salt
  5. 1/2 teaspoons black pepper
  6. 1 teaspoon brown sugar
  7. 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  8. 1 teaspoon mustard powder
  9. 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  10. 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
Instructions
  1. In a small bowl, combine the paprika, salt, pepper, brown sugar, ground cumin, mustard powder, garlic powder, and onion powder.
  2. Rub the EVOO over the pork tenderloin, then generously coat with the spice rub. Wrap the pork tenderloin in plastic wrap and place in the fridge for 3-6 hours.
  3. Remove the pork from the fridge about 30 minutes before grilling.
  4. Using a charcoal grill, set it up so the coals are nice and hot.
  5. Place the pork over direct heat. Cook for about 20-30 minutes (depending on the size of the pork), turning once halfway, or until a thermometer inserted into the thickest part registers 140-145 degrees.
  6. Transfer to cutting board and let rest for 15 minutes.
  7. Slice the pork and serve.
Adapted from Food Network Magazine
Adapted from Food Network Magazine
Simple Everyday Food http://www.simpleeverydayfood.com/
Anyway… what’s not to like about pork tenderloin? These babies were so juicy, tender, and full of flavor. The dry rub gave it a crusty crust on the outside, and the charcoals gave it a nice smoky flavor on the inside. Along with the corn on the cob and cheesy bread to go along with it, who says you can’t have restaurant-quality meals at home?!

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Yep, it was good – definitely a repeat for whenever summer decides to show up in Minnesota. I’m glad we decided to buy two tenderloins, so now we’ve got plenty of yummy meals for the next few days. Next time, I’m going to be sitting on the patio soaking up some sun with some lemonade while the hubs makes me dinner :)

Enjoy!

Recipe adapted from Food Network Magazine

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Just when I thought spring was right around the corner, I checked the forecast for the next 5 days and saw this:

forecast

Ugh. I need to move. I guess today would be the last day to get to use the grill for the next few days (they’re calling for rain for the entire weekend as well). Good thing we planned ahead and decided to throw some chops on the grill for a quick dinner. Yay for planning ahead!

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I have a few rub recipes I’ve been itching to try all winter, waiting for some nice sunny days to grill out. Since I didn’t get to enjoy the nice warm weather we had this past weekend, today seemed to be the perfect day to try a new recipe out, and I sure didn’t have to ask the hubs twice if he wanted to fire up the grill….

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Disregard the teriyaki marinated chicken that’s on the other side of the grill the hubs was making for his work lunches….

Ever since the hubs found out that sometimes trying new things really isn’t that bad (see my post about how he bravely tried my roasted red pepper & pesto penne and liked it), I’m hoping that this summer we’ll be “diversifying” his palate and trying things he’s never even wanted to try before. Since the pesto was a success, I figured we can try a rub that contained similar ingredients to it…

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grilled pork chops with basil garlic rub
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Ingredients
  1. 2 thin bone-in pork chops, about 1/2" thick
  2. 2 garlic cloves, peeled
  3. 1 cup fresh basil leaves
  4. 2 tablespoons EVOO
  5. Juice of one lemon
  6. 1 teaspoon salt
  7. 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
Instructions
  1. Using a charcoal grill, set the grill up so the coals are nice and hot.
  2. Meanwhile, with the food processor running, drop the garlic cloves through the feeding tube and mince. Stop and add the basil leaves, pulse on high until thoroughly chopped.
  3. Add the EVOO, lemon juice, salt, and pepper. Pulse until everything is mixed well and it turns into a thin, wet rub.
  4. Generously spread basil mixture on both sides of the pork chops. Let sit for 15-30 minutes.
  5. Place chops on grill over direct heat, cook for about 6-8 minutes, turning once halfway through, or until internal temperature reaches 145 degrees.
  6. Remove pork chops from grill and let rest for 3-5 minutes.
Notes
  1. Cooking times may vary based on how hot your coals are and the thickness of your pork chops. If you're unsure if they're done, it's always best to use a meat thermometer.
Simple Everyday Food http://www.simpleeverydayfood.com/
Since we made regular plain whole wheat couscous this time, the juices from the chops gave our otherwise boring couscous a really good flavor. The hubs thought the rub was so good that he said, “I think I like basil!”

It’s almost just as rewarding as hearing your picky 5-year-old say they think your food is amazing. :)

Enjoy!

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