So I've just about finished packing (I just need to weigh my suitcases to make sure they're not over 50 lb), the menu plan is basically done, and I'm about to head out for a trip to the gym before my flight leaves at 3:30. Yes I am flying from Boston to New York. Yes I am lazy. BUT I used my frequent flyer miles to buy the tickets. And that 30 minute flight as opposed to the six hour bus ride is worth every penny. Trust me - you don't know pain until you've spent 10+ hours on a bus on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving sitting next to a smelly lady who's taking up more than her fair share of the seat.
Part of me wonders why I didn't just spare myself the annoyance of traveling and stay here for spring break, but I know that my parents are very happy that I will be home and, honestly, I probably would have been bored here. I will probably be bored there, what with everyone working/going to school but at least I'll have the dog (my baby) and a car. I'm definitely looking forward to the chance to cook some time-consuming food that I would never have the patience to take on in the dorm kitchen. I will also be doing some serious running. My roommate and I booked our cruise tickets last night for the end of May (we are going to the Bahamas) and since the date doesn't interfere with Boston's Run To Remember half marathon, I have decided to sign up for that since I will not be guaranteed a spot in the NYC half marathon. I will probably register for both, since they are three months apart, and in the worst case scenario I will get to run one half marathon before the year is up. This, however, means I will have to start some serious training. I am already a fair part of the way there, as most training schedules never make you run more than 10 miles in preparation for the 13.
The best part about the whole going home process, however, is going to be explaining to my family why I have to take pictures of all of their food before they can eat it. That is going to go over well.
As for these dishes that I am posting about, I knew that I wanted to make something quick and easy before I left that would use up some of the stuff in in my fridge (namely the sun-dried tomatoes I had left over from last week). So, lo and behold, I pulled out my new and beautiful copy of Bon Appetit's Fast Easy Fresh, closed my eyes and opened up to a random page. This random page was in the pork section of the book. Deciding that this was a definite case of divine intervention, I perused the pork recipes finally settling on the pork medallions with chili-maple sauce. I figured I was also channeling some of Kevin from Closet Cooking's current obsession with maple syrup :P. Now for the hard part - the sun-dried tomatoes. I looked through some of my bookmarked recipes and found this combination of quinoa, corn, and sun-dried tomatoes on Lisa's Kitchen (a great vegetarian food blog). Since I always make it a point to have quinoa on hand (it is one of my favorite whole grains and if you haven't yet, you should definitely try it) I decided to go with it. Both dishes were spicy yet satisfying with lots of fresh flavors. The Bon Appetit one was especially good. I think I am going to make it my goal to try to cook a recipe from there every week (i.e. cook through the book...VERY slowly).
Pork Medallions with Chili-Maple Sauce
Serves 2, adapted from Bon Appetit's Fast Easy Fresh
3/4 lb pork tenderloin
1/2 tsp chinese five-spice powder
1 tbsp olive oil
1/2 cup chicken broth
1 1/2 tbsp maple syrup
1 tbsp chili garlic sauce
1. Cut tenderloin into 6 slices. Season with salt, pepper, and five-spice powder.
2. Heat oil and cook the pork 3 min/side. Remove from pan. In the same pan, add the broth, maple syrup, and chili-garlic sauce. Boil until reduced to 1/4 cup. Pour over pork.
Quinoa with Sun-Dried Tomatoes and Corn
Serves 2, adapted from Lisa's Kitchen
3/4 cup quinoa
1 cup sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
2 cups chicken broth
1 tbsp olive oil
1 clove garlic
1 jalapeno pepper
1/2 cup frozen corn
1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp coriander
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
salt and pepper
1. Heat oil and cook onion and garlic for a few minutes, until softened. Add sun-dried tomatoes and jalapeno. Cook about 3 minutes.
2. Add quinoa, spices, and broth. Bring to a boil and then simmer for 20-30 minutes or until broth has evaporated. Fluff with a fork before serving.
I am submitting this to Weekend Herb Blogging, which is being hosted this week by Yasmeen of Healthnut.