We had lots to celebrate yesterday! Not only was it Cinco de Mayo, which was obviously enough of a reason to throw a happy hour, it also happened to be Nick’s birthday (for his sake I won’t list how old) & Charlotte’s 6 month birthday. On top of that, we got the green light from the doctor to start solids this week. She has already had oatmeal and yams (separately) in the past few days. I posted a video below so you could see how the first few times went (my apologies my video taking skills are poor). I’d say the oatmeal was a breeze, and the yams definitely threw her for a loop at first, but now she’s full throttle into them! I heard yams are a good starting vegetable, so hopefully we don’t have an epic fail with the next vegetable we introduce. PS After her weight in at the doctor’s, I can’t say I was surprised by her hungry appetite, coming in at 19lbs strong (no wonder my back is KILLING me).
In true celebration form, here is one of our favorite go to meals, which has never let us down. This Balsamic pork rub is SO SO easy and you can prep it ahead of time, with ingredients guaranteed to be already sitting in your spice cabinet. We usually don’t have leftovers when we cook this roast, which is quite scary, because it’s only the two of us eating over 1 lb of meat. However, I’d like to consider it lean, so it’s OK in my book! We top of the dish with simple asparagus that is baked in a balsamic glaze and a simple couscous.
Balsamic Glazed Pork and Asparagus: serves 2-3
For the pork:
- 1 lb of pork tenderloin
- 1 table spoon each of salt & pepper
- 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 1/4 cup of balsamic vinegar
- 1/4 virgin olive oil
- 1/2 packet of Italian spice salad dressing mix (I use the Italian good seasons packet found in the salad dressing aisle-see link below)
- It’s not not necessary, but I do add these spices to the mix as well, to give it a little more kick: about 1 table spoon each
- garlic powder
- chili flakes
For the asparagus:
- 1 bunch of asparagus
- 1/4 cup of olive oil
- 4 table spoons of balsamic vinegar
- 3 table spoons of honey
- salt & pepper
*It works best if you marinate the pork ahead of time, giving it a few hours to soak in. You can also cook the asparagus the same time as the pork, maybe pulling it out 5 minutes before (depending on the heat of your oven)
For the Pork:
- In a bowl mix together 1/4 cup of balsamic vinegar, Italian spice packet, and additional spices. Stir vigorously.
- Add in 2 table spoons of red wine vinegar and 1 table spoon of water to the mix.
- Add 1/4 cup of olive oil to the mix. Stir vigorously again.
- Pour marinade into a large zip lock bag and place pork tenderloin inside. *I prefer to salt and pepper the pork generously before throwing it in the bag. Toss the bag around a little to get the mix to adsorb into the meat, then store in the refrigerator until ready to cook.
- Preheat over 425F
- Take pork out of the bag and place on a baking tray. You can pour the remaining marinade onto the roast.
- Bake in oven for 35 minutes, or until the temperature reaches 150F. Let pork rest for 5-10 minutes before slicing. We usually cook the couscous while we wait to slice, since that is a quick 5 minute thing to do.
For the Asparagus:
- Wash and cut ends off of asparagus, and spread evenly onto a baking tray.
- In a mixing bowl mix together 4 table spoons of balsamic vinegar and 3 table spoons of honey. Drizzle generously all over tray. Follow with a generous amount of salt and pepper. Lastly, I drizzle a good amount of olive oil (about 1/4 cup) all over as well.
- Bake asparagus in oven at 425F for 30 minutes, or until tender. If desired, you can re sprinkle some of the balsamic honey mix when there is about 5 minutes left in the oven, to give it a nice glaze.
Click below for Char’s first yams: