Last Sunday was one of those hot, humid, sticky days in St. Louis, where the last thing I wanted to do is stand over a hot stove. I thought a hearty ‘warm’ dinner salad would be the perfect solution, plus I had a taste for a spicy cold noodles with fresh greens and garlicky-ginger pork tenderloin. The pork only took a few minutes under the broiler to cook so the kitchen was nice and cool when we sat down for dinner. The only heat was from the fiery jalapeno and the red pepper flakes!
2 lbs. pork tenderloin, cut into 1/2 inch slices
1 package rice noodles
1 package fresh baby spinach, washed
1 red onion, thinly sliced
1 cup carrots, julienned
1 cup radishes, thinly sliced
1 jalapeno, seeded and thinly sliced
1/2 cup cilantro leaves
1/2 cup water
4 tablespoons olive oil
4 tablespoons, fresh garlic, minced
4 tablespoons fresh ginger, minced
4 tablespoons fish sauce
4 tablespoons soy sauce
4 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon crushed red pepper flakes
Freshly ground black pepper
Juice of 2 limes
1) Mix half of the lime juice, 2 tablespoons of the olive oil, fish sauce, soy sauce, garlic, ginger and sugar in a large bowl.
2) Add the pork to the bowl and toss it with the marinade until coated. Cover the bowl and place it in the refrigerator, allowing the meat to marinate for a minimum of 30 minutes. (Two hours is ideal).
3) Cook the rice noodles according to package directions, rinse under cold water, drain and set aside.
4) Pre-heat your oven to broil.
5) Combine the water, the remaining olive oil, sugar, lime juice, fish sauce, soy sauce, garlic, ginger, and the jalapeno, crushed red pepper and black pepper in another large bowl and stir until the sugar has dissolved. Add the noodles, cilantro, onion, radishes, spinach, and carrots to the bowl and toss until the dressing is thoroughly incorporated.
6) Transfer the pork to a foil-lined baking sheet and season it with the salt and black pepper.
7) Place the baking sheet in the oven and broil the pork until browned, about 3-5 minutes. Turn the pork over and broil another 3-5 minute until browned.
8) To serve, distribute the noodle and salad mixture onto plates and top with the a few slices of the pork. Garnish each plate with the chopped peanuts.