Hello everyone. After a short break, I'm back! These last few weeks have been so busy! Let me fill you in briefly: my spring semester finally ended and had a celebratory night out with 15 other classmates, I saw my cousin who is in the Air Force and was in town from Germany, I took my TEAS test (nursing entrance exam), waited
Since I'm finally back to blogging, I might as well fill you in on my grandma's 90th birthday luncheon that occurred during my visit back home. We held it at a local Chinese food restaurant that my family has been going to for years, Hong Kong Chinese Restaurant. I used to go to this restaurant all the time growing up, and over the years, my family has grown to love not only the food, but the quality service received from Elaine. Elaine and her husband are the owners of the restaurant and always go out of their way to make customers feel welcome. Whenever my mom orders Chinese food from Hong Kong, Elaine always remembers to ask about "Grandma," and genuinely cares about the family's health and well-being. For this reason, Hong Kong Chinese Restaurant was the perfect place to hold my Grandma's birthday luncheon.
|Clockwise, starting from bottom: Grandma, my Uncle Larry, Mom. myself, and my sister, Sumiko.|
It was so nice to see the family gathered for this special occasion. With many of us grown now and pursuing our own careers, it's very rare for us to have these opportunities to see each other. My grandma was very happy to see so many family members who made the journey to celebrate her special day, and I was equally pleased to spend the time with her. I hope it won't be long before I can visit my family and see my grandma again.
|An old photo of my grandma, when she was around my age!|
I also attended a friend's wedding during my visit back home! Weddings are always a lot of fun, and now that I have my own wedding plans underway, it was a whole new experience! I was definitely making some mental notes for my own.
|Tony and I, posing for a photo during the wedding reception|
Now, I have quite a few recipes in my queue to share with you, but for today I'll leave you with this: Almond Crusted Pork Tenderloin. This pork tenderloin recipe really impressed me, not only with its flavor but with its beautiful, colorful presentation. The homemade pico de gallo topping really brightens the dish and gives it a fresh look and taste. Plus, the pork is encrusted with almonds, so it was a no-brainer for me. I LOVE almonds, and this almond coating gave the pork a nice, crunchy outer crust.
Since it's just Tony and I in our home, we were able to enjoy the leftovers for a second night, and it tasted just as good as the first. However, if you do have a larger family or are planning on having guests over for dinner, I highly recommend this dish. It will really impress the guests and is great to share with good company. It's the perfect weekend dinner.
Almond Crusted Pork Tenderloin
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Yield: 4 servings
Recipe originally from Taste of Home magazine, Dec/Jan 2010 issue
Vegetable oil spray
6 ounces slivered almonds (1 1/4 cups chopped)
2 medium garlic cloves, crushed
Salt and pepper
2 egg whites
1 1/2 pounds boneless pork loin
Pico de gallo:
2 medium tomatoes, diced (about 2 cups)
1/2 cup diced red onion
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and chopped
1 tsp ground cumin
2 Tbsp lime juice
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
Salt and pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 375°F. Line a roasting pan with foil and place a meat rack on the foil. Spray with vegetable oil spray. Coarsely grind almonds in a food processor. Mix almonds, garlic and salt and pepper to taste in a bowl. Set aside.
Whip egg whites to form soft peaks. Remove visible fat from the pork. Roll the pork in the egg whites and then in the almond mixture. Roll once more in the egg whites and in the almond mixture again. Place pork on the rack and press any remaining almonds onto the pork.
Roast 1 hour, or until a meat thermometer reads 160°F. Remove from oven and let rest for 15 minutes.
Mix the pico de gallo ingredients together. Taste for seasoning. Add salt and pepper if needed. Serve with pork.