Do you ever think that a specific place, area, or season tastes like something? Hold…let me give you a few examples before you think I’m cray cray. To me, fall tastes like Pumpkin Spice Lattes. The beach tastes like crab dipped in butter sauce. Christmas tastes like hot chocolate. My home in North Carolina tastes like Chicken Pot Pie and Baked Potato Soup. The school where I teach tastes like kale salad (my lunch every day).
Maybe the better way to put it would be, “Do you ever think a specific place, area, or season is associated with certain food or certain flavors?” But my way of saying it is more fun. REJECT BORING THINGS.
Well, this pork tastes like summer. Legggiiiitttttt. Summer. As you take a bite and chew, you are hearing “Summer, summer, summer, summer, summer” in your head. For two reasons:
- The marinade
- The mango salsa
Let’s talk about those two things, shall we? We shall.
The marinade. It is hard to find words to accurately describe the deliciousness of this marinade. It is a blended puree of mango, lime juice, garlic, a little bit of red onion, and a touch of Sriracha. You pour this beautiful mixture over your pork and let it sit together and do its business for as long as your patience will allow you to wait.
(The longer the better, if your nose and taste buds don’t force you to end the party early.)
This marinade adds SO much amazing flavor to the pork. It could be a recipe all on its own, even without the mango salsa. But don’t do that to yourself, because the mango salsa kicks it up like fifty more notches ?. Oh, excuse me. Fifty one more notches. My mistake.
So about that mango salsa. Salsas like this, meaning non traditional salsas (not the tomato based kind that you get in restaurants), are so awesome.
This mango salsa is such a bright and flavor packed topping for this pork. You don’t have to just use it for this recipe, though – keep it in your back pocket for a million different occasions. Served plain with chips, over fish, over chicken – the possibilities are endless. I, however, had trouble not finishing off the entire bowl with a spoon before the pork was ready…so I don’t think I’d have enough left over for these other yummy uses.
What goes into this wonderful, heavenly mango salsa? All of this awesomeness:
- Red onion
- Lime juice
Come on…if that doesn’t sound like the best thing ever, I don’t know what does.
The mango salsa is amazing on its own, the pork is amazing on its own, but when you put the two of them together…oh man. Summaaaaaatime.
It has been HOT AS FIRE here lately, so this pork was especially welcome in our house. When it is sweltering outside, refreshing, bright meals like this taste so much better. I’m convinced that this pork tastes better in June than February. Even if you used the exact same ingredients…convinced.
I would highly recommend grilling this, by the way. For three reasons.
- Grilling is the most boss way to cook anything, and it makes the pork flavorful and juicy.
- Summa = grilling. Hop on that bandwagon.
- You can make your husband do it so you don’t have to stand in a hot kitchen when it’s already a billion degrees outside. If the grill master of the family is the one reading this post, take one for the team, get your butt out there by that hot grill, and MAKE IT HAPPEN.
Several days ago (in this post), I talked about how Seth told me he saw a wolf spider on our porch and how that thought was haunting me due to my extreme and irrational phobia of the eight-legged demons. Well I have an update on this little anecdote…
So this was a few nights ago, and we were sitting on our couch while Boone was by the door, wanting to go outside. It was my turn to take him, but I was freaked out because of Seth’s wolf spider revelation. Did I mention it was night time? Aka spider frenzy time. So then he was like, “Well, I actually lied about the spider. I didn’t just see him on the porch, and he’s dead now.” Say whaaaaaaattttttt….what’s happening.
He proceeded to tell me that he did see the spider on the porch and kicked it into the grass, as previously mentioned, but he left out the small detail that he saw it a few days later IN OUR KITCHEN. It was dead under our kitchen table – our cat probably killed it (she just went up an infinite amount of points in my book). IN. our. HOUSE. A wolf spider. And Seth thought this would make me feel better because “The spider is dead.”
First of all…it probs wasn’t even the same spider. Unless this particular spider had a personal mission of breaking into our house and hung around for a few days. Second of all…there was a wolf spider inside our house. Goodbye sleep FOREVER.
If I saw a wolf spider in my house when I was alone, I legit do. not. know. what I would do. I wouldn’t be able to kill it – they are too big and nasty. Not to mention they are actually slightly hard to kill because they are so big. A shoe throw from across the room (my usual tactic) would not work in this situation.
So basically now I’m scared all the time, and I’m always watching my feet. Are any of you readers out there bug sprayers? Want to come over to my house and spray every inch of it with bug repellent? That would be great, THANKS.
Gross. The spider, not the pork. The pork is delicious ???.
- 3 boneless pork loin chops
- For the marinade:
- 1 mango, peeled and diced*
- 1 lime, juiced
- 1 clove of garlic
- 1 teaspoon diced red onion
- A small drop of Sriracha (omit if you don't like spice, add extra if you love spice)
- ½ cup of water
- A little salt and pepper
- For the mango salsa:
- 2 mangos, peeled and diced into small cubes* (1 cup)
- ½ hot house cucumber, peeled, seeded, and diced into small cubes (1/2 cup)
- 1 jalapeno, seeds and ribs removed, finely minced
- 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
- 2 tablespoons finely minced red onion
- 1 medium avocado, diced into small cubes
- 1 lime, juiced
- Salt and pepper to taste
- In a blender, combine all ingredients for the marinade (mango, lime, garlic, red onion, Sriracha, water, and salt/pepper). Blend until smooth
- Place your pork chops into a baking dish or ziplock bag
- Pour marinade over top, and turn the pork chops over and over until they are all evenly coated
- Marinate for AT LEAST one hour - preferably several hours
- When your pork is done marinating, make your salsa before grilling it
- To make your salsa, add all ingredients (mango, cucumber, jalapeño, cilantro, red onion, avocado, lime juice, and salt/pepper to taste) to a medium bowl and stir to combine
- Let this sit in the fridge until your pork is done
- When your pork is ready to cook, remove from the marinade and season both sides with salt and pepper
- Cook your pork (grill is recommended). Pork isn't like chicken - it doesn't have to be totally cooked through. It can still be pink in the middle. But cook it to your preference
- Remove from the grill, let rest, top with mango salsa, and serve
- *Note about mangos - you have to chop them in a certain way because they have a long, flat seed that runs through the middle, from top to bottom. Their skin is also too thick to peel using a peeler (like you would for a carrot or apple). So, here's how I do it: Slice around the seed with your knife, leaving you with four sections. Hold each section in your hand, and scoop the meat out with a spoon, exactly like you would do with an avocado. Dice it up from there!*
*Prep time does not include time for marinating, since that will vary so much based on how long you choose to wait.*
Nutrition info is for one pork chop and 1/3 of the salsa – which leaves you plenty of room to heap that deliciousness onto your pork!
If you make this or any of my other recipes, be sure to Instagram it and hashtag #thegarlicdiaries!
In the mood for more yummy pork recipes? Check these out: