How arrogant of me, to call this pork “perfect.” How dare I be so bold? So smug?

Few things in life are actually perfect, it’s true, and in all likelihood, this pork is no more perfect than I am – which is to say, it’s got a ways to go. But it’s darned good. It’s the kind of good that made my kids go rooting in the refrigerator for the leftovers the next day, the kind of good that had hubby J. proclaiming that he’d like me to make this pork, and ONLY this pork, every time I buy pork for dinner for the rest of eternity. (I think he was kidding, but one never knows.) The thing is, it tasted amazing, was perfectly juicy, and it made for a very easy meal that took practically no effort to pull together.

When I made this meal over the weekend, I had a serious time crunch – errands in the morning, followed by getting a little lunch into the whole family while wrapping a gift and then hustling P. to a birthday party for a friend that was almost 45 minutes away, which meant that by the time we got home, it wasn’t very long before I needed to start dinner. Yet even on a crazy day like that, I had no trouble pulling this off. The marinade for the pork and the dressing for the salad are made from the same base, which gets whipped up in a blender to avoid any bothersome chopping or mixing. I took care of that while lunch was warming up, then dumped the results over a pan of pork chops and a bag of cubed eggplant and voila – by the time I got home, party-weary and in need of some serious peace and quiet, there was my lovely marinated dinner, ready to grill.

A quick bit of chopping while the meat and eggplant cooked (with the help of 6-year-old Chef P., naturally), a toss of the salad, and we were ready to eat. In truth, the whole meal would have been improved by summer produce, but I wanted to try this out before the season gets underway so that all of you could have a fantastic recipe ready and waiting when those tomatoes, peppers, eggplant and cucumbers burst forth.

Easy enough for a weeknight, impressive enough for dinner guests, and loaded with good, nutritious produce – it may not be perfect, but it’s definitely a keeper.

Get the recipe: Mediterranean Grilled Pork and Salad