I had 5 ingredients that I needed to work with for dinner and my head hurt just trying to figure out what to do with them all. I had on-the-bone pork chops, long beans, mushrooms, quail eggs and sweet potatoes. At first, I wanted to bake the chops with the sweet potatoes but I realized that by doing that, the flavors would be really bold and potatoes and pork would make a meal leaving me with 3 remaining ingredients that were very light in flavor. So instead, inspired by Vietnamese-styled grilled chops with Asian 5-Spice, I marinated the chops in the special spice mix, along with some soy sauce, black pepper, sesame oil and sugar and grilled those babies up.
To serve along side the pork chops, I sauteed the long beans and mushrooms with some seasonings and reserved a few stalks to form "nests" for my soft-boiled quail eggs. I also whipped up some sweet potato mash, making sure to keep it sweet and creamy to counter against the bold and tangy balsamic-soy reduction that I made to bond everything together.
The concept of my dish presentation is to have the "nest" and egg on a cliff, whereas the pork chop served as the cliff levered by the mash and stir-fry. The concept serves as a memorial to a Blue Jay that we found, dead, in our back yard.