Wednesday, October 1, 2008

The other white (and really quite tasty) meat

We had friends over to dinner Saturday and made roasted pork tenderloin with apple cider jus. I found the recipe on a terrific food blog I’ve been reading, Je Mange la Ville. We loved it and even the two toddlers gobbled it up.
I haven’t had much luck with pork in the past — always a little dry and chewy — but this came out absolutely perfect; no knife needed, super juicy. Most of the credit goes to my new meat thermometer (Component Design DTTC-S) and current favorite kitchen gadget. Since the thermometer probe goes in the oven and connects to a console/base on the outside, you never have to open the door to check on anything. There’s even an alarm to tell you when your meat has reached the correct temperature. My mom has owned one for awhile, but until now, I didn’t realize quite how superior it was to my lame “traditional” thermometer. It rules.

We served the pork with fresh green beans and caramelized red onion mashed potatoes. A really great dinner for a fall get-together with lots of laughter, good friends and good wine.

Side note: The jus is a nice balance of sweet and savory. It’s supposed to be thin and we all liked it that way, but I threw a little Wondra Flour into the leftover sauce to make more of a gravy on day two (follow the Kettle Gravy directions on the side of the Wondra canister and use one cup of the leftover jus as the broth). I made about one and a half the recipe for the sauce so we would have extra. It was really good in its thickened-form, too, served over brown rice.

Roasted pork tenderloin with apple cider jus
Serves six hungry adults and two voracious toddlers
4 cups apple cider
2 cup low-salt chicken broth
1 large white onion, chopped
12 whole allspice
3 large rosemary sprigs (two for the sauce (whole), one for the pork (minced))
4 cinnamon sticks
4 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
2 bay leaves
2 tbsp unsalted butter
2 one-pound pork tenderloins, well trimmed
Olive oil
4 cloves garlic, minced
salt & pepper

Mix first eight ingredients in medium saucepan. Boil until mixture is reduced to 3 cups, about 45 minutes. Strain, pressing on solids to extract liquid. Discard solids. Return liquid to saucepan and boil until reduced to 1 1/2 cups, about 15 minutes. Whisk in the butter and season with salt and pepper, if needed.

Meanwhile, preheat oven to 375 degrees. Slather pork with olive oil, salt and pepper generously and coat with the minced garlic and rosemary.

Brown on all sides on high in a oven-proof pan. Finish roasting in the preheated oven, 20-22 minutes or until the pork reaches 145 degrees.

Cover with foil and let rest for five to 10 minutes. Pour any pork drippings from the rested meat into the cider sauce.

Slice and serve with the jus drizzled over the top.

Caramelized red onion mashed potatoes
Serves six
12 medium-sized Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and quartered
One red onion, finely diced
3/4 cup low fat milk
8 oz. light cream cheese
6 Tbsp. butter
1 Tbsp. garlic powder
Salt and pepper to taste

Melt 2 tablespoons butter in heavy medium skillet over medium heat. Add onions and cook until tender and deep golden-brown, stirring often, about 20 minutes. Transfer onions to small bowl. Add milk to skillet — burner should be turned off.

Meanwhile, place quartered potatoes in large saucepan. Add enough cold water to pan to cover potatoes by 1 1/2 inches. Bring to boil, reduce heat to medium, and simmer until potatoes are tender, about 15 to 20 minutes. Drain. Return potatoes to pan and stir over medium heat until dry, about 1 minute. Add remaining 4 tablespoons butter. Bring milk in skillet to simmer, scraping up any browned bits. Add hot milk and cream cheese to potatoes. Mash potatoes. Stir in caramelized onions, garlic powder, salt and pepper to taste.


jenny said...

That sounds amazing! We've been making pork tenderloin a lot lately- you should check on the pork with gorgonzola sauce on The sauce is sooo good!

Emily said...

I love anything that's sweet and savory. Sounds delicious - can't wait to try it!

Missy said...

No photo of mashed potatoes? The sides never get enough credit. :-)