Pork Tenderloin

When I explain to my students why certain dishes work so well, the flavor combination of salty and sweet is one of the examples I use. Pork and apples are an ever-popular salty-sweet treat. In this dish, we use the bacon as the salty counterpoint to the sweet apple compote. The pork tenderloin rubbed with garlic and rosemary adds complexity and delicious flavor. Pork tenderloins are available at most supermarkets and are easy to trim. You can use any tart apples for the compote. --Chef Tom Lelli

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with Granny Smith Apple Compote

Recipe from: Chef Tom Lelli, instructor at Maui Culinary Academy / Maui Culinary Academy’s Taste of Maui Cookbook

Servings: 6
Prep Time: 1.5 hours

PORK TENDERLOIN

  • 1 1/2 pounds pork tenderloins
  • 6 pieces bacon or pancetta, thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 sprig fresh rosemary, chopped
  • salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 6 toothpicks

APPLE COMPOTE

  • 5 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, and cut into large dice
  • 1 cup + 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1/2 vanilla bean, split and scraped
  • 1 dried chipotle or Ancho chili (optional)
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 2 cups water
  • salt to taste

TO MARINATE THE PORK: Trim the silver skin off of the pork tenderloins. (The silver skin is a tough white membrane found on the outside of the tenderloin.) Cut the tenderloins into six equal portions. Lay the tenderloins flat on a cutting board and cut into medallions, small round steaks like filet mignons. Wrap a piece of bacon around the outside of each pork medallion. The bacon should be trimmed so it goes around the pork once, with only a slight overlap. Place a toothpick where the bacon overlaps to hold it in place.

In a small bowl, mix the olive oil, garlic, and rosemary and then rub the mixture onto the medallions. Refrigerate covered for 1 hour.

TO PREPARE THE APPLE COMPOTE: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Place the apple pieces, sugar, cinammon sticks, vanilla skins, butter, water, salt, and optional chili in an ovenproof casserole dish and cover with a lid. Bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes our until the apples are tender, but not to soft. Remove the cinammon stick, chili, and vanilla bean skins. Keep warm.

TO SEAR THE PORK: Preheat an ovenproof saute pan or skillet over medium heat. Season the pork with salt and pepper. Place the canola oil in the pan and add the pork when the oil is hot, being careful not to crowd the pan. Sear the pork until brown, about 3 minutes per side, then turn the portions on their sides so the bacon cooks, too.

You can finish cooking the pork over medium heat or place it in the oven for 10-15 minutes, depending on how well done you like your pork.

TO SERVE: When the pork is finished, remove the toothpicks and serve the pork with the warm apple compote. To round out the presentation, serve with grilled zucchini, asparagus, and carrots.


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