Are you getting ready for a busy weekend? Quite thankfully, I’m not! I can’t remember the last time we had a weekend with absolutely NOTHING going on. I’m going to savor it, every little second. (In other words, don’t call my house tomorrow in the early morning hours because I hope to be sleeping.)
Since my weekend is wide open, but the upcoming week is not, I want to make sure that we are all able to enjoy a nice family dinner on Sunday. Sunday dinners are a thing of legend…in my head, at least. I remember getting together with my family, aunts, uncles and cousins too, at my Grandmother’s house for Sunday dinner. Grandma would slave away in the kitchen all day long and fill the table with a meal that was fit for a king. In my memory, Sunday dinners are a big deal. That said, sometimes it’s nice to spend the day in the kitchen, but it’s also nice when a recipe comes along that’s special enough for the highly acclaimed Sunday Dinner and doesn’t take all day to prepare. This is one of those recipes. In fact, it’s so easy, I threw it together for a Monday night dinner instead.
I started by making an easy relish that I used to top my pork tenderloin. The pairing of pork and apples is classic. Why not pump up the volume and add dried cherries and sage to the mix? The relish is fresh and healthy, the perfect complement.
Next, I prepared my pork. I mixed together orange marmalade, a little orange juice and some minced rosemary. This would be the glaze for my pork.
After browning the pork quickly in a pan, I transferred it to a foil covered baking sheet. I gave it a quick brush of the orange glaze and popped it into the oven.
I basted the pork every five minutes, until my meat thermometer read 150*. This only took about 15 minutes. Once it was up to temperature, I removed the pork from the oven and let it rest for five minutes. Resting time is crucial! The pork will continue to cook as it rests and if you cut into the pork right away, all of the juices would come right out of it. Let it rest and the juices settle up nicely, leaving you with a moist tenderloin instead of a shoe sole. Also, please note that the pork will most likely still be pink in the middle. That’s OK. There was a longstanding belief that in order for pork to be safe to eat, it couldn’t be pink. For years, chefs have turned their noses up at that claim and they were finally vindicated last year when the USDA changed their cooking guidelines for pork. Pink pork, if cooked to the proper temperature, is perfectly safe as well as perfectly delicious. Why eat a hockey puck if you don’t have to? Please see the article here for more information. If you still don’t like the idea of eating rarer pork, it’s OK. Just roast it a little longer.
As the pork was in the oven, I cooked up a little orzo and steamed some broccoli to have with it. I threw in a little butter with the orzo and a little more chopped sage, that I had leftover from making the relish.
In just around 30 minutes, I had a beautiful meal! One worthy of a cozy, family dinner on a Sunday, but appreciated just as much on a busy weeknight.
Have a wonderful weekend!
ROSEMARY & ORANGE GLAZED PORK TENDERLOIN WITH APPLE-CHERRY RELISH
Adapted from Cuisine Lite
- For the relish:
- 1/4 cup white wine vinegar
- 2/3 cup dried tart cherries
- 1/2 cup diced tart apple, such as Granny Smith
- 1 Tbsp. minced shallots
- 1 Tbsp. minced fresh sage
- 1 tsp. sugar
- 1 tsp. extra virgin olive oil
- For the pork:
- 1/4 cup orange marmalade
- 1 Tbsp. orange juice or orange juice concentrate
- 1 Tbsp. minced fresh rosemary
- 1 Tbsp. vegetable or canola oil
- 1 pork tenderloin, trimmed (18 oz.)
- Heat the vinegar in a small saucepan until boiling. Pour hot vinegar over the cherries in a small bowl and let stand for five minutes. Stir in the apple, shallots, sugar and olive oil. Set aside.
- Preheat the oven to 400*. Line a baking sheet with foil. (Do not skip this step! It’s a HUGE mess saver.)
- Melt the marmalade in a small bowl in the microwave. Add the orange juice and rosemary.
- Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the pork and brown on all sides, for about 5 minutes. Remove the pork and place it on the foiled baking sheet. Baste the pork with some of the orange mixture.
- Roast the pork for 5 minutes and then baste again with the marmalade mixture. Roast, and baste, until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the pork registers at 150* (160* for medium-well). Transfer the pork to a plate and tent with foil. Let it rest for five minutes before slicing. Serve with relish.