Thursday, March 5, 2009

Peppercorn Pork Tenderloin with Cider-Dijon sauce and Apple Barley Salad

What? You weren't tired of looking at Squash Ribbons for a month? Well by all means feel free to use the photo for your desktop wallpaper. What's Cookin' is moving on...

I got a teaser magazine for Cuisine At Home a few months back and this is the third successful recipe I've made from it. It might look like it's got a lot of pepper on it, but it's only on one side and makes for quite a delish dish. The apple barley salad might look a little blah in the picture, but was a loverly compliment to the pork...the apple in the salad echoing the cider in the tenderloin sauce. All in all a nice change from our usual sear-it-in-a-pan-toss-it-in-the-oven method for cooking pork tenderloin and still a quick weeknight meal.

Peppercorn Pork Tendloin with Cider-Dijon Sauce:
(Cuisine at Home. Serves 2...or we used more than a 10 oz tenderloin and same amt. of sauce and served 3)

10 oz. pork tenderloin, trimmed, cut into 4 2-inch-thick medallions and seasoned with salt
1 Tbs. whole peppercorn blend, crushed (I used all black pepper and whizzed til still chunky in spice grinder)
2 Tbs olive oil, divided
1 Tbs minced shallots
2 tsp tomato paste
1/4 cup dry white wine
1 cup apple juice, or cider
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
1 Tbs Dijon mustard
Salt to taste

Dredge one side of each medallion in peppercorns.
Heat 1 Tbs oil in a nonstick skillet over med-high heat.
Add medallions, pepper-side down, and saute until brown, about 3 minutes.
Turn medallions, and continue cooking until pork reaches an internal temp of 145 on an instant read thermometer, about 6 more minutes.
Transfer medallions to a plate, tent them with foil, and let them rest.

Saute shallots and tomato paste in remaining 1 Tbs oil in same skillet over med-high heat for 1 minute.
Deglaze pan with wine and simmer until nearly evaporated.
Increase heat to high, add apple juice/cider and vinegar, and simmer until reduced to 1/3 cup, 5-7 minutes. Whisk in mustard and season with salt.

Apple Barley Salad:
(Adapted from Cuisine at Home)

I can't remember exactly what I did, but I might have used more of the "dressing" ingredients since I used more barley. Really, just keep tasting til you're happy with it. :-)

1 cup of barley...probably equals ~3 cups cooked? (orig. recipe calls for 1/2 cup instant barley)
1 sweet-tart red apple, diced (I used a Pink Lady...fab!)
1 Tbs unsalted butter
1 Tbs apple jelly (didn't use this and I wouldn't bother unless you already had some)
1 Tbs. fresh lemon juice (adjust to taste)
1 Tbs chopped fresh parsley
2 tsp sugar (I used agave nectar...and used a wee bit more since I didn't use any jelly)
Salt to taste

Cook barley according to package instructions and set aside.
Saute apple in butter in a nonstick skillet over med-high heat until it starts to soften, about 1 minute.
Stir in jelly (didn't), lemon juice, parsley, sugar/agave nectar, salt and barley.
Serve warm.

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