Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Weeknight Recipe Wednesday

Life is busy. It's a fact. Whether we have errands to run after work, appointments to attend, or just plain get stuck in traffic on our way home, there never seems to be enough time to get everything done in the evening. Planning meals for the week helps with this problem. It allows your brain to rest instead of trying to come up with a dinner plan. It allows you to grocery shop once during the week rather than multiple trips each time you realize you're out of something. It ensures you can come up with quick, weeknight meals like these and have more time for errands, exercise, and your family.

Bonus, this is a recipe I printed ages ago and had never cooked. Which means I'm working toward that goal of making all the internet printed recipes in my cabinet.

Pork isn't my favorite food, but I don't mind it. My mental aversion to pork is much stronger than my actual taste aversion. I actually think it's pretty good, but my mind can't seem to get past it. I didn't like meat as a kid, and I'm sure I had a lot of negative connotations of "pork" as part of that. Since we didn't eat pork much growing up (probably because I didn't like it), I'm just now learning to cook/eat/tollerate/like it. It's a process.

I also didn't eat a lot of brussels sprouts growing up. Actually, I don't ever remember eating brussels sprouts once growing up. But the first time I had them, I loved them. I rarely meet a vegetable I don't like. Normally I just boil or steam them and add a spritz or two of spray butter, but this meal has inspired me to look for other brussels sprouts recipes. Delicous!

Mustard-Rubbed Pork Tenderloin with Brussels Sprouts Ragout
Adapted from Fitness Magazine
Makes 4 servings

10 ounces frozen Brussels sprouts
¾ teaspoon salt
¾ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 large pork tenderloin (about 1 ¼ pounds), butterflied
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons olive oil
¼ cup white wine
¼ cup chicken broth
½ cup diced pancetta or bacon
1 small (or half large) onion, thinly sliced

1. In a medium pot, cook frozen brussel sprouts in boiling water about 4 minutes. Drain and let cool slightly. Then cut into halves.

2. Sprinkle half teaspoon each salt and black pepper on pork and then spread with mustard. (Note, we basically just cut our pork loin in half lengthwise instead of having a true butterfly cut that is still connected) In a 12-inch skillet, warm 1 tablespoon olive oil over medium-high heat; add pork and cook 7 minutes. Turn and cook 6 minutes more. (Our pork loins were nowhere near done after 13 minutes. Ours took about 25 minutes, a smoke alarm going off, and a few burnt edges.) Use a meat thermometer to make sure internal temperature is 155-160 degrees. Remove from pan and let rest for about 5 minutes. Add wine and chicken broth to the pan and stir, scraping up brown bits. Set aside and keep warm.

3. Warm remaining oil in a small sauté pan (our 9 inch pan worked well) over medium-high heat. Add pancetta or bacon and sauté until brown, stiring occasionally, about 3 minutes. Reduce heat to medium and add onion; cook until translucent, 5 minutes. Add Brussels sprouts, cook 3 minutes more. Season with remaining salt and pepper.

4. Slice the pork and place on plates. Drizzle some of the sauce you made with the wine over the pork. Add the Brussels sprouts mixture to the plate and enjoy!

No comments: