Roasted Pork Tenderloin Stuffed With Fruit
Main Ingredients - Double this for 6 people
Method1. Split the tenderloin lengthwise without cutting all the way through. Place between plastic wrap and pound as flat as you can with a kitchen mallet.
2. Sprinkle pork with salt, pepper and sugar.
3. Cook bacon, onion, garlic and apples together until bacon is giving up fat and onions and apples are softening. Mix in ¼ c craisins.
4. Cover the surface of the pork with apple mix.
5. Using plastic wrap to help you, roll pork up carefully (leaving plastic wrap on the outside) starting from short side to get a short, fat roll. Throw away plastic wrap. Tie with string or secure with small skewers. I use the 3-4" stainless steel turkey skewers rather than wooden toothpicks.
6. In a heavy skillet, gently brown the fillet in the 2tbsp melted butter. Add the stock and juice and scrape up all the bits from the bottom of the pan. Season with salt and pepper.
7. Cover and bake in a preheated 350° oven for about 40 minutes to 1 hour. I have found that if you brown pork well in a skillet it often needs only an additional 30 minutes cooking. Add baby carrots after 20 minutes, they give more taste and color to dish. Check to see if cooked by cutting in half through the center and look to see if any pink meat is still left. Pork suppliers say it should read 160° on an instant read thermometer, which is the temperature at which salmonella is destroyed. They also say we do not need to overcook pork as we used to do to prevent trichomonosis. Personally, I don't like pork pink in the middle. Juicy yes, pink no. I find if you remove pork when instant read thermometer reads 150°, cover it with foil, the internal temperature will rise to 160° without drying out the meat. Bacon in the stuffing can make the pork look pink but you would need to use more bacon than my recipe calls for.
8. Remove pork from the cooking dish, remove string or skewers. Allow to rest, covered, for about 10 minutes while finishing sauce. Then slice thickly and serve with sauce. About 2 thick slices each is a good portion with sauce and other vegetables.
9. Add craisins and bourbon to pan, thicken with mix of flour and butter (known as beurre manie), and cook for further 3 minutes over medium heat. Season to taste with salt and pepper if you need it.
10. Serve meat with a little sauce poured over and rest served in a gravy boat. Serve with sweet potato wedges cooked in little oil, salt and pepper in oven at the same time as pork, but in a separate dish.
Oonagh Williams, proprietor of Royal Temptations, has a Culinary Arts degree, offers Catering services, teaches a variety of classes in International Cooking, makes regular appearances on WMUR ABC Channel 9's Cooks' Corner and has her own series on Merrimack TV. You can contact Oonagh at 603-424-6412.