I'd love to tell you all about this amazing Pork Tenderloin with Black Cherry and Raspberry Reduction, but you'll have to excuse me for a minutes while my family and I finish devouring it. Oh my. So sorry about that.
Wow, I want more. You know what that means don't you? That means you have to give this recipe a try. Thankfully it's not difficult at all.
For those of you who just want to see the recipe, it's posted at the bottom of the page. But for those who've never cooked a tenderloin before, let me walk you through the process.
Preheat your oven to 375F. Wash and dry your tenderloins. They're relatively small (1.25 - 1.5 pounds each), and they're often sold in packages of two. Be careful not to confuse them with much larger, less expensive "loins".
There's a small portion of opaque connective tissue on each tenderloin - they call it "silver skin. Silver skin gets very tough, almost inedible when cooked, so you definitely want to trim it off. Simply run a sharp knife against the underside of the silver skin to remove it.
Tenderloins are pretty lean, but trim any large bits of fat if you find any. Don't worry about small specks - they'll melt into the roast and add lots of flavor. Notice that one end of the tenderloin is much thinner than the rest.
Fold the thin part over onto itself and tie it with a piece of kitchen twine. You can skip this step if you like, but you should really give it a try. Doing so will protect the thin portion from overcooking.
Now it's time to season our tenderloins well with lots of Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper. Don't be shy.
Time to sear the meat - do this in an oven-proof frying pan with a few tablespoons of olive oil. Sear the tenderloins well on all sides. As soon as all sides have attained a lovely brown color, pop the pan into your preheated 375F oven until the internal temperature or the tenderloins reaches 160F - about 20 minutes.
I can't wait!! But wait, we're not ready to eat just yet. Remove the tenderloins from the pan and place them on a cutting board to rest. Do Not carve the tenderloins yet. Your patience will pay off, I promise.
Now, see all the yummy goodness in the bottom of the pan? That's the base for our wonderful sauce (I mean reduction).
Deglaze the pan by adding the vinegar and chicken stock - you can throw in the garlic at this point, or wait until you add your preserves, whatever. I like to use this flat paddle to gently dislodge all the yummy brow bits from the bottom of the pan. Lesson: the technical term for all that brown yumminess on the bottom of the pan is "fond". The fond will dissolve into the chicken stock and vinegar. Mmmm - that's good. Very, very good.
By the way, be careful with that pan handle - it'll be extremely hot after being in the oven.
Now we choose our weapon, I mean preserves. I decided to use a combination of Black Cherry and Raspberry, but you can use any fruit you like.
Whisk the preserves into the pan. Don't be alarmed if you see a few chunks of fruit. I even added a few wild raspberries just to give it more gourmet appeal.
Bring the mixture to a boil and reduce by half - this should take about 7 or 8 minutes. Once the sauce is reduced, turn off the heat and whisk in 2 tablespoons of cold butter. That's it folks. Easy!
Do a quick taste test and adjust your seasoning if necessary. Slice your tenderloins into diagonal medallions and drown them in copious puddles of this luscious reduction.
I'm telling you what, I'll be making this dish again and again.
Pork Tenderloin with Black Cherry and Raspberry Reduction
makes 4-6 servings
2 pork tenderloins - (be sure to get tenderloin, not loin - tenderloins weigh about 1.25 to 1.5 pounds each)
kosher salt and black pepper to taste
1/3 cup white vinegar
1 cup chicken stock
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 - 3/4 cup fruit preserves (I used 1/2 c black cherry and 1/4 c raspberry)
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold
Preheat oven to 375F.
Prepare tenderloins by removing the "silverskin"; discard.
Fold the thin end of the tenderloin on itself and tie with kitchen twine; pat dry and season generously with Kosher salt and black pepper.
Heat a large oven-safe frying pan on high heat until very hot (really good quality cookware is a must).
Sear all sides of the tenderloins in a bit of olive oil until they have a nice brown crust all over (brown equals flavor!!).
Transfer the pan to a preheated 375F oven and roast for about 15-20 minutes or until the internal temperature of the pork reaches 145F (medium-rare) to 160F (well done).
Remove the pan from the oven; place tenderloins on a cutting board to rest for 10 minutes while you make a sauce in the same pan the tenderloins roasted in.
To make the reduction (sauce), return the pan to the stove top over high heat.
Deglaze the pan by adding the vinegar and chicken stock; scrape up all the brown bits from the bottom of the pan.
Add the minced garlic and preserves; whisk to combine.
Bring the mixture to a boil and reduced by half.
Remove from heat and whisk in cold butter.
Slice pork diagonally into medallions; serve with generous amounts of sauce.
Note: we practically licked the sauce off our plates it was so good. I think the sauce would also be good on pork chops, chicken breasts, even turkey. I can't wait to make it again.
recipe adapted from Chef John