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Sunday, September 20, 2009

Easy Pork Tenderloin in the Oven

We recently put up a guest post from our friend Kevin, who wrote about foolproof pork tenderloin on the gas grill, using the 7-6-5 method.

Last week we added pork tenderloin to a menu, but did not have a gas or charcoal grill handy, so we decided to see how simply we could make a pork tenderloin (two actually, because they always come two to a package) in the oven. Turns out, it's fairly easy.

Here's how we did it:

We heated about a quarter cup of olive oil and 1 Tablespoon of butter over medium-high heat in an ovenproof sauté pan, and rubbed a small amount of kosher or sea salt (1 teaspoon) on the tenderloins, along with about 2 teaspoons of ground pepper from a grinder that included all colors of peppercorns.

We quick-fried about a dozen sage leaves and drained them on paper towels. This is optional, but you'll like it if you do it.

Next, we browned the two tenderloins on all sides in the fat, about 5 to 7 minutes.

We put the pan in an oven preheated to 375 degrees, in the middle of the oven. We roasted them for exactly 15 minutes (until a thermometer in the loin read about 140 degrees). Then we put the loins on a plate or cutting board and covered them with foil; they continued cooking while we made a sauce.
Kevin marinated his tenderloins in a mustard vinaigrette, which we think is a great idea. But we decided to make a mustard-wine sauce to pour over the meat.
First we poured the fat out of the pan and returned it to the stovetop over medium-high heat. We deglazed the pan with about a cup of red wine and reduced it by half. Then we added salt and pepper.

During the reduction process, we whisked in a few tablespoons of mustard. One T of mustard makes a great, mellow sauce; 3 T makes a spicier sauce.

Then we cut the loins on the diagonal, about 5/8-inch thick, and finished them with a fried sage leaves and a drizzle the wine-mustard reduction.

Serve with a Pinot Noir or a Côte du Rhône.

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