Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Pork Tenderloins and Sweet Potatoes

To my delight, Mom and Grandma decided to entrust me with cooking dinner and we all agreed pork tenderloin sounded good.  Between the three of us, we had very different methods.  I marinate, Grandma pan fries with a dijon mustard topping, and Mom pounds it thin, covers it in panko, and fries.

I won (even though from the sounds of it everyone got the short end of the stick - their methods sound delicious) and they let me marinate the pork.

Before we jump into how I cooked the tenderloin, you should be aware I am pretty sure what I always thought was tenderloin was actually just loin.  There is a difference!

Grandma cut the tenderloin into little medallions for me.  Tip - freeze the meat for a while and it will be much easier to cut.  I prepared the marinade around 11:00 am, which meant we let the meat sit for about 6 hours.

Pork Tenderloin Marinade:
1/3 cup olive oil
1/3 cup lemon juice (about 1.5 lemons)
1/3 cup low sodium soy sauce
2 tablespoons ginger (I use the stuff in a jar that is already in a paste)
2 tablespoons chopped garlic
1 tablespoon thyme (separate leaves from 6 fresh sprigs)

Mix together the marinade ingredients and marinate the meat for at least 1 hour and up to one day.

When ready to cook, preheat the oven to 400*.

Place paper towels on the bottom of a plate, place the medallions on top, then place another paper towel on top.  Pat so the medallions are not as wet, just damp.  Season with salt and pepper.

Pour 2 tablespoons of olive oil into a pan and heat over medium high until sizzling.  Sear your pork medallions - about one minute on each side.  If you have more than a pan full of medallions, only sear in one layer at a time.

When all the medallions are done, place on a cookie sheet and into the oven.  Cook approximately 15 minutes and then devour!


As a side dish, we had sweet potatoes.  We got four from the grocery store and they were HUGE.  With the three of us, we only managed to eat one and a half.  To prepare, we poked holes all over them, then just set them straight on the rack in the oven, heated to 400*.  I let them cook for a little over an hour, until they were soft to the touch.

Sweet potatoes are pretty hard to mess up and they make a delicious side dish with pork. Leftover sweet potatoes are even better.

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