Thursday, December 25, 2014

Dinner on Deadline: Pan-Seared Pork Tenderloin With Tarragon

Pan-Seared Pork Tenderloin With Tarragon. (Photo for The Washington Post by Deb Lindsey)
Pan-Seared Pork Tenderloin With Tarragon. (Photo for The Washington Post by Deb Lindsey)

This dish is surprisingly elegant for a midweek meal. You might want to stash it in your cook-for-unexpected-company file. Pork tenderloin cooks fast, and even faster when sliced into thin cutlets.


Pan-Seared Pork Tenderloin With Tarragon


4 servings

1-pound pork tenderloin

Kosher salt

Freshly ground black pepper

1 large shallot

3 cloves garlic

3 tablespoons unsalted butter

4 stems tarragon

3/4 cup no-salt-added chicken broth

1/4 cup dry white wine (may substitute 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar)

1 teaspoon sugar

1/2 lemon

1. Cut the silver skin and any fat from the tenderloin. Cut the meat into four equal portions. Place each one between 2 pieces of plastic wrap; pound to a thickness of 1/4-inch. Pat each piece dry with paper towels, then salt and pepper both sides lightly.

2. Mince the shallot and garlic; combine. 

3. Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add a tablespoon of the butter; tilt the pan to coat it evenly. Add 2 of the pork cutlets and cook for 1 to 2 minutes on each side or until browned and cooked through. Transfer to a plate; cover loosely with foil to keep warm. Repeat with remaining cutlets.

4. Finely chop the tarragon leaves.

5. Add the shallot and garlic to the skillet, stirring to coat. Cook for 1 minute, until the garlic is fragrant, then add the broth, wine, and sugar. Squeeze in a tablespoon of lemon juice. Increase the heat to high; stir to dislodge any browned bits and cook for 3 or 4 minutes or until the liquid has reduced by one-third.

6. Add any meat juices that have accumulated on the plate of cutlets. Whisk in the remaining tablespoon of butter and the tarragon; cook for 1 minute, then pour the sauce over the cutlets. Serve.

- Adapted from The New Cast Iron Skillet Cookbook: 150 Fresh Ideas for America's Favorite Pan (Sterling Epicure, 2014)

Per serving: 240 calories, 24 g protein, 3 g carbohydrates, 13 g fat, 7 g saturated fat, 95 mg cholesterol, 130 mg sodium, 0 g dietary fiber, 2 g sugar

Bonnie S. Benwick Washington Post
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