Monday, September 24, 2007

Spicing up that leftover pork tenderloin a la cauliflower

pork_tenderloin.jpg, originally uploaded by Cookthinker.

Those folks at Hormel know how to do a number on a piece of meat. They pump those pre-seasoned pork tenderloins with so much stuff, you just can't mess 'em up unless you fail to cook them long enough. Nevertheless, I had half of a peppercorn-spiced variety leftover from the weekend. I had perfectly grilled it on Saturday, so I didn't want to ruin it by nuking it for my Monday meal. It probably would have taken to the microwave just fine, but I wanted to preserve that tender juicy texture as much as possible so it wouldn't "taste" like leftovers.

Getting inspiration from Emeril, of all people, who I had watched earlier in the evening doing a fascinating treatment for cauliflower involving a hot pan, olive oil, garlic, crushed red pepper and lemon, I decided that may be a good option for my leftover tenderloin.

I cut the meat into into 1 inch thick medallions while heating a couple of turns of olive oil, three cloves of crushed garlic and a sprinkle of crushed red pepper. I added the medallions and sprinkled them with dried Italian seasoning. After they were heated through (about 6 minutes), I turned off the heat and squeezed the juice of half of lemon over the meat to tame the spice and add some citrus. The result was fork tender, more rounded in spice profile and seriously succulent.

Served with some gnocchi in gorgonzola sauce (a frozen emergency meal life-saver from Trader Joe's) and a simple green salad tossed with olive oil and balsamic vinegar and it was a painless elegant meal on the table in 20 minutes. I even had a cheap French Bordeaux from TJ as well to top it off. Who says you can't live large on a Monday night?

No comments: