Pork Tenderloin with a Fig wine reduction sauce... mouth watering yet?
Anyway, I digress. This week I decided to try figs with pork. I chose the tenderloin cut since I consider figs a luxurious and exotic fruit and the two would be very happy together in a pan... LOL. I was right. This dish turned out so incredibly good that I want to live next to an orchard so as to have an endless supply of them. So easy to prepare and yet so "gourmet" in appearance and flavor, you will certainly want to try it out on your loved one. Tonight, mine happened to have been my Mom. Whoever your loved one is, be sure to serve this dish under candle light because, well, just because. Without further dissertation, here is what you will need:
1 Tenderloin of Pork, about 1 1/2 lbs.
5 medium fresh Figs, sliced in halves
1 1/4 cup of red wine
1 teaspoon of fresh minced Tarragon
1 teaspoon of tomato paste
2 teaspoons of crushed garlic
2 teaspoons of minced fresh parsley
2 shallots, finely chopped
1 tablespoon of Worcestershire Sauce
2 tablespoons of butter
2 tablespoons of olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste and for the meat (keep shakers handy)
Start by gathering all your ingredients together and as usual, make sure everything is minced, measured, and chopped. I can't say enough how prep work makes cooking so easy!
Pat your tenderloin with a paper towel so that it's dry and has no excess moisture. This will make your meat brown much nicer. Now cut it in two halves, salt and pepper it liberally and set aside for a minute. Preheat your oven to 400 (200c).
In a medium size oven safe pan, heat the olive oil over high heat until the oil smokes, usually a few minutes. You want your pan and oil hot to get a nice browning crust around the meat. Now saute each Pork Tenderloin half approximately 2 1/2 minutes on each side. Cut one of the tablespoons of butter in half and place on top of each piece of meat after you have sauteed for the 5 minute period. Place the pan in the oven uncovered and let cook for approximately 20 minutes. After 20 minutes, set oven to broil and cook for an additional 3 to 4 minutes. USING OVEN MITTS, remove the pan and place it on the stove top burner you were using and transfer the tenderloin to a plate, placing a foil wrap loosely over it to stay warm.
Turn stove top burner to medium high and saute the shallots and garlic in the same pan with the pan drippings for about 5 minutes. Next, add the wine and bring to a boil. Scrape the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon to deglaze it. Once boiling begins, reduce heat to medium low and continue to cook uncovered for about 10 minutes to burn the alcohol out and to reduce the liquid by half. Now add the remaining tablespoon of butter to the sauce and stir until completely melted. The sauce should begin to thicken a bit.
Continuing to cook, reduce heat to low and add the tomato paste and stir so paste is well blended into the sauce. Add the tarragon, Worcestershire sauce, and salt and pepper to taste and add the figs. Cook for about 5 more minutes, stirring occasionally and turning the figs over to coat them completely. Turn off heat, stir in the parsley, and let pan set. While sauce is setting, take your tenderloin and slice 1/2 inch thick slices. Place a small spoonful of the sauce in the middle of each dinner plate and then place 3 slices per person. Finish by placing a fig half on top and a couple on the side of each meat serving and drizle some sauce over the meat.
As a side dish, you notice that wedges of Russet potatoes were used. This was simple to prepare. Use 3 small Russet potatoes and peel them. Cut them in half and cut each half in thirds. About one minute before you place your pan in the oven, add the potatoes around the Pork Tenderloin and allow to saute a bit. Then do as instructed above and place the pan in a 400 degree oven.
This truly is a wonderful dinner, full of savory flavors. The potatoes will be perfectly cooked, just lightly browned and puffy. The tenderloin is absolutely moist and cooked to just below medium with a very light pink in the center, perfect doneness for this cut of meat. Enjoy and let me know what you think !