If you are looking for a lean protein to include in your diet or if you just want a seasonal take on a classic dish, pork tenderloin can be a great option. Pork loin is low in fat, high in protein and rich in vitamin B. It is a relatively inexpensive cut of meat and is always readily available. It is also versatile: you can pan sear it, oven roast it, or grill it–but whatever you do, don’t over cook it. Proper cooking is important with all pork products, to kill bacteria. So go get yourself a good instant read thermometer to take out the guess-work, if you’re concerned. But tan or white color can often mean the meat is overcooked, and will not be as juicy or flavorful. I serve mine a little on the pink side, though I know not every home cook is comfortable doing so.
The tenderloin cut is from the center of the pig just below the ribs. As the name suggests, it is a tender cut–and because of that, it is my preferred cut. Coated with a fresh herb rub, this recipe gives you a savory, flavorful, tender piece of mean that is complemented by a sweet, yet tart, rhubarb chutney. Perfect for Spring or Summer, great for quiet family dinners or large groups, you can’t get much simpler than this.
Seared Pork Loin With Rhubarb
- For The Rhubarb:
- 6 cups fresh rhubarb, small dice
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup water
- For The Pork:
- 2 pounds pork tenderloin (about 2 large), trimmed of fat and tendon
- 6 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme
- 2 teaspoons fennel seeds, ground in spice mill
- Step 1 For the Rhubarb: In a large sauté pan add the rhubarb, sugar and water. Bring to boil, stirring occasionally until the sugar dissolves. Reduce heat to low and simmer until the rhubarb is soft and beginning to fall apart, stirring occasionally, for about 15-20 minutes. Transfer the rhubarb to medium bowl. Refrigerate uncovered for about 1 hour until cold.
- Step 2 For The Pork: Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.
- Step 3 In a small mixing bowl add 3 tablespoons olive oil, the salt, pepper, thyme and fennel.
- Step 4
- Step 5 Using your hands, gently rub the herb mixture all over the meat. Place on the prepared baking sheet and let rest for about 15 minutes.
- Step 6 In a large sauté pan add the remaining 3 tablespoons oil and place over medium-high heat. Add the pork and sear on all sides until brown, about 6-8 minutes. Reduce heat to medium, cover and cook until the thermometer inserted into center of cut reads 155-160°F, about an additional 10 minutes.
- Step 7 Remove the pork from the heat, place on a cutting board and allow to rest for about 5 minutes before slicing. Cut crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick slices
- Step 8 arrange on platter and serve with the chilled rhubarb.