Saturday, April 7, 2012

Mushroom stuffed pork tenderloin with roasted tomatoes

I was talking to a friend yesterday and she was mulling over what to cook for a dinner party, she wanted to cook fish, but she said the fish alone was going to cost over $40.00.  I said I entertain a lot and most of the time I make chicken or pork, one reason being that you can feed quite a few people very reasonably.  Actually I like chicken and pork as well though.

Any way we were have a couple of neighbours over for dinner and I went to an old standby pork tenderloin.  This is not only relatively cheap, but it is low fat, tasty and very versatile.  Since it is a long weekend and I have a little more time than usual, I decided to do something a little fancier than normal.
Which involves "butterflying" the tenderloin to make it much larger and flatter, therefore making it easier to stuff.  I took pictures, so I am hoping it makes sense.

First take the pork tenderloin and cut it length ways 1/3 down and do not cut all the way through, so that you can open it up making the meat already twice as wide with one side being twice the thickness of the other side.

Now turn over the tenderloin.

On the thicker side (that would be on the side closest to my camera, cut length ways again from the middle and again not all the way through so that you can open it up again.

Now cover the meat with a piece of plastic wrap and bash it with a rolling pin until it is flat, this really should not take very many bashes.

You now have a fairly wide piece of meat just begging for stuffing. You could use any stuffing that you want here, but my husband loves mushrooms so I made a mushroom stuffing.

2 tablespoons of olive oil
1/2 large yellow onion chopped
1 garlic clove chopped
3 cups of mushrooms chopped
1/4 cup of dried mushrooms (I used lobster mushrooms but morels or any other kind would do)
1 sprig of fresh thyme
1/2 cup of white wine
1/2 cup of the mushroom soaking liquid or chicken stock
2 tablespoons of fine dry breadcrumbs
About 1 cup of grated mozzarella or any other cheese you may have on hand.
2 cups of cherry tomatoes

Put the dried mushrooms in a small bowl and cover with boiling water to reconstitute them. While they are soaking up the water saute the onion and garlic in the olive oil gently until the onion is soft and translucent.  Then add the chopped fresh mushrooms.

Cook until they have collapsed down and are just starting to brown, by this time your dried mushrooms should be plumped up enough.

Add the wine and the soaking liquid, and chop up the reconstituted mushrooms and add to the mushrooms in the pan along with the thyme.

cook until the liquid has reduced down by half and then add the breadcrumbs, which will absorb the remainder of the liquid and hold the stuffing together. Add salt and pepper to taste, turn off the heat and set aside.

Sprinkle half the cheese on to the butterflied pork tenderloin.

Then place the stuffing down the middle and top with a little more cheese.

Pull the sides up to cover the stuffing and using a bamboo skewer hold closed.  I also put a little tin foil on each end to hold the ends together.

Brown the pork in a large frying pan with a little olive oil, until it is browned on all sides.

Add the cherry tomatoes to the frying pan take off the tinfoil and place in a 400 oven.

Cook for about 15  minutes until the pork is cooked through and the tomatoes are collapsing.

Remove the skewer and serve.  This looks quite impressive and tastes delicious. I served it with some roasted potatoes and a warm green salad with asparagus and almonds, dinner fit for a king, or good neighbours.

With these longer days, we actually got to eat dinner in bright day light, which makes taking pictures so much easier.  Roll on summer.

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