If you have been reading my column for awhile, you know how much I like pork tenderloin. I think it is far more versatile than chicken.
Julia Child once said she could eat chicken every day because there are so many ways to prepare it.
In this month’s issue of Bon Appétit, they have suggested hosting a party on Aug. 15, which would have been her 97th birthday.
The suggested menu is straight out of her “Mastering the Art of French Cooking.” Of course, they include a recipe for chicken.
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Today’s recipe is one of my new favorite ways to prepare my favorite: pork tenderloin. It also takes advantage of the glorious tree-ripened fruit now available in South Sound.
My first summer here, I was blown away by Olympia Farmers Market. However, just as I had become thoroughly addicted to Rainier cherries, they were suddenly gone. Gone! Then came the peaches and nectarines. You know you have a perfect, tree-ripened peach when you take a bite and the juice drips off your elbow. When they were gone, the Walla Walla onions appeared. Finally, in September came the wonderful crisp apples.
I always want August to last and last but at the same time, I can hardly wait for the apples. We have so much to be grateful for in Olympia. And I haven’t even mentioned all the berries, many of which are free for the picking if you aren’t intimidated by the thorny bushes.
This recipe is easy to prepare and relatively quick. Choose a pork tenderloin that weighs about a pound and a half. Cut it into half-inch slices and lay them in a flat dish in a single layer. In a small dish, mix together 2 tablespoons of balsamic vinegar; a 1/4 cup each of orange juice and soy sauce; two cloves of garlic, crushed; and a 1/4 cup of olive oil. Whisk it together and pour over the tenderloin slices.
Using tongs, pick the slices up so the marinade can run under each one.
If you were lucky enough to find a dish that was just the right size to accommodate the slices, this amount of marinade will just cover them.
I had to press down on a few of the slices so the marinade would flow over them.
Set the dish in the fridge for 20 minutes while you prepare the rest of your meal.
When you are ready to finish the meat, take each piece out of the dish and shake off any excess marinade.
I put mine on a cutting board that has a groove around the sides to catch any additional drips.
Using paper toweling, pat them dry.
Heat enough high-smoke-point oil like peanut or coconut to just cover the bottom of a large sauté pan.
Turn the heat up until a drop of water does a little dance when tossed in the pan.
Put the pork slices in the sauté pan for two minutes on each side. Set the timer for this. You want them to be seared on the outside and a bit pink and tender on the inside.
Remove them from the pan to a serving dish. Turn the heat down a little and pour the marinade in the pan. Heat it thoroughly, adding a scoop of peach or apricot jam (about a half cup) and stir together. Pour the sauce over the pork slices.
Cut up a ripe peach, nectarine or apricot and arrange the slices over the meat.
And don’t forget, the film “Julie & Julia” opens Friday.
In the previews, it appears that Meryl Streep has done it again, capturing Julia Child’s unforgettable voice.
I suspect it will be two hours and three minutes of foodie heaven.
Karyn Lindberg has called Olympia home since 1988. She is passionate about cooking and entertaining. She believes good recipes are meant to be shared. You can reach her at email@example.com.