Pork fillet or tenderloin is very lean, so it can be quite a tricky meat to cook with. With a flick of a finger the once rosy and tender flesh can pale, shrivel and turn as tough as old boots. After a lot of experimentation, I have finally mastered one technique to cook this stubborn cut.
What is there not to love about this recipe? It uses meat and fruit, one combination I cannot live without. To complete the dish is a lovely creamy sauce with a hint of sweetness, thanks to the prunes. Once again the French have created a classical dish, which originated in the orchard-rich Touraine region.
P.S. I am submitting this recipe to Cate at Sweetnicks‘ weekly ARF/5-A-Day event. Prunes are rich in anti-oxidants you see…
No one can resist the temptations of a soft and moist pork tenderloin with prunes. An amazing combination of ingredients tied together with a creamy sauce. The sauce calls for white wine, vegetable stock and lots of double cream.
- 2 pork fillet (tenderloin), weighing anything between 400-600g each
- 16 prunes, pitted
- 15ml (1 tbsp) oil
- 45g (1½ oz) butter
- 1 onion, finely chopped
- 150ml (5 fl oz) white wine
- 250ml (8½ fl oz) chicken stock
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 thyme sprigs
- 250ml double (heavy) cream
- Preheat the oven to 180°C (fan 170°C/350°F/gas 4). Trim the pork fillet, removing any fat or sinew from the outside.
- Heat oil and half the butter in a frying pan, add the pork fillet and cook until lightly browned all over. (Retain the cooking oils in the pan.) Remove and place in an oven-proof dish and bake for 15 minutes for medium to well-done or 20 minutes for well-done. Leave in a warm place for 10 minutes before slicing in 2.5cm (1 inch) diagonal wedges. (See notes.)
- For the sauce, reheat the oils in the frying pan and add the remaining butter. Add the onion. And cook over a low heat until softened but now browned. Add the wine, bring to the boil and simmer for 2 minutes. Add the stock, bay leaf and thyme and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes or until reduced by half.
- Strain the stock into a bowl and rinse the frying pan. Return the stock to the pan, add the cream and prunes and simmer for 8 minutes, or until the sauce thickens slightly.
- Serve the slices of pork with the creamy prune sauce over it.
- Serve with steamed new potatoes, carrots and broccoli.
- If the prunes you are using are hard and tough, the following will help. Put the prunes in a small saucepan, cover with cold water and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer the prunes for 5 minutes. Drain well.
- If you are going to cook the pork to well done, I suggest you take the following route. After the fillets have been browned all over, remove and place on a rack in a baking dish. Add 125ml (4½ oz/½ cup) water to the baking dish and bake for 20 minutes. Leave in a warm place for 10 minutes before slicing in 2.5cm (1 inch) diagonal wedges. Follow the rest of the recipe.
- If you’re struggling to get hold of any bay leaves, feel free to use any of these bay leaf substitutes.
- Prep Time: 35 minutes
- Cook Time: 15 minutes
- Serving Size: 1 serving
- Calories: 544
- Sugar: 9.1 g
- Sodium: 243 mg
- Fat: 32.2 g
- Saturated Fat: 17.1 g
- Carbohydrates: 16.7 g
- Fiber: 1.7 g
- Protein: 42.9 g
- Cholesterol: 206 mg