Friday, March 26, 2010

Quick Meal Friday: Herbes de Provence Pan-Roasted Pork Tenderloin and Roasted Veggies

Those herbes de Provence finally got some use in my kitchen. I couldn't wait for fall! The nights are still cool so roasting isn't completely off the wall for another month or so. (I'm in the San Diego desert, where all seasons are short except for the one called "meltingly hot.")

For this simple meal, I roasted some potatoes, turnips, and carrots seasoned with herbes de Provence while I did a little easy work on a small pork tenderloin on the stove, finishing that with a simple *hold your breath* herbes de Provence-scented pan sauce. This magical herb mix really tastes like spring in a jar, with the sweet fennel seed and fragrant lavender shining through. (I'm very glad I went easy on the lavender though, just something to keep in mind if you mix up a batch yourself.)

Pan-Roasted Pork Tenderloin and Roasted Root Vegetables a la Provence

For Roasted Root Vegetables:
4 small carrots, peeled and chopped
3 turnips, peeled and chopped
3 potatoes, chopped
1 tbsp olive oil
1/2 tsp herbes de Provence
salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 400F. Toss the vegetables, oil, herbs, salt and pepper on a half-sheet pan, and roast about 20 min, stirring to loosen stuck vegetables after 10 min.

For Pan-Roasted Pork Tenderloin with Provencal Pan Sauce:
small pork tenderloin, roughly 1 pound, trimmed of fat and silver skin
2 tsp olive oil
salt and pepper
2 shallots, finely diced
1/2 cup dry white wine or vermouth
2 tsp white wine vinegar
2 tsp Dijon mustard
1 tsp herbes de Provence
1 1/2 tsp butter

In a 10-in skillet or saute pan (best not to use nonstick since we want browned bits to collect for the pan sauce), warm the olive oil over medium-high heat. Dry the tenderloin and season both sides with salt and pepper. Brown the pork on all sides, turning after 2-3 min or when the meat loosens from the pan without a need for tugging. When all sides are browned, check the internal temperature with a meat thermometer. You want to remove the meat to a plate when it reaches 150F, and cover with foil to keep warm.

Lower the heat medium, and add shallots to the pan (do not wipe out the pan first). Stir until softened but not browned. Raise heat to medium-high; add wine and stir frequently as alcohol evaporates. Lower heat back down to medium. Continue stirring and add vinegar, mustard, and herbs; season with salt and pepper. The mixture will thicken quite a bit in about 1 min. Swirl in butter and stir well to combine. Drizzle the warm sauce over the tenderloin, either before or after cutting the meat.

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