I have been searching through recipes lately trying to find some ways to branch out a bit. It seems I have been on a bit of an Italian food kick, which is understandable; I am Italian and I could probably eat my weight in pasta.
However, I have actually reached a point where I am a little bored with it. That is the reason for my concentration on fish dishes lately; however fish, generally speaking, is expensive. And although I love cooking it because it is so versatile, I thought I would give some other meats a try and perhaps make things a little more economical for all of us.
Now this recipe is truly off the top of my head. Therefore I am very glad that it worked. The pork is so tender when prepared this way that it will just about melt in your mouth. The trick is in the marinating (well, and the wrapping in bacon). The longer this dish is marinated, the more tender it gets. I let it go in the fridge for about nine hours. The next time I cook it, however, I may change one thing. I think I will add a little of the white wine to the marinade. The acids in the wine will break the pork down even further making it all the more delicious.
So let’s cook and give the other white meat its day!
2 sheet trays covered with foil
Plastic zippered bag for marinating
1 large skillet
Toothpicks, one for each medallion
Small skillet for the cream sauce
Tip: If you have a cast iron skillet or a skillet that can go from the stove-top to the oven, use it. It will eliminate one sheet tray.
1 pork loin cut into 2 inch medallions
1/2 strip of bacon per medallion
3 tbsp flour with a dash of salt and pepper on a small plate
Tip: Along with the salt and pepper in the four you can add a little cayenne pepper and some garlic powder. The cayenne adds warmth, not heat, and gives the seared crust a little punch
Drizzle of olive oil for the veggies
1 cup each baby carrots, broccoli and cauliflower
2 tbsp oil in the skillet
For the marinade
½ cup olive oil
1 tbsp Balsamic vinegar
1 tbsp Herbs de Provonce
1 tsp each salt and pepper
1 tsp red pepper flakes
1 tsp garlic powder or chopped garlic
For the cream sauce
1 pint heavy cream
¼ c white wine
2 tbsp roasted garlic
½ tsp each salt and pepper
½ tsp basil
¼ onion, diced and caramelized (cook in 1 tbsp butter until the onions are caramel in color)
Remove pork medallions from the marinade after a minimum of two hours; all day is best. Wrap a half of a piece of bacon around each medallion and secure with a toothpick. Set aside on the counter. It is best to have the pork close to room temperature before cooking. In the skillet heat two tablespoons of oil. Dredge the top and bottom, but not the bacon wrapped sides, of the pork in the flour and carefully set in the pan. Brown to a crust on both sides and place in a 375-degree oven for about 35 minutes. After removing, cover the pan with tin foil or a plate and set aside while you prepare the cream sauce and veggies.
Putting It All Together
On a sheet tray lined with foil, spread your veggies. Drizzle with olive oil and a little salt and pepper and roast in the oven for about 30 minutes at 375 degrees. When done, the veggies should be brown at the tips but nor burnt.
In the same pan with the caramelized onions, add the wine and the roasted garlic. Simmer until reduced by half and add the cream. Continue to simmer until the sauce is thick and creamy.
Remove the toothpicks from the pork and unwrap the bacon from the sides. The bacon adds a lot of flavor and keeps the pork moist; however, it does not cook enough to compliment the texture of the dish.
Take the pork medallions and add them to the sauce, coating only one side. Allow to warm in the sauce for several minutes. Spoon a bit of the sauce onto the plate and lay the medallions on top. Serve with the veggies and maybe a baked potato. The pork will melt in your mouth and the veggies will be flavorful and crisp. This is truly a great dish!