Growing up there were two versions of pork dishes in our house: pan fried pork chops or city chicken (cubes of pork threaded onto a skewer, rolled in flour and either pan fried or baked – definitely would not be mistaken for the current day satay or skewers). Neither of which were a favorite of mine. Sorry mom.
Times have changed and now we can get beautiful pork tenderloins at the grocery stores at a reasonable price. But because of all the hub bub over animal fats, today’s pork is almost as lean as white meat chicken and can dry out as much as those old pan fried pork chops. Ick! But this too can be overcome with some careful cooking methods.
We’ve been eating a lot more salads around here lately. Partly because I’ve started working out again and partly because Craig has realized it’s almost swimsuit season (read that as he’s paying the price from all of his travel and eating with reckless abandon – note to traveler’s…just because you ate that luscious dessert in another country does not mean that those calories (and fat) stay in that country…they come back with you on the plane). I wanted to make this pork have some intense flavors, since it was our only meat meal of the week. By slow cooking this in the pan, after browning the meat with its spiced crust, the pork is so tender you don’t even need a knife to cut it and it melts in your mouth.
Relationships don’t just include our significant others.
Dear Mom – I know we haven’t always gotten along, like for most of my first 20 years on this planet, but I think we fared pretty well all in all.
I survived 6 years of organ lessons and through that learned discipline and gained fabulous finger tone. That’s probably why I can type so quickly now. I also don’t slouch when I sit, unlike a lot of people these days who look like Shrek when they’re sitting down. I have no idea if I can still play, but because of the lessons I was able to teach myself flute (insert “this one time at band camp” joke here) and guitar. I also have a profound appreciation of all kinds of music, so thanks for making me do that.
You also taught me manners. To call my elders Miss/Mrs./Mr. and to respect them. You took me to restaurants when I was small and taught me how to order and eat properly as well taught me how to behave (if I didn’t there was a swift dismissal from the premises with a lightly whimpering child upon return). Of course when I give some kid the evil eye now, that’s running around a restaurant like a whirling dervish under the nose of his/her self-indulgent parents who couldn’t care less that their special little bundle of joy is destroying any semblance of enjoyment for the rest of us, I know that the voice coming out of my mouth is yours when I grunt at the parents and say “REALLY?”
You endured all of my romantic phases with only slight bits of obvious trepidation. If it was more than that, bravo for not letting it show. The older men, the no men (no it was not a lesbian period in college), the goofy one’s who would show up at your house looking for me and you would cover for me with whatever story I fed you so that they’d leave and finally Craig. You loved his suit, but as for the prior marriage, you let your feelings be known…and subsequently ignored. Now you adore him as much as I do and I thank you for that.
Thank you for raising me to have, in my opinion, a good head on my shoulders. We still don’t always agree on everything, and probably never will, but I think that’s okay, now we’re learning from each other. I Love You!
- 1 – 1 1/4 – 1 1/2 Pound Pork Tenderloin
- 1 1/2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
- 1 1/2 Tablespoons Butter
- Juice from 1 Orange
- 1 Teaspoon Ground Ginger
- 1 Teaspoon Ground Cumin
- 1 Teaspoon Garlic Powder
- 1/2 Teaspoon Kosher Salt
- 1/2 Teaspoon Ground Mustard
- 1/4 Teaspoon Ground Cinnamon
- 1/4 Teaspoon Ground Cardamom
- 1/4 Teaspoon Ground Cloves
- 1/4 Teaspoon Ground Black Pepper
Mix dry ingredients 5 – 13 in a small bowl.
Rub dry ingredients mixture onto pork tenderloin. Cover all sides of the meat using all of the mixture.
In a saute pan, large enough to hold the pork tenderloin, add in the olive oil and butter. Heat over high heat until butter is melted and combined with olive oil.
Add dry rub coated pork tenderloin to hot pan and brown meat on both sides.
Reduce heat to low. Insert a meat thermometer into the thickest portion of the tenderloin and cover the pan with a fitted lid.
Continue cooking meat until the thermometer reads 150 – 155 degrees Farenheit. (Make sure you are using a thermometer that can be left in the meat while it cooks, otherwise insert and instant read thermometer after 15 minutes of cooking to check temperature.)
It should take 15 – 20 minutes of cooking to reach that temperature. It may take 5 or 10 minutes longer depending on your burner.
Once the temperature is achieved, remove the tenderloin from the pan, set it aside and tent with foil.
Return the pan to medium high heat and add in the orange juice to the pan.
Stir to combine and cook for 5 minutes to reduce the sauce.
Slice the pork and drizzle with the pan sauce and serve.