Food Flirt

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Location: Petaluma, California, United States

Jacqueline is an international award winning journalist whose stories about food never fail to tantalize her reader's taste buds.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Pork Tenderloin Aigre-doux

I came across this delicious sounding pork loin recipe served with a dried cherry sauce and decided to give it a try.  Yum!  It was a big hit with the friends I had invited to give it a taste.  Using fresh thyme and rosemary really added an earthy layer of flavor.  The cherry sauce was incredibly dark and luscious and very good.

Pork Tenderloin Aigre-doux

 The French term for the combined flavors of sour (aigre ) and sweet (doux ). An aigre-doux  sauce might contain both vinegar and sugar.


    * 3/4  cup  balsamic vinegar
    * 1/2  cup  green olives
    * 3/4  cup  dried sweet cherries
    * 1/2 cup  fat-free, lower-sodium chicken broth
    * 2  tablespoons  sugar
    * 6  garlic cloves
    * 3  thyme sprigs
    * 1  pound  cipollini onions, peeled (or 1 pound frozen)

Combine ingredients in a medium saucepan; stir in 1/2 teaspoon salt. Bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to medium-low, and cook 45 minutes or until onions are almost tender, stirring occasionally.  Add more chicken stock if necessary.  Uncover, increase heat to medium-high, and cook 7 minutes or until thick, stirring frequently.

Pork Loin

2 lemon zest grated
3/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (3 to 4 lemons)
1/2 cup olive oil
1 tablespoon minced garlic (5 cloves)
1 tablespoon minced fresh rosemary leaves
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme leaves
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
2 pork tenderloins (about 2 pounds)
Freshly ground black pepper

Combine the lemon zest, lemon juice, 1/2 cup olive oil, garlic, rosemary, thyme, mustard, and 1 teaspoon salt in a sturdy 1-gallon resealable plastic bag. Add the pork tenderloins and turn to coat with the marinade. Squeeze out the air and seal the bag.  Marinate the pork in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours but preferably overnight.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Remove the tenderloins from the marinade and discard the marinade but leave the herbs that cling to the meat. Sprinkle the tenderloins generously with salt and pepper. Heat 3 tablespoons olive oil in a large oven-proof saute pan over medium-high heat.  Sear the pork tenderloins on all sides until golden brown. Place the saute pan in the oven and roast the tenderloins for 10 to 15 minutes or until the meat registers 137 degrees F at the thickest part. 
Transfer the tenderloins to a platter and cover tightly with aluminum foil. Allow to rest for 10 minutes. Carve in 1/2-inch-thick diagonal slices. The thickest part of the tenderloin will be quite pink (it's just fine!) and the thinnest part will be well done. Season with salt and pepper and serve warm, or at room temperature with the juices that collect in the platter.  Either spoon cherry sauce over meat or serve in a small bowl.