Recently I was preparing a pork tenderloin for dinner and that pork tenderloin is a blank canvas. It can be used in recipes such as stir fry, grilling, roasting or pan cooking. The recipe I recently found on www.lidiasitaly.com, Pork Tenderloin with Balsamic Onions, helps show the diversity of this cut. There’s only a handful of ingredients, besides the pork, to make this dish. You’ll need extra-virgin olive oil, kosher salt, yellow and red onions, shallots, fresh bay leaves and balsamic vinegar. It will take approximately 45 minutes, with slicing the onions taking the most time.
I prepared my onions first as I wanted to allow enough time for them to soften and turn golden. I made one pork tenderloin for two people and cooked the pork in a cast iron skillet as it’s cooked over medium high heat, without any oil. It takes about 10-15 minutes to reach an internal temperature of 145°. You want the pork to have a juicy, pink center.
The onions are cooked separately in another skillet in a bit of olive oil seasoned with salt and fresh bay leaves, which infuses a wonderful floral note. When done, balsamic vinegar and some water is added to create a glossy glaze.
To serve, slice the pork and place it on a bed of balsamic onions. What a delicious meal! My pork came out perfect and the onions were tender with a tasty sauce. An easy recipe to prepare on a weeknight or even for company.
Pork Tenderloin with Balsamic Onions
Filetto di Maiale con Cipolle all'Aceto Balsamico
Recipe by Lidia Bastianich, www.lidiasitaly.com
Serves: 4 to 6
2 pork tenderloins, trimmed (about 2 pounds)
5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive ol
1-1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
3 cups thickly sliced yellow onions
3 cups thickly sliced red onions
3 cups thickly sliced shallots
3 fresh bay leaves
¼ cup balsamic vinegar
Cut the pork tenderloins in half crosswise. In a large bowl, toss the pork with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and 1 teaspoon salt.
Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. When the skillet is hot, add the pork (without adding any oil to the skillet) and sear on all sides, about 8 minutes. Reduce the heat to medium, and continue to cook the pork, turning occasionally, until the internal temperature reads 145° F on an instant-read thermometer, about 10 to 15 minutes. Let the pork rest 5 minutes on a cutting board before slicing.
Meanwhile, in another large skillet over medium-high heat, heat the remaining 3 tablespoons olive oil. When the oil is hot, add the yellow onions, red onions, and shallots. Season with the remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt, and toss in the bay leaves. Cook and stir until the onions are completely wilted and golden, about 15 minutes.
Reduce the heat to medium, and add the balsamic vinegar and 1/4 cup water. Cover, and simmer until the onions are tender, about 10 minutes. Uncover, increase the heat to medium high, and cook, stirring, until the liquid is reduced to a syrupy glaze.
Remove the bay leaves and keep the onions warm while you slice the pork. Slice the pork into 1-inch-thick slices against the grain. Serve the pork on a bed of the balsamic onions.
A former teacher, shop-a-holic, empty-nester redefining quick, family approved dinners.