This is a grand day everyone. For those of you who haven’t noticed, there has not been ONE recipe on ThePortoBellas featuring meat since we’ve started. Which lead many to believe that we were a vegetarian blog. But it’s time to come clean: JulieC is a vegetarian and I am not. This being said, JulieC and I came to the understanding that I would be responsible for creating meat recipes for our blog. The truth is, I enjoy eating meat that is prepared for me, not by me. Raw meat doesn’t inspire me like veggies, dairy or wheat does. I just poke it with my finger, add salt & pepper, and most often under or over cook it. The whole thing is all very confusing for me really.
My best friend’s husband, Philippe, has been following our blog from the beginning. He is also a man who hunts on the weekends and can cook a mean piece of meat. You can imagine the looks of disappointment I got from him each time I posted yet another meat free recipe. Philippe, after three long months of patiently waiting, I dedicate this next creation to you. May your carnivorous belly be filled with joy! Did I mention this piece of meat is stuffed with meat? Woah, Meta…
Ingredients for the stuffed pork tenderloin:
- 1.5 lbs pork tenderloin
- 2 Tbsp of goat cheese, at room temperature
- 2 Tbsp of caramelized onions
- 3 strips of bacon, roughly chopped
- 1 1/2 Tbsp of pecans, roughly chopped
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 2 Tbsp of grapeseed oil
- Fresh basil leaves for garnish
Ingredients for the maple glaze:
- 4 Tbsp of maple syrup
- 2 Tbsp of balsamic vinegar
- 1/2 Tbsp of Dijon mustard
- Salt & Pepper to taste
Directions: Preheat oven to 400°F. Line a baking pan with parchment paper and place in the oven while you prepare the stuffed pork (this will allow the pork to transfer from the skillet to the oven without losing heat).
In a skillet or in the microwave, cook the bacon until slightly crispy. Set aside. Pat down the pork tenderloin with paper towel to absorb all the of the raw juices. This will help the tenderloin sear better in the skillet. To prepare the tenderloin for stuffing, I followed this simple and helpful video:
Yay! Your pork is ready to be stuffed. Spread the goat cheese evenly on one side of the tenderloin (lengthwise) about 1/2 inch from the side. Spoon the caramelized onions, bacon and pecans on top of the cheese. Add a couple of turns of freshly ground black pepper. Starting from the side with the stuffing, roll the tenderloin back into its original shape so that it’s firm but not to tight. Using butcher string (this is my favorite part!), make 6 ties at 1/2 inch intervals. The ties at the ends of the tenderloin should be very close to the edge and a little tighter than the other ties to prevent the stuffing from oozing out.
In a large skillet on high heat, add 2 Tbsp of grapeseed oil. It’s going to be important to verify the heat of your skillet: I usually just place my hand under the faucet and sprinkle a few drops of water in the skillet. If it sizzles and evaporates instantly, that’s when you know it’s at the perfect searing temperature. Add the tenderloin and sear on all sides until browned.
This will take a few minutes, so just enough time to prepare the maple glaze. In a bowl, whisk together the maple syrup, the balsamic vinegar and the Dijon mustard. Add salt & pepper to taste. Set aside. Dance a little.
Transfer the tenderloin from the skillet to the baking sheet (that you have taken out of the oven!). With a glazing brush, brush the maple glaze on all sides of the tenderloin. You don’t have to overdo it! One thin coat will be plenty. Set aside the rest of the glaze. Place the tenderloin in the oven and roast for 15-20 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool for 5 minutes. With a sharp knife, cut tenderloin in 1 inch strips and garnish with fresh basil leaves and add leftover glaze to taste.
Here’s a song from The Magnetic Fields titled “Andrew in Drag”. I couldn’t help but laugh walking down the street listening to these lyrics. Enjoy!