Thursday, June 9, 2011

Janice's Roasted Pork Tenderloin

This meal is a cinch to put together after you get home from work. Let it roast in the oven while you stick our feet up, have a cup of herbal tisane, and relax a while.

The nutrition facts for this fantastic meal can be found at the best FREE website to count your calories - Calorie Count

with tri-color fingerling potatoes and carrots
Roasted Pork Tenderloin


3 cloves garlic, minced*
1 tablespoon dried rosemary*
pepper to taste**
 2 pounds boneless pork loin roast
 1/4 cup olive oil (preferably habanero olive oil and you can use less if you like)
3 C carrots, chopped into large chunks
1 onion, rough chopped
 3/4 cup white wine
1 T olive oil

Optional additions: potatoes cut into chunks about the same size as the carrots and mushrooms!


Preheat oven to 350 degrees***.

Crush garlic with rosemary, salt and pepper, making a paste. Pierce meat with a sharp knife in several places and press the garlic paste into the openings. Rub the meat with olive oil and the remaining garlic mixture.

Spray baking pan with Pam and add the tenderloin.

Surround with chunks of onion and carrots. (alternative is to make a bed of the veggies and top with the tenderloin, that works too!) Sprinkle a little seasoning on the veggies. Drizzle veggies with the habanero olive oil. Add 1/2 C white wine or more - enough to make sure that there are no dry areas in your pan. If you don't want to use white wine you can use chicken stock.

Cover tightly with foil and bake for approximately 1 1/2 hours minimum (depends on how much your roast actually weighs, if it's 2 pounds or less, 1 1/2 hours should do it) - check with meat thermometer to make sure it is at least 160 degrees - the meat should be fork tender. Then remove from the oven, keep it tented, and allow to rest 10 minutes before serving.


Consider adding some corn starch and chicken broth to the sauce after you scoop out the onions and carrots in order to make a gravy - or, better still increase the wine to 1 cup when you roast the loin and then thicken the juices with a bit of Tony Chacheres Instant Roux! Just put your pan on a burner set to medium, shake and stir til it's right. Most excellent. To make even better gravy, make sure you use habanero oil to rub the pork loin.

* If you don't want to chop up garlic, try this terrific dried spice that is a combination of rosemary and garlic - Spice Island's Rosemary Garlic Blend - it comes in a "grinder" which I don't like as I had a hard time getting anything to come out. I just remove the lid and pour the stuff out into my hand, rub to "grind" and proceed. The proportion of rosemary to garlic is just perfect. Give it a try.  All you have to do is use 2 tablespoons and stuff some in the slits and rub the rest all over the roast! That spice is a great addition to wild rice, too.

** I don't use salt, you may want to do so, but it won't be in the nutrition facts.

*** ok, there are options here. If you don't have the time to cook 1 and 1/2 hours because you came home from work too dratted late but had a taste for this, you can cook it at 425  for an hour and you will have the tastiest juciest roastiest pork ever and the carrots will be nicely very well cooked. The meat may not be quite forkable, but it will be most tender. For that matter, tenderloins are flexible things indeed, if you think you might not have enough time, roast it at 425 for a half an hour first and then finish it at 350. I've done it all three ways. The first (for a small roast) and the latter get you fork tender pull apart pork. The middle way is slicing pork.

Now let's talk about "well cooked" carrots - if you are one of those that likes your veggies "crisp tender" you won't like the way these carrots turn out because they will be actually done and not just barely not raw as is consider "crisp tender" by so many. But if you are like me and want your veggies well cooked, you will be well pleased.

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