Monday, 13 March 2017

Pork Tenderloin with Dried Cherries and Goat Cheese

We visited a local goat cheese farm, and came home with some beautiful, creamy, tangy goat cheese. Of course I had to use it right away. I paired it with some dried cherries left from the granola I had made, and some of the open cherry wine in the fridge.

I had a pork tenderloin, and used the cherries and wine, along with some chicken stock, to make a sauce. Two red skinned potatoes and a small zucchini were grated and combined with egg left from egg washing a pie, to make a crispy potato cake. Crispy, steamed green beans rounded out the meal.

A couple of hours before cooking the pork, heat:

2/3 cup dried cherries
1/4 cup cherry wine

When the wine starts to boil, remove the pan from the heat and leave the cherries to soak. They will absorb most of the wine.

Grate a small zucchini, combine with a good pinch of salt and allow to drain in a strainer for half an hour. Squeeze out as much liquid as you can.

For the potato cake, combine:

1/4 cup minced onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
1 egg
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

Add the zucchini to the egg and onion, along with:

2 small red skinned potatoes, grated, about 2 cups

Mix well to combine.

Turn the oven on to heat up to 375F. Heat a non stick pan until hot, adding enough olive oil to coat the bottom and sides.

Place the potato and zucchini mixture into the pan, pressing it firmly down.

Cook for a couple of minutes on high, and then turn the heat down to medium low, and cook until the bottom is golden and crisp, about 10 - 15 minutes.

Place a plate over the pan, and holding the plate firmly, quickly flip the pan over so that the potato cake is crispy side up on the plate.

Heat the pan again, and add a bit more olive oil.

Carefully slide the potato cake back into the pan, with the uncooked side down.


Follow the same cooking procedure as for the first side. Continue cooking until the potato and zucchini are cooked through and tender in the middle of the cake, but crisp on the outside. You can flip it over again if you feel you need to.

Slice the pork tenderloin into 1/2" thick slices, and lightly season with salt and pepper on both sides.

In a hot pan, using some olive oil, sear the pork on both sides.

Remove from the pan, and place on a plate and into the oven to finish cooking while you make the sauce.

Keep the pan on a medium high heat, and add:

1/2 cup chicken stock

Bring to a boil, and scrape the browned bits off the bottom of the pan.


the soaked cherries and any remaining cherry wine

Allow it to simmer, adding more chicken stock if you feel it is needed. Reduce it to the consistency you like.

When the pork is cooked, it can be plated on top of the potato cake, and drizzled with the sauce and cherries. Add crumbled goat cheese to complete the sauce. It will melt into the hot sauce, turning it creamy and tangy.

  • The cherry wine I was using was a drier wine; if you have a fruit wine that you feel is too sweet you can still use it, but adjust it with a bit of vinegar. That being said, any open wine can be used for this sauce.
  • Whatever dried fruit you choose to use for a sauce like this....cherries, cranberries, blueberries...make sure they are just dried and not also sweetened.
  • Do  not season the sauce until you are ready to serve; as it reduces any salt in the chicken stock will intensify.
  • Other meat choices are chicken breasts, beef tenderloin, rack of lamb, roasting the pork tenderloin whole and then slicing it.
  • When making the potato cake, go easy on the salt as the zucchini has salt added while it drains. This helps to pull out the water in the zucchini.
  • The two potatoes I used were each about the size of a peach.
  • Using butter instead of, or as well as, olive oil will increase the crispiness of the potato cake.
  • The potato cake can be made ahead and then re-heated in the oven or in the same pan it was cooked in.

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