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If you're hosting a party, pork tenderloin in cilantro sauce is an elegant, simple dish that allows you extra time to enjoy with your guests.
This dish you can prepare ahead of time and heat before serving. Similarly, if the meat is already seasoned, it can cook in a matter of minutes. I can't tell you how many times this dish has gotten me out of a jam.
Pork tenderloin is low in fat, firm and absorbs well a variety of marinades and it's excellent for cooking on the grill or oven. It's also relatively economical and even elegant.
For years, it's been thought that pork is not healthy. Even until recently, nutrition and health experts recommended limited consumption of pork, believing it was high in cholesterol. Recent research has revealed that pork is as healthy a meat as any other.
For best results, cook the tenderloins until the meat reaches 145°F on a meat thermometer. Since it is a lean cut, it tends to dry, so 145°F is a good temperature since it will continue to cook from inside.
My adobo, that marvelous cilantro sauce that cover my pork tenderloins, is easy to make. If you prefer parsley, it's a good substitute, or you can use your imagination and combine both herbs and other ingredients to taste, as long as they don't conflict.
Allow the meat to rest at last 10 minutes before slicing to allow for maximum juiciness. Discard any left excessive marinade and any marinade used with the raw meat.
I serve my tenderloins with jasmine rice, a Thai variety that cooks just like regular white rice, only it's more aromatic and flavorful. Jasmine rice has become very popular and that has made it a bit pricier than other varieties.
I guarantee this dish is going to make you look good with your guests. It will allow you to enjoy more time with them and to be the perfect host.
Yields 4 servings
Pork Tenderloin Ingredients:
2 pork tenderloins (10-12 ounces)
1 teaspoon fresh thyme, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 teaspoon fresh oregano, finely chopped
1 teaspoon fresh parsley, finely chopped
1 tablespoon canola oil
Salt and pepper to taste
1. Preheat the oven to 375ºF.
2. Place the thyme, garlic, oregano, parsley, salt and pepper in a mortar. Crush well with the pestle to create a paste. Spread the paste on the tenderloins, covering all sides. Cover the tenderloins in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 to 4 hours.
3. Remove the tenderloins from the refrigerator and discard the excess marinade.
4. Heat a large frying pan on medium-high. Add the oil and brown the tenderloins 3 minutes on each side.
5. Place in the oven for 10 to 12 minutes or until a meat thermometer registers 145ºF. The center of the meat should be pink.
6. Place the tenderloins on a cutting board or level surface and let rest for 10 minutes before slicing.
Cilantro Sauce Ingredients:
Juice of 1 lime
¼ cup cilantro leaves
1 garlic clove
¼ cup natural yogurt
1 scallion stalk, finely chopped
½ teaspoon salt
1. Combine all ingredients in a blender.
2. Blend until thick and creamy. Adjust seasonings.
Watch the video of this recipe.
Other recipes by Denisse:
Pastelón de Yuca y Pollo
Polvorosa de Pollo (Venezuelan-style Chicken Pot Pie)
Cod in Tomato Sauce
Mexican-Style Shrimp Ceviche
Pulled Chicken with Jalapeño-Honey Mustard Panini
The Mexican Tamale: A Delight for the Palate
Shrimp Asopao with Pigeon Peas