Some people say that its hard pressed to find a meat leaner than chicken breast, and thankfully they are wrong. Dinners at our house would be as boring as the fourth hour of a chess game if this was true.
The meat that might surpass you as being just as lean as chicken breast is pork tenderloin. No, silly, i didn’t say pork belly or bacon, but the tenderloin, prized for it’s leanness and versatility. For you steak-lovers, it’s like the filet mignon of the pig, except ten times cheaper than it’s cow counterpart.
Buy an entire tenderloin, unwrap it, season with salt and pepper, throw it in the oven and cook for 20 minutes or until center reaches 150F (or blush pink.) While the pork is cooking, make this grilled tomato salsa from celeb chef Marcus Samuelsson’s New American Table cookbook. Dinner’s done, totally healthy, checkmate.
Grilling the tomato for the “salsa” is genius – this warm sauce can be used for so many different applications, grilled chicken, pan-fried tofu, tossed in a salad, over fish, pan-fried pork chops, well – you get the point. You can do this on your outdoor grill or inside on a grill pan, like any of these (which is what we did for this recipe)
I’m a lucky gal, especially in this photo with Top Chef Winner Hosea Rosenberg!
We get to work together along with nutrition goddess Mitzi Dulan and Food Network’s $10 dollar dinners Melissa d’Arabian on the consumer advisory panel for the pork board (who represents both small and large farmers). We braved the Iowan winter earlier this year to meet up and eat. and drink. and eat. and drink some more.
Okay now on to the recipe!
Pork Tenderloin with Warm Grilled Tomato Salsa
- 1 lb pork tenderlion
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- freshly ground black pepper
- 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
- 1/2 teaspoon honey
FOR THE SALSA:
- 3 3 plum tomatoes, cut in half lengthwise
- 1/2 jalapeno pepper, seeded and ribs removed (if desired)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- Juice of half a lemon
- 1 teaspoon white wine vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1 tablespoon mint, chopped
- 1 tablespoon basil, chopped
- 1 green onion, thinly sliced
For the pork:
- Preheat oven to 350F.
- Mix mustard and honey together. Smear the honey mustard mix on the pork tenderlion covering all sides. Season with the salt and pepper. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and bake for 20 minutes or until the center reaches about 150F. Let rest for 10 minutes before slicing. Serve with the Grilled Tomato Salsa
For the Grilled Tomato Salsa:
- Heat a grill pan over high heat.
- Toss the tomatoes and jalapeno pepper with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. place on the grill and cook for 3 to 4 minutes on each side. Remove from the grill and let cool.
- Chopped the tomatoes and pepper. Combine with the lemon juice, vinegar, cumin, salt, pepper and the remaining olive oil in a medium bowl. Fold in the basil, mint and green onions.