Quick & Easy Pork Medallions with Romesco Sauce

Cook, Weeknight Dinner, What We're Eating

Pork tenderloin is both tender and lean, so take care not to overcook it — the center of the pork should be just barely rosy when it is done. To round out the meal, serve with sauteed seasonal vegetables and a simple grain side dish, like couscous.

 

Pork Medallions with Romesco Sauce

 

Tip

For a lower-fat dish that’s still big on flavor, serve the pork with applesauce instead of the romesco.

1 lb. pork tenderloin

1/4 cup walnut pieces

1/2 tsp. crushed fennel seed

1/2 tsp. ground cumin

3/4 tsp. salt

2 tsp. smoked paprika

1 clove garlic, chopped

1 1/2 cups roasted red bell peppers, jarred or homemade, drained, liquid reserved

4 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil

1 Tbs. dry sherry or red wine vinegar

1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper

 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Trim fat and any silvery membrane from tenderloin and cut crosswise into rounds about 1/2 inch thick.

 

Spread walnuts on a baking sheet and toast until lightly browned and fragrant, about 10 minutes. Immediately pour onto a plate to cool.

 

In a small bowl, stir together fennel seed, cumin, 1/2 teaspoon of salt and 1/2 teaspoon of paprika. Rub spice mixture into both sides of pork rounds and let stand at room temperature while you make the sauce.

 

In a blender or food processor, combine walnuts and garlic and process until finely chopped. Add roasted peppers, 2 tablespoons of olive oil, sherry, remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons paprika, cayenne and remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and whirl until smooth. Stir in up to 1 tablespoon roasted-pepper liquid if sauce is too thick. Set aside.

 

Heat remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. Working in batches if necessary, add pork loin rounds to pan in a single layer and cook just until browned and still faintly pink in the center, about 2 minutes per side. Transfer to a platter and let rest for about 5 minutes.

 

Divide pork among 4 dinner plates and spoon romesco sauce over meat. Serve right away.

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