Saturday, October 15, 2011

Pork Loin with Spring Vegetables

So, day three of me cooking like an adult.  Once again, a simple task.  This was Wednesday Night's meal and it proved to be quite good, although not quite what I had hoped it to be.  Once again, the recipe came from my Weight Watchers cook book, and I think it has helped me to get the general idea of cooking a pork loin, although I may change a few things when I make this again.

The Recipe:
1 pound pork tenderloin, trimmed
1 tablespoon chopped fresh chives
3/4 tsp salt
1 (9-ounce) package frozen artichoke hearts, thawed
1 pound baby potatoes, cut in half
1/2 pound asparagus, trimmed
1 cup baby carrots
2 teaspoons olive oil
1/4 tsp black olive

Sprinkle pork with chives and 1/4 tsp salt.  Spray large nonstick skillet with nonstick spray and set over medium-high heat.  Add pork and cook until browned on all sides, about 5 minutes.

Transfer pork to roasting pan and combine with artichokes, potatoes, asparagus, carrots, oil, remaining salt and pepper (these were all mixed together prior to being transferred to roasting pan).  The vegetables should be arranged around the pork.

Roast, stirring vegetables once, until vegetables are tender and instant-read thermometer inserted into center of pork registers 60*F, about 25 minutes.  Let pork stand 5 minutes before slicing in 12 slices.  Serve with vegetables.

The result:

What I actually did & my feelings on the dish:  I added onions, and since I couldn't find frozen artichoke hearts, I omitted them.  Also, I put too many carrots.  The pork wasn't browned enough.  I was afraid to let it brown too much, and I shouldn't have been.  It was good, but browning it a bit more would have made it better.  Also, there wasn't enough flavor.  The vegetables were good, but in reality, the only thing that actually flavored the meat (as far as seasonings/herbs) was salt, pepper and chives.  So the pork was delicious, it was moist, it wasn't dried out, but it needed more flavor.  Maybe some garlic, mushrooms, less carrots and the artichokes, and I think it will taste completely different.  Also, because I used frozen asparagus, it was almost over-cooked, whereas the carrots were almost under-cooked.  I didn't like the mixture.  Next time, it will need to be done with all fresh ingredients rather than a mix of fresh and frozen.

Oh, and by the way, I actually used a 1-pound pork loin (which is what the recipe called for).  There's NO WAY you could slice it into 12 pieces, serve 4 people and all be satisfied.  I sliced it into 8 pieces, and served two people, and thought that was a more realistic amount to fill me and Scott.

Overall, a good dish, but it definitely could use some tweaking.  I definitely have some ideas for the next time I make this, and I think it will be just as easy.  :o)

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