Dinner Tonight: 30-minute Entrees
Pick pork tenderloin for an economical protein
For a quick weekday meal -- or a terrific entree for dinner guests -- this apricot pork tenderloin dish delivers. (Bill Hogan/Chicago Tribune)
For a quick weekday meal — or a terrific entree for dinner guests — a pork tenderloin delivers. Our version pairs the meat with dried fruit and a touch of garlic.
Before starting the meat, boil up water for some Yukon gold potatoes to mash and serve with the pan juices. Add a green vegetable, perhaps some asparagus, then finish the meal with a delicately flavored sorbet and small cookies.
Often pork tenderloins come two per package. Prepare both if you like, or freeze the other for a second meal. Lighten the side by serving rice fluffed with toasted slivered almonds and fresh chopped parsley.
Try a riesling (plays nice with the fruit) or a light lager.
Apricot pork tenderloin
Prep: 5 minutes
Cook: 20-25 minutes
1 pound pork tenderloin
1/2 teaspoon each: salt, cracked pepper
1/4 cup apricot preserves
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar or lemon juice
1 small clove garlic, pressed
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 cup each: water, chopped dried apricots, chopped prunes
1. Pat tenderloin dry; rub with salt and pepper. Combine preserves, vinegar, garlic and mustard in a small bowl. Brush some of the mixture over tenderloin; reserve extra mixture.
2. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Brown tenderloin on all sides, about 5 minutes. Add water, chopped fruit and any remaining apricot mixture to skillet. Cover; reduce heat to medium. Cook until thickest part of meat is pink, 10-15 minutes. Remove cover; raise heat slightly. Cook until pan juices reduce slightly, about 5 minutes. Thinly slice pork; top with fruit mixture.
Per serving: 307 calories, 34% of calories from fat, 12 g fat, 3 g saturated fat, 75 mg cholesterol, 26 g carbohydrates, 25 g protein, 377 mg sodium, 1 g fiber.