You know life is sweet when you have dinner at the Goat Lady Dairy Farm and this meal in the same weekend. With a round of Goat Lady Camembert as inspiration, I put together a weekend meal of Camembert & Simple Kneads Baguette, Herbed Pork Tenderloin with Pancetta and Fried Capers, Giant Butternut Squash Tortellini with Brown Butter and Walnuts and a light arugula and lemon salad. This meal was over-the-top good and a great compliment to a good botle of red wine, Harvest Moon on Pandora and the first fireplace lighting of the season. Additionally, it left enough pork for sandwiches for the week and tortellini in the freezer for another night.
I highly recommend this menu for a special – 0r ordinary – evening in. It is foolproof and one of the best meals I’ve made in a long time!
Herbed Pork Tenderloin with Pancetta and Fried Capers from William Sonoma Entertaining with the Seasons
- olive oil
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary
- 2 tablespoons fresh sage
- 1 tablespoon fennel seeds, crushed
- 1.5 teaspoons salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground pepper
- 2 pork tenderloins, about 1 to 1 1/2 pounds (typically comes in 1 package)
- 4 cloves garlic, chopped
- thinly sliced pancetta
- 1/4 cup capers
- 1/2 cup olive oil
Assembly: Marinate the pork in a mixture of olive oil, rosemary, sage, fennel, salt, pepper and garlic for about 4 or 5 hours (or overnight). About an hour and a half before you want to serve, take the pork out – and rub off a little of the marinade (not all of it, this isn’t scientific). Place the pork on a roasting pan and layer slices of pancetta over the top of the tenderloins. Let the meat come to room temperature – this will take about an hour. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Roast the pork for about 30 minutes or until the meat is 150 degrees in its thickest part. At this point you may want to quickly broil the top of the meat if the pancetta isnt crispy enough (that was my solution). Let the meat rest about 10 minutes and slice thinly. Arrange the meat and scatter fried capers on top!
I recommend frying the capers while the meat comes to room temperature or roasts. Drain the capers and dredge in a small bowl of cornmeal. Heat olive oil on high and fry the capers in batches until golden brown. If the oil is too hot, you will notice. Just play with the temperature until the fry for about a minute until golden brown. This step may seem daunting but it is totally worth it!