March 16, 2011

Pork Medallions with Apples and Sage

Pork and apples go great together.  Apple wood bacon is perhaps as good as bacon gets, while pork chops with applesauce is a comfort food classic.   With that delicious synergy in mind, I decided to toss together a quick, tasty pork-and-apples dish using tender, quick-cooking pork tenderloin medallions.

The result was, I'm happy to report, truly excellent.  The sauce was full of rich apple flavor, augmented with apple brandy and accented with a bit of cinnamon, but also quite savory due to chicken broth, onions and sage.  The pork medallions were perfectly cooked in just a couple minutes, and the quick browning made them flavorful but still moist and tender. 

I served the Pork Medallions with Apples and Sage with some baked squash and wild rice (I'll be presenting the recipes for those parts of the meal in a separate post).  Together, all this made for a really, really nice meal, plus some excellent leftovers that we enjoyed at work for the next couple days.

I don't have anything else other to say about this very basic and entirely satisfying recipe, other than if you try it out for yourself, I pretty much guarantee you'll be happy with the results. 

Pork Medallions with Apples and Sage

yield = 6 servings

2                   pork tenderloins (about 2 1/2 pounds total)
                     salt and pepper to taste
2                   tablespoons olive oil
2                   tablespoons unsalted butter
2                   Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and sliced
1                   large yellow onion, chopped fine
1                   cup apple juice
6                   tablespoons apple-flavored brandy
1/4                teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2                cup low sodium chicken broth
2                   tablespoons chopped, fresh sage
1/3                cup heavy cream

Remove any silverskin and excess fat from the tenderloins.   Pat them dry with paper towels, then slice into 1/2 inch thick slices.  Pound slices until 1/4 inch thick and season on both sides with salt and pepper.

Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat until shimmering.  Cook the pork medallions in batches, making sure to not crowd them too much.  Cook until browned (about 2 minutes), then flip and brown on the other side.  Transfer cooked medallions to a platter, cover with foil and repeat until all the pork medallions have been cooked.

Add the butter to the skillet and spread with spatula or spoon until melted.  Add the apple slices and chopped onion.   When the onions have started to brown, stir them and flip the apple slices to brown on both sides.  When the apple slices have softened on both sides, stir in the apple juice and brandy and sprinkle with cinnamon. 

Cook, stirring occasionally, until the liquid has reduced to a syrupy texture, then add chicken broth and sage and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until the broth is mostly reduced down.  Stir in cream and cook for a minute or so to heat through, then spoon sauce over the pork medallions and serve.

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