Mon mari is a wimp.
He refuses to cook on the barbecue when it's freezing cold and pouring rain.
So, I'm still in the kitchen, forced to do the cooking. On the bright side, having the oven on helps heat the house……
Pork tenderloin is one of my favorite cuts of meat. It's juicy and tender (if not over-cooked), versatile and lends itself very well to stuffing.
Here I stuffed it with savory mushrooms and roasted it on a bed of onions.
Stuffed Pork Tenderloin on a Bed of Golden Onions
Preparation and cooking time: 45 minutes
- 14oz (400gr) pork tenderloin
- 3 tbs olive oil – 1 for stuffing and 2 for basting
- 1 1/2 tsp paprika
- 1 clove garlic
- 1/3 cup chopped mushrooms, about 1oz (3gr)
- 2 tbs dry bread crumbs
- 1 tsp dried basil
- 2 tbs red wine vinegar
- Caramelized Onions
- 1 1/2 onions
- 1 tbs butter
- 2 tbs red wine vinegar
- 2 tbs brown sugar
- The stuffing: Chop mushrooms and mince or crush garlic.
- Heat 1 tbs olive oil in small skillet over medium heat. Add paprika and sauté for 1 minute.
- Add mushrooms and garlic and sauté for 3 – 4 minutes, until starting to brown and soften.
- When mushrooms are done put into a small bowl and add bread crumbs and basil; mix well.
- The pork: Butterfly pork tenderloin – cut it in half lengthwise leaving 1/4 inch intact along the edge, so that you can open it like a book.
- Open it and give it a couple of whacks with a meat mallet so that it lies flattish… or pound lightly with the edge of a plate. You just want it to be flat and easy to work with.
- Spread mushroom mixture on one side of pork about 1/8 inch from the edge.
- Fold other side over and tie with kitchen string. Cut five 6 inch lengths of string and wrap around pork and tie every 2 inches – making certain that you do one as close to each end as possible.
- Golden Onions: These are started in a skillet and finished in the oven
- Slice onion thickly.
- Heat butter in a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add onions and sauté until tender, about 5 minutes.
- Add vinegar and brown sugar. Stir well to melt sugar and combine.
- Spoon onions into a small roasting pan, arranging so pork will just fit on top.
- The rest: In a small bowl whisk together remaining 2 tbs olive oil and vinegar.
- Place pork on onions and roast in 400F (200C) oven for 25 – 30 minutes, depending on size, until done, basting periodically with oil/vinegar mixture.
- When done, slice and serve.
Note: Pork is done when internal temperature reaches 145F (recently lowered from the old 160F – nice of them to validate what I've done for years).
Rumor has it that the Lot et Garonne is not the only place having a cold, wet spring.
To cheer me up (and you if you're amenable) I thought I would post photos from Monet's Gardens in Giverny. We were there four years ago, in the spring…. This is what spring should look like.
And a bit about our visit as well….
Did you know that one cannot limp on both legs at the same time?
I know that.
Now: Do as I say; not as I do.
The most important thing I tell anyone coming to Europe is to wear comfortable shoes.
They don't have to be sensible… But they do have to be comfortable.
Wandering the beautiful, Monet-designed gardens of Giverny… I ran out of Bandaids (plasters).
And I was ever so grateful that my anal-retentive little self always has a stash in my bag.
Next time it will be a bigger stash.
In my defense I did bring my most comfortable pair of walking shoes fit to be worn in public.
In my stupidity/chronic lateness/everything at the last moment/procrastination I did not wear them a few times first.
They're not new. They're old, comfortable, well-worn favorites.
It's just that I so seldom wear proper shoes that my feet balk at the idea when I do.
I spend the winter wearing felt clogs inside and rubber Wellie clogs outside.
I spend the summer wearing nothing inside and rubber Wellie sandals outside.
My feet are spoiled.
The hour or two I spend, a few times a week out in public, wearing, er, 'better' clogs or sandals (this is farm country, not Paris) hardly counts.
My feet are not accustomed to the confines of proper shoes.
I had blisters on my heels.
I had blisters on my toes (open-toe shoes – it's summer… And Giverny is only an hour from Paris. I have some standards – or, at least, I did.)
I had blisters on my blisters.
I left a trail of Bandaid wrappers.
I walked the last bit barefoot….Ahhhhhh!
But, I did not miss a nook or cranny.
I want to go back every week for the rest of the year.
I want to become an artist in residence… even if I'm not any good.
I want to sit in the gardens and stare and paint and draw….even if I'm not any good.
I want to lay on the wisteria covered bridge and look through the flowers to the sky.
Even with bloody feet.