I’ve got admit: I’m a little afraid of meat. I don’t think I’ve ever gone to the meat counter at the grocery, and I’ve never cooked a whole chicken or turkey or anything like that. I pretty much stick to chicken breasts, ground beef, pork chops, and an occasional roast or steak (though Steven usually deals with the steaks since he likes to grill). I don’t like touching raw meat, and I don’t like the residue of blood in the packages.
then surely I can try (or “greet”) a new kind or form of meat once in a while! So tonight was the first time I’ve ever cooked pork tenderloin. I think pork tenderloin looks disgusting in the package, and when it’s thawed, it’s all squishy and gross. I was determined to try it, though.
Cutting up pork tenderloin into 1-inch cubes was a bit of a challenge as I was trying to cut off the fat, too. Then I realized I didn’t have chili powder, but I adlibbed and my husband (and I) loved it!
Pork Tenderloin with Pasta in Tomato & Red Pepper Sauce
(from Fix-It and Enjoy It cookbook)
1 Tbsp butter
1 Tbsp vegetable oil
2 cups sliced mushrooms
2 onions, chopped
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
1 tsp dried oregano
1 lb. pork tenderloin cut into 1 inch cubes
2 Tbsp flour
1 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
3 cups milk
9 oz dry penne pasta
14 oz can tomato sauce
Melt butter in large skilled, then add oil, mushrooms, onion, garlic, red pepper, and oregano. Cook over medium heat until onion is soft. Place flour, chili powder, salt, and pepper in a plastic bag – add pork pieces and shake to coat. Add pork and any remaining flour mixture to skillet. Cook, stirring occasionally, until pork is brown on both sides. Add milk, pasta, and tomato sauce. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Reduce heat, cover and simmer until pasta is tender.
** I don’t like mushrooms, so I left them out, and I only used 1 onion. I also used minced garlic. Since I didn’t have chili powder, I used cayenne pepper and cumin, and it was pretty spicy! I also doubled the flour mixture. Yum!
Fun Facts about Pork Tenderloin:
– It is the most healthy type of pork to eat. Little fat and more protein than chicken!
– A pigs “loin” refers to meat between the shoulder and the leg, above the side ribs and belly. (Which I’m glad of because I was thinking of the traditional meaning of loin and was a little grossed out.)