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Cooking a Pork Tenderloin with a Pomegranate Glaze
Pork Tenderloin with Pomegranate Seeds
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How I discovered the Pomegranate and Pork recipe
I discovered this delectable recipe in an old edition of Clean Eating magazine, (January 2011). While thumbing through it I saw a photo of a pork tenderloin that had pomegranate seeds sprinkled over it. I am aware that this is the season for pomegranates and have seen them in the produce department lately. In the Northern Hemisphere the season for pomegranates usually lasts between September through February. The season for this fruit in the Southern Hemisphere is from March through May.
I have to rate the Spiced Pork Tenderloin a 5 star recipe. Simple enough to prepare for the family-elegant enough to serve for a dinner party.
Preparations for the pork recipeClick thumbnail to view full-size
What is a pomegranate?
The pomegranate is a fruit about the size of a grapefruit. The seeds and juice have a rich, deep red color. You could say it is blood red. I have been fascinated with the pomegranate and its tiny seeds that hide in the interior, since my dad first brought one home to show us. He was always introducing us to new things, including different foods, and I recall my siblings and me gathering around the kitchen table and peering into the halved fruit.
Dad encouraged us to put the tiny red seeds in our mouths to taste them. They are nestled in layers of pulp within the hard rind. At age nine I didn't really care for their tart taste...and, certainly never appreciated their health benefits, nor their usefulness in recipes.
Health benefits of the pomegranate
Pomegranates have a tart flavored juice. They are:
1. High in antioxidants
2. A rich source of Vitamin C.
3. High in potassium
4. A good source of fiber if eating the whole seed.
More facts about the pomegranate
Pomegranates originated from the Middle East and through the trade routes ended up in India and finally to North America.
There are between 200-1400 seeds in each pomegranate.
In the United States, pomegranates are grown in California.
Grenadine, a sweet syrup that is added to many cocktails, such as the Sea Breeze, was once made with pomegranate juice. Now, it is mostly high fructose corn syrup, food coloring and other ingredients.
The word 'pomegranate' comes from two medieval Latin words: pomum for 'apple' and granatum for 'seeded'.
Photos of Ingredients for Pork and Pomegranate Recipe
- 1 - 2 (3/4 -1 # each) Pork tenderloin, will make at least 12 slices per loin
- 1 cup 100% Pomegranate juice, If unavailable: use a blend
- 1 Pomegranate (optional), Use seeds for garnish
- 2 Tablespoon Olive Oil
- 2 teaspoon Balsalmic Vinegar
- 3/4 teaspoon arrowroot, If unavailable: substitute flour
- 1/2 teaspoon coriander
- 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon cumin
- 1/2 teaspoon (+ additional to taste) sea salt, Use Kosher salt as a substitute
Photos of Spice rubClick thumbnail to view full-size
What to do when the pork has cookedClick thumbnail to view full-size
How to prepare Spiced Pork Tenderloin with Pomegranate Glaze
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- In a shallow bowl, (I used a separate casserole dish to hold the spices in one corner as the tenderloin was turned), stir together the dry ingredients: coriander, cinnamon, cumin, paprika, and salt.
- Pat the tenderloins dry and rub the spice mixture evenly over each of them. The easiest method I used was to first divide the spice in half; sprinkle the meat in an area and then rub across the meat. I continued this method, turning the meat, until all areas were covered.
- In a large, heavy bottomed skillet heat the oil over medium-high until hot but NOT smoking. Reduce heat and sear pork until meat is browned on all sides. Transfer pork to a baking dish and place in oven to cook for about 20 minutes or until a meat thermometer inserted diagonally into the center of each tenderloin registers 145 degrees F. (I had to cook mine for 30 minutes).
- Remove from oven and transfer pork to a cutting board, tent wiht aluminum foil and let rest for 10 minutes before slicing.
- While meat rests pour off and discard any fat from the skillet. Add pomegranate juice to skillet and boil over medium-high heat for 2-3 minutes or until juice is reduced to about 2/3 C. Note: I could not find 100% pomegranate juice, so I used an Ocean Spray brand of pomegranate/cranberry juice which worked fine.
- In a small bowl, whisk together arrowroot and 1 T reduced pomegranate juice. Whisk mixture back into skillet, then boil sauce until thickened slightly, about 1-2 minutes. Remove from heat and add vinegar. Season with salt. Note: I could not find arrowroot and researched a substitute. Between corn starch and flour it was recommended to substitute FLOUR for arrowroot in this recipe.
- Slice pork on the diagonal and drizzle with pomegranate glaze. Garnish with pomegranate seeds, if desired. Note: I did not cut the pork on the diagonal and it presented very well without that added touch.
Photo of Leftover Pork Tenderloin
Leftover pork tenderloin
Pork is considered, 'the other white meat', and tenderloin is the most flavorful cut that I've had. I bought this package for a mere $10 and it served our family generously, three times.
Besides the initial meal of Pork Tenderloin with Pomegranate Glaze, you can serve it in these ways:
1. For hot or cold sandwiches. If hot-add a pork gravy for a different flavor.
2. As a leftover with the pomegranate glaze-by adding the sliced pork to the glaze in the pan you can let it warm gradually in the sauce. If you've run out of the glaze, make a fresh batch-it is easy to do and ready in about 5 minutes.
3. With BBQ sauce on a hamburger bun as BBQ'd pork sandwiches. I wouldn't recommend this, unless you have a die-hard lover of BBQ sauce. This meat is so tender and juicy it is a shame to cover up the flavor with BBQ sauce.
Pork Tenderloin with Pomegranate Glaze
|Serving size: 6|
|Calories from Fat||63|
|% Daily Value *|
|Fat 7 g||11%|
|Saturated fat 1 g||5%|
|Unsaturated fat 6 g|
|Carbohydrates 7 g||2%|
|Sugar 6 g|
|Fiber 0 g|
|Protein 30 g||60%|
|Cholesterol 92 mg||31%|
|* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.|