Pork Tenderloin with Roasted Grape Sauce

On eatingwell.com I found these recipes for tender succulent pork tenderloin served with a sweet-tart grape sauce, crushed red potatoes and a simple sauteed spinach. Delicious!

Pork Tenderloin with Roasted Grape Sauce

2-4 cups red or green seedless grapes (4 cups in original recipe)
one 1 1/4 pound pork tenderloin trimmed of fat and silver
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup shallots, finely chopped
1/2 cup Madeira wine or white wine (I used rice cooking wine with a teaspoon of sugar)
1/2 cup reduced sodium chicken broth
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme or 1 teaspoon dried
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
2 teaspoons water, optional
1 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch, optional

Roast the grapes. Position racks in the middle and the lower part of the oven. Preheat oven 425˚F. Line a rimmed baking tray with foil and spread the grapes on top in a single layer. Roast the grapes on the lower rack 25-30 minutes. Shift the grapes in the pan occasionally.  Set aside. Do not turn off the oven, as I did.

Prepare to roast the pork. Rub the salt and pepper into the tenderloin. Heat the oil in a pan with an oven proof handle  (I used my grill pan) and sear the tenderloin on the stove top for 1-2 minutes. Put the pan in the oven for 12-14 minutes, turning the tenderloin once. Remove the tenderloin and put it on a cutting board to rest, tenting it with foil.

Make the sauce. On the stove top, heat a large skillet or use the same pan. I used a skillet because the grill pan was too shallow.  I added the shallots to cook in the juices until wilted, about a minute on medium high heat. Add Madeira or wine and cook down, 2-4 minutes, until it is reduced by half. Add broth, thyme, and mustard. Add the grapes. If desired, thicken the sauce with cornstarch mixed with water. To my mind, it didn’t need it and I was perfectly content with the sauce au jus.

According to the recipe, this makes 4 servings but 2 people can easily finish off one tenderloin. One is not very large. The meat was moist and juicy and went very well with the potatoes and spinach. As per the website, one serving (not terribly exact, I know) is supposed to be 299 calories, 6 g fat, 74 mg cholesterol, and 31 g carbohydrates.

Crushed Red Potatoes

6 small red potatoes, scrubbed and quartered, with the skin on
1/2 cup reduced-fat sour cream (the corner grocery only had full fat!)
1/4 cup shallots, minced
1/4 cup cilantro, minced
3 tablespoons low fat milk
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

Put the potatoes in a saucepan and cover with cold water to an inch above the level of the potatoes. Boil for 10-15 minutes or until fork tender. Drain and crush with a masher or the back of a large spoon.

In a small bowl combine the sour cream, shallots, cilantro, milk and olive oil. Add to the potatoes. Combine well. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Going with the 4 servings plan, 6 potatoes is perfect. The potatoes were cooked but still firm enough to chew rather than mashed and creamy.This works out to 122 calories per 1 cup serving and 20 g carbohydrates.

Simple Sautéed Spinach

2 bunches of spinach (one isn’t enough for four servings!)
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
4 cloves garlic, sliced
1 tablespoon lemon juice (I used lime juice)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper

Heat the oil in a skillet on high heat. Sauté garlic until fragrant. Add the spinach and toss to coat evenly in oil and garlic. Reduce the heat to medium high and cover the pan. Cook the spinach for 3-5 minutes or until tender. Turn off the heat. Add the lemon juice, salt, and the crushed red pepper. Mix well.

The spinach (can use other greens instead) was slightly sour and spicy, and complemented the saltiness of the potatoes and the sweet-tart flavor of the roasted grape sauce. This is 68 calories per half cup serving and 4 g of carbohydrates.

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