From Guest Blogger: Ann Araps Sitler- HNG Meats General Manager
Rolled Up Pork Tenderloin
I love my grill and am easily pleased by a simple salt and peppered 100% grassfed burger any day, but sometimes I feel the need to mix it up. Pork tenderloin is a favorite cut of mine… small enough for 2-4 people, delightfully tender, and fairly uniform in shape. The shape is what makes it fun to cook and present. It is surprisingly simple to filet it open, line it with seasonal goodies, and roll it up. The result is a beautiful spiral of meat, cheese, and anything else you please.
Rolled Pork Tenderloin
- 1 – 1 lb pork tenderloin
- 1/3 cup chopped greens (spinach, watercress, kale, anything fresh)
- ¼ cup chopped onion
- 4 cloves garlic chopped
- 1/3 cup chopped or shredded cheese (Looking Glass Drovers Rd is a favorite)
- 1 T. olive oil
- Salt and pepper
Directions: Butterfly the pork tenderloin, leaving some space on either end to tuck (make a ½ inch deep cut 2” from the top of the pork tenderloin along one side down to 2” from the bottom or to the point where is starts to thin. Pull the tenderloin apart and continue to cut along the side until the whole thing laid out is ½” thick). Rub the outside with olive oil and salt and pepper. Pan sear or grill for 30 seconds/side on medium high heat. Remove from heat and set aside. Mix your greens, onions, garlic, and cheese. Add a dash of salt and pepper. Spread the mixture over the opened pork leaving 1” around the edge. Roll lengthwise, tuck in the ends, and tie with butchers twine. Grill for 20 minutes on low heat or bake at 375 for 20 minutes. Let it sit at least 5 minutes before slicing.
Play with all different types of fillings for your pork tenderloin. Some suggestions are apples and goat cheese in the fall, shredded beets and sweet potato in the winter, or garlic scapes and brie in the spring.
We all got a lot of tongue at the last crew dinner…beef tongue, that is. Ann, queen of the crockpot, whipped up some amazing tongue tacos for us all last week and, even though it looked like she’d crammed some strange alien into her slow cooker, it tasted delicious.
I had never had the pleasure of eating tongue before, nor of seeing it prepared, and I’m not sure which one was more exciting. After nearly 12 hours on low heat, the tongue looked, well, a lot like a human tongue except that it was white and weighed about three pounds. Ann peeled the rough outer coating off to reveal a very tender dark meat underneath. (I tried a little bit of the coating just for fun. It wasn’t fun. It made me think of chewing on a slice of a bouncy ball.) Ann cooked the whole tongue in beef broth with onion and garlic so that it would soak up some flavor, but you can also boil it in water for a few hours then strip it and continue cooking the inside part with any kind of spice that you want. The consistency of the tongue reminded me of those giant slabs of meat they have in gyro places that are continuously spinning on an upright spit. It didn’t just fall apart, but it had an almost bread-like quality and was quite flavorful. I was surprised that one tongue provided sufficient meat for five people. It’s one of the least expensive beef items available, yet very few people take the time or effort to learn how to prepare it. Getting over the initial repulsion may take a while, but it’s really no different from cooking any of the other cow muscle except that this one looks a bit strange while it’s in the pot.
Here’s an interesting recipe I found for BBQ beef tongue in the NY Times. I think we’ll have to try this one out next time.
One of the reasons I love getting a whole pasture raised chicken from the farm is because I get 3 meals out of one piece of meat! First, I roast the whole bird. Check out the Foodnetwork’s Perfect Roasted Chicken Recipe here: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ina-garten/perfect-roast-chicken-recipe/index.html. Second I pick the carcass clean and save those chicken scraps for sandwiches, quesadillas, salads, etc. Third I place the carcass in a large stock pot, cover it with water and cook it on low for 8-24+ hours. Voila, you have chicken stock! Use the stock in your cooking or add salt, pepper, carrots, onions, and celery while its simmering for a hearty broth!