Grilled Pork Tenderloin with Cauliflower Purée and Savory Cherry Compote

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Grilled Pork Tenderloin with Cauliflower Purée and Savory Cherry Compote

I am sick in bed for the second day (which is always such a bummer when it is glorious outside, isn’t it?) and I figured I might as well get to it and post last weeks recipe (apologies for the delay).  So here I am, lying in bed, and my mind is still wandering off to last weeks meal…. there is something about fruit paired with savory entrees that I just love. I’m always playing with fruit salsas and put them on anything from grilled steaks to fish tacos, and I make a great raspberry and pomegranate sauce to go with fish (yes I will share the recipe once I make it again, it is actually very similar to this one in many ways).  This dinner is so rich and savory you would swear its bad for you, but really, its surprisingly not. There is very little butter and cream in the cauliflower puree, though you would swear it had a pound of butter in it, and pork tenderloin is a great source of protein, low in fat, and has a good amount of B vitamins. We had a simply toasted and sliced whole-wheat baguette on the side and it rounded everything out nicely. So when you’re looking for something that tastes decadent and savory with a little surprise of sweet, but don’t want to undo an entire week of eating salads, this would be my go to.

Pork Tenderloin
1 to 1 ½ pound pork tenderloin
1 tablespoon chopped rosemary
2 cloves crushed garlic
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
½ cup red wine
micro greens (for garnish)
salt and pepper

Savory Cherry Compote
1 tablespoon butter
½ cup chopped sweet onion (I used a Maui onion, Vidalia would be good too)
1 cup red cherries, pitted and halved (I used fresh red cherries)
1 sprig rosemary
3 leaves fresh pineapple sage (optional, I just happen to have this growing in my garden)
1 cup red wine
½ cup beef stock
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon honey
salt and pepper

Cauliflower Purée
1 head cauliflower, broken into florets
1½ cups chicken stock
2 cloves crushed garlic
2 tablespoons heavy cream
2 tablespoons butter
salt and pepper

Grilled Pork Tenderloin
In a zip top bag add the rosemary, garlic, vinegar, red wine, and tenderloin. Now, I didn’t have a whole lot of time to marinate so this sat for about 20-30 minutes. If you wanted to marinate for a few hours or overnight I recommend cutting the vinegar to 1 tablespoon, as any more would break down the meat too much. When you’re ready to cook, preheat your grill for 15 minutes. Bring your tenderloin to room temperature and remove from the marinade, then liberally salt and pepper all sides of the meat. Place the burners to medium heat and put your tenderloin right in the middle of the grill and close the top. Cook for 5 minutes on each side (about 20 minutes total…. it is a circle after all) remove and wrap up in foil for 10 minutes to let it rest. Once ready, slice into 1 to 1 ½ inch slices, depending on preference. Also, I like to pour the juices that collect in the foil straight into my cherry compote, but that’s up to you.

now that's a happily  marinading pork tenderloin

that’s a happily marinading pork tenderloin

Now, I feel a lot of people who started their culinary journey as of late are ok with certain cuts of pork (i.e. pork tenderloin) still being the slightest bit pink on the inside, I am one of them. Some people, on the other hand, prefer to never see or eat anything remotely close to pink in their pork. I get it. I don’t want to get in a lengthy discussion or “advise” you to eat undercooked pork per FDA standards. So, if you need to cook it longer, please, for the love of god, do so. And I am in no way saying to eat your pork raw or rare (although it is considered a delicacy in some countries) I am saying a tinge of pink in the center, for me, is ok. My dad for instance, would disagree, but my mother, for instance, has come around. Ok, I think my mini rant is over. I hope I don’t need a disclaimer here…

Savory Cherry Compote
In a medium saucepan melt the tablespoon of butter and sauté your onion over a medium heat for about 5 minutes. You want the onion really soft and golden, but not scorched. If you have the time to really take it low and slow go for it, it will be well worth it. Add the cherries and sauté for another 5 minutes until the cherries are also nice and soft, make sure to add some salt and pepper as well. Add the rest of the ingredients and bring up to a boil, then simmer on low for about 20 minutes. You want everything to become thick and almost syrupy. You could boil this and maybe it would only take 10 minutes to reduce, but I really wanted to be somewhat gentle with the sauce and let all of the flavors really develop. Do what you have to.

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Cauliflower Purée
In a small pot add the cauliflower, garlic, stock, and some salt and pepper. Bring to a boil then place the lid on and simmer for about 10-15 minutes. The cauliflower should be incredibly tender. Place everything in a blender or food processor (an immersion blender would be perfect if you have one) along with the cream and butter. Pulse until everything is very smooth and creamy. Taste for seasoning and adjust as needed.

Grilled Pork Tenderloin with Cauliflower Purée and Savory Cherry Compote
To put all together lay out a nice spoonful of the purée and fan some of the sliced pork tenderloin on top. Place a nice spoonful of the cherry compote over the pork and finish it with some micro greens. Enjoy.

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in my element

in my element

Regarding the garnish: At the market I had wanted to buy micro basil but the pea shoots were there, just staring at me. I felt I HAD to buy them and use them instead. However, they proved to have just too much of a bite for this dish, so I really do recommend the micro greens (I think basil micro greens are fantastic and trader joes regularly carries them). So yes, those are pea shoots in the photo but in the ingredient list I suggest something different. There you go. 

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23 comments

  1. Sounds delicious. Beautiful plating, too. I bet it would be good with some butter-wilted sunflower sprouts in the role of “micro greens.” (Those are my current fave micro-accent.)

    1. I will have to find some sunflower sprouts, that sounds wonderful! I definitely need to up my micro repertoire and experiment a bit more with whats out there.

      1. Microgreens are fun, aren’t they? I love composing tiny salads next to (or on top of) whatever my main course is. Another of my favorites is curly cress, which is delicious and soooo delicate and beautiful. It can be hard to find, tho — I get it at the Weds. farmer’s market in Santa Monica. Sorry to hear you’re sick BTW. Garlic + ginger.

      2. Micro greens really are the best, so much fun to play with and seriously add such a nice touch to most dishes. I’ll keep my eye out for curly cress at the farmers market! And thank you, I’ve been doing the lemon, honey, mint all morning…..I might give the garlic and ginger a go.

      3. Nothing worse than sick in summery weather. It’s so much more fun (if it can ever be called “fun”) when it’s cold and cloudy out, and you can bundle up in bed w/out feeling like life is passing you by. 😉

  2. I’ll have some savory cherry compote. And a spoon, please. What a lovely dish.

    1. Why thank you 🙂

  3. Wow, this looks so amazing!! The title lured me in and the pictures got me drooling. I don’t cook pork often but this is definitely something I would like to try 🙂

    1. Thanks for stopping by! If you ever give it a try let me know how it turns out! If your into duck I’m sure it would be great with that as well.

      1. Oh definitely! Thanks!

  4. Julie Ann · · Reply

    Wonderful! I added a bit more honey to the compote, only because when I first tasted it I was afraid it would be too bitter. I was wrong-that compote should be put on a bed of bacon vanilla ice cream, topped with a piece of foie gras. The cauliflower was great; I’ve made, and forgot, pureed cauliflower before. Your way was awesome. The pork was perfect. My only complaint would be the fact that so much red wine was used in the recipes, I had to open another bottle for hubby and I to share. I will definitely be trying out more of your recipes. Good job! Love you:)

    1. Thanks mom! So glad you liked it…love you too!!!!

  5. Hillary O'Kelly · · Reply

    Hi Jacquie!! Tim and I are new followers, and most likely Taylor & Lindsay (taking after there father not me!!) will be joining as well. Your recipes sound wonderful and I’m looking forward to Tim cooking them ; )
    I knew someone in the Greynald clan would be a fantastic cook, as both your mom AND dad have put on many a delicious feast!
    Kisses to you and Aiden Xxxooo

    1. Thanks Hillary! So glad you stopped by and even happier that you are enjoying what you see so far! It would be hard to not love food and cooking with two incredible culinary role models 🙂 Sending lots of love and kisses back to you and yours!!!!!!!

  6. […] Grilled Pork Tenderloin with Cauliflower Purée and Savory Cherry Compote (coffeetablecookbook.wordpress.com) […]

  7. […] Grilled Pork Tenderloin with Cauliflower Purée and Savory Cherry Compote (coffeetablecookbook.wordpress.com) […]

  8. […] think again my friend! Cherries pair beautifully with my oh-so-smooth chicken liver pate and this Pork fillet with cauliflower puree and cherry compote should send you right over the edge, no […]

  9. I got some Flathead Cherries up here in Montana this morning, going to whip this dish up tonight with them.

    1. Sounds wonderful, I love Montana! I bet it’s stunning this time of year (if not all year) 🙂

  10. I meant to add a question, any recommendation on what wine to use?

    1. Hi Brian! Sorry it took so long for me to reply! I usually go with whatever I have lying around, most typically a pinot noir or cabernet…..if memory serves me right I think I used a blend for this recipe. Let me know how the dish turned out and what wine you used! Thanks for stopping by!!

  11. […] Grilled Pork Tenderloin with Cauliflower Purée and Savory Cherry Compote […]

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