Mushroom-Stuffed Pork Tenderloin

I have shared a recipe for pork tenderloin before, but I really like this cut so I decided to up my game a little and stuff it with caramelized mushrooms and onions. After all that butterflying and spreading eagle and stuffing and tying with string, it started to feel a little 50-shades-of-grey…for the pork I mean. Get your mind out of the gutter! Anyway, the end result was super tasty, and of course, made great left overs.

Mushroom Stuffed Tenderloin

Mushroom-Stuffed Pork Tenderloin

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 pound package of pork tenderloin
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil or Grapeseed Oil (*Don’t be cheap alert)
  • 1 cup mushrooms, chopped
  • 1 large, yellow onion, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp dry oregano
  • 1/2 tsp dry rosemary
  • Salt and pepper

Prep

For the filling…

  • Heat 1 tbsp of olive oil in a medium pan. Add the chopped onion and sauté until translucent.
  • Add the mushrooms and sauté for about 3 minutes.
  • Remove from heat and stir in seasonings. Set aside.

Now,

  • Pre-heat the oven to 400 Degrees.
  • Trim any silver skin and excess fat from roast, wash it off thoroughly, and pat dry with a paper towel.
  • Rub the roast all over with the oil and place in a roasting pan.
  • Sprinkle the roast with salt and then freshly ground black pepper.
    Make sure you roll the roast around so it gets coated everywhere with the seasoning.
  • Butterfly the tenderloin by cutting it straight down the center to about 3/4 of the roast’s depth. Spread open and spoon the mushroom sauté into the middle.
  • Using butcher string, close the roast up and wrap the string around in about 1 inch intervals. Tie it off. This part is messy; don’t over think it. Just close the roast up and secure as best you can.
  • Roast in the oven for about 30 minutes. Now is a good time to make stuffing or whatever sides you’ll be serving is this is a fancy, Sunday dinner.
  • After the timer goes off, grab your digital thermometer and check the temp in the thickest part of the roast. If it’s between 158 and 160 degrees, pull the roast out and cover it with foil. Let it rest for at least 10 minutes before slicing.

If you want gravy….

  • Grab a baster and suck out the drippings. Add a 1/4 cup of the drippings into a small sauce pot and turn the flame on low. Stir 1/4 cup of flour into a measuring cup filled with 2 cups of COLD water and mix well.
  • Now comes the tricky part. While stirring the drippings constantly, slowly add the flour/water mixture to the drippings. Keep stirring! Keep stirring and stirring until you start to see the gravy get thick and smooth. If it’s thin, don’t stress. The cold air will thicken it when you are done cooking.
  • Taste it. If it’s bland, add in more drippings a 1/4 cup at a time until you reach gravy nirvana. You can add in salt and pepper to season. You can add in a splash of white wine or sherry if its handy, or a dash of cayenne if you want a little zippy-do-dah thing happenin’.

It was funny because the high heat scalded my drippings as the roast cooked so I was freaking out about my gravy. I wanted to serve it sliced over french bread, open-faced sandwich style with stuffing on the side. I spent so much time making the roast that I ran out of energy and patience to make stuffing and now I would have no gravy?? I ended up doing some weird gravy hack using cream of chicken soup, just to have something to soak the bread. It turns out, we didn’t need gravy at all. The mushroom mixture was so delicious and savory and the roast turned out so perfectly tender, it didn’t need a date to this disco. Live and learn.

~Nom On

Roast Pork Tenderloin

I really like tenderloin. It’s easy to cook without baby sitting, is completely delicious, lean, utterly versatile, and the left overs make for some tasty ass lunches and weeknight meals. I will share the basic recipe to cook the tenderloin and a few yummy things I have made with it in the past (like these delish mini-sandwiches pictured below.)

Pork Tenderloin Sandwiches

Basic Roast Pork Tenderloin

I had a really hard time finding a basic roast method online for pork tenderloin, so I wanted to share mine. There are SO MANY ways to make tenderloin that range from pan searing and transferring to the oven, slow cooker, fussy spice rubs, glazes, overnight marinades, and full one-pan meals where the roast and veggies had to be basted regularly. It was really starting to piss me off. I knew the method existed, why couldn’t I find it again?? After about an hour and many, many search strings, I finally got something that gave me a base approach I could build out, fuss-free. You’re welcome.

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 pound package of pork tenderloin
  • 1 large, yellow onion
  • Whole white mushrooms
  • A few cloves of garlic
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil or Grapeseed Oil (*Don’t be cheap alert)
  • Salt and pepper

Prep

  • Pre-heat the oven to 400 Degrees.
  • Trim any silver skin and excess fat from roast, wash it off thoroughly, and pat dry with a paper towel.
  • Rub the roast all over with the oil and place in a roasting pan.
  • Sprinkle the roast with salt and then freshly ground black pepper.
    Make sure you roll the roast around so it gets coated everywhere with the seasoning. This makes a big difference in the quality of your drippings should you want to make gravy. You can definitely add other spices to your rub if you want – dried parsley, rosemary, sage, and thyme are popular additions.
  • Cut your yellow onion up in quarters or large, rough slices. If you slice, be sure to halve the slices. I like slices personally, they caramelize nicely and taste great with each bite of roast. Yummy in sandwiches, too.
  • Next, toss your mushrooms, garlic cloves, and onion in olive oil. Spread them in the pan around the roast and then season liberally with salt and fresh, black pepper.
  • Pop that bad boy in the oven for about 40 minutes. If you drank too much wine during prep, now is a great time to pass out on the carpet in front of the TV machine for a sober-up snooze.
  • After the timer goes off and wakes you up, grab your digital thermometer and check the temp in the thickest part of the roast. If it’s between 158 and 160 degrees, pull the roast out and let it rest for at least 10 minutes.

If you want gravy….

  • Grab a baster and suck out the drippings. Add a 1/4 cup of the drippings into a small sauce pot and turn the flame on low. Stir 1/4 cup of flour into a measuring cup filled with 2 cups of COLD water and mix well.
  • Now comes the tricky part. While stirring the drippings constantly, slowly add the flour/water mixture to the drippings. Keep stirring! Keep stirring and stirring until you start to see the gravy get thick and smooth. If it’s thin, don’t stress. The cold air will thicken it when you are done cooking.
  • Taste it. If it’s bland, add in more drippings a 1/4 cup at a time until you reach gravy nirvana. You can add in salt and pepper to season. You can add in a splash of white wine or sherry if its handy, or a dash of cayenne if you want a little zippy-do-dah thing happenin’. This part is up to you. It’s your nirvana.

Finally, we eat! 

Slice the roast and serve it with a scoop of the caramelized veggies and gravy, if you made it. If you didn’t, flights of sweet-hot mustard, a tart berry jam, and mint jelly is always fun. Hell, eat it plain. Your side is totally wide open. Couscous or quinoa, mashed potatoes, steamed veggies, egg noodles, stuffing. Enjoy!

When to get freaky…

As I said earlier, this roast can be a really elaborate dish cooked with creative glazes that range from sweet to spicy to tart, it can be simple comfort food served with gravy, mashed pataters, and green beans, elegant stuffed with figs and stilton cheese and served over a bed of couscous with a flight of jams and mustards  for garnish, and it can be prepped in advance so you have plenty of food for the week. When to get crazy is totally your call and there are a zillion recipes out there to try.

 So much leftover….

Oh, this is the best part!! Run to the farmers market, if you have access to one, or hit the bakery section of the grocery store and get yourself a nice, crusty roll of baguette or country bread. Buy some crazy mustard or jam you have always been curious to try (Jalapeño jelly… really? When would I use that…?) You can get cream cheese, too. Just go for flavor, flavor, flavor! Farmer’s markets often have fun spreads and gourmet oils and vinaigrettes you can pick up. The sandwich that is pictured in the post has garlic-mint cheese spread and sweet jalapeño jelly I snagged from an Afghan merchant with a few of the caramelized onions. Oh. My. God.

You can also lightly sear it in a pan with a little oil and pop it in a stew or soup. The broth will tenderize the chunks of meat as the soup cooks. Or, shred it, stuff into a grilled corn tortilla, and add mango-habanero salsa and a sprinkle or onion and cilantro for crunch. So many parties in your mouth, so little time.

~Nom On