Balsamic Pork Tenderloin & Vegetables with Harvest Grains & Cranberries
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Serves: at least 6 servings
 
A tender harvest meal of healthy & flavorful balsamic marinated pork tenderloin, roasted balsamic vegetables, all on a bed of wholesome harvest grains. We sweeten the occasion by topping it all with a slightly-sweet fresh cranberry-cabernet compote. Fall dinners are good!
What to get:
For the Marinated Pork Tenderloin:
  • 1.5-2 lb lean pork tenderloin (my package came with two, smaller cuts), slice into ~1.5" medallions
  • ¼ cup Basil EVOO (WeOlive)
  • ¼ cup Blackberry Balsamic (WeOlive)
  • ¼ cup white wine
  • 1.5 tsp dried thyme
  • 2 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 T honey
  • 2 dashes cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp kosher salt
  • 1 tsp coarse black pepper
  • 1 large garlic clove, minced or finely chopped
  • several fresh thyme sprigs
  • 2 T butter (for searing the pork loin slices on stove)
For the Roasted Vegetables:
  • 8 oz bag of mini zucchinis (sliced, about 1.5 cups worth)
  • 1 cup sliced yellow squash
  • 12 oz of fresh butternut squash cubed
  • ⅛ cup blackberry balsamic (WeOlive)
  • ⅛ cup regular balsamic
  • 1T EVOO (extra virgin olive oil)
  • ¼ tsp dried thyme
  • ⅛ cup white wine
For the Cranberry Cabernet Compote:
  • 12oz bag of fresh cranberries
  • ½ cup red wine (Cabernet)
  • 3 T red wine (Cabernet) added at end of cooking compote)
  • 2-3 T sugar
  • ½ cup water
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 fresh thyme sprigs
For the Harvest Grain Mix:
  • 1.25 cups harvest grain mix (mix dried Israeli couscous, orzo, baby garbanzo, red quinoa)
  • 1.75 cups chicken broth
  • 1T butter
  • Salt & Pepper
What to do:
Make Pork Tenderloin Marinade:
  1. In large bowl combine all pork loin marinade ingredients above (minus butter), into a large mixing bowl, whisk well.
  2. Slice pork loin into medallions about 1-2 inches thick.
  3. Add pork slices to marinade, coating well & cover with plastic wrap.
  4. Let pork marinate for about 45 minutes (can return to fridge, but remove 20 min before cooking).
Make Cranberry Compote:
  1. While pork loin marinates, rinse package of fresh cranberries in a colander.
  2. In medium pot on stove add ½ cup water, ½ cup cabernet, cranberries, sugar, salt and sprigs of fresh thyme, and simmer on very low till cranberries start to crack, thicken, stirring often & avoiding bringing to a boil (~10 min).
  3. When most of cranberries have split, but texture is still chunky, taste sauce for sweetness and add more sugar as needed (this should not be too sweet).
  4. Add additional 3 T red wine into cranberries, discard fresh thyme sprigs & remove from heat, set aside.
Prep & Roast Veggies:
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. In small pot of boiling water, blanch the cubed, fresh butternut squash till only slightly tender when tested with a fork (few minutes), rinse with cool water, drain and set aside.
  3. In a medium bowl combine all ingredients for vegetable marinade above, add sliced zucchini, yellow squash and the cubed & blanched butternut squash, tossing well to coat.
  4. In small roasting dish or pan with raised edge, sprayed with oil, lay out veggie mix including all remaining sauce.
  5. Roast veggies till tender (10-20 min).
  6. Once tender with a fork, remove from oven and cover with foil, set aside.
Cook Pork Loin & Grains:
  1. Reduce oven temp to 300 degrees.
  2. In medium pot on stove cook grains according to package directions: heat broth and butter bringing to boil, add harvest grains & simmer on medium low till mix returns to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer, cover pot with lid & cook additional 10 min till tender.
  3. When done, remove from heat, cover to keep warm.
  4. Preheat large, oven-safe skillet on stove & melt 1T of butter.
  5. Add pork medallions spaced evenly, with all remaining marinade juices.
  6. Sear on medium-high on first side for a minute.
  7. Flip all pork medallions, searing on second side for another minute.
  8. Transfer entire pan into 300 degree oven and bake till center slices are only barely pink, but avoiding over cooking, these cook fairly quickly (depending on thickness 10-15 minutes, test one with knife to check center for doneness).
  9. Remove from oven & let medallions sit a couple of minutes to retain juices, remove any remaining fresh thyme sprigs.
  10. Return pan of roasted veggies to 300 degree oven if they need to warm up, also return pot of grains to stove on low as needed.
Serve & Enjoy:
  1. Plate warm harvest grains mix, with roasted veggies on top, followed by pork loin medallions, adding some of the remaining pork sauce from pan on top.
  2. Top pork with cranberry-cabernet compote and a fresh thyme sprig!
Notes:
This is healthy and delicious and our flavors are focused in the blackberry and fresh basil marinate for the pork and balsamic marinade for the veggies. We make a separate marinade for the veggies, even though it is similar, since we don't want to cross contaminate with any raw pork juices.
The slightly sweet and tangy cranberry compote with Cabernet, os the perfect companion to baked pork loin!
Recipe by the dinnervine at http://www.dinnervine.com/2012/11/harvest-pork-tenderloin/