Friday, October 04, 2013

Pretzel-Crusted Pork Tenderloin

A few weeks ago I went out to dinner at a local restaurant/winery, and I ordered a pretzel-crusted pork medallion.  I was surprised by how much I enjoyed the entree, and whenever that happens it almost always translates into an attempt at recreating the entree in my own kitchen.  Earlier this week my kids helped me in the kitchen, and we decided to give it a try.  I enjoyed creating this recipe because there were many opportunities for them to get involved.  Gabe was responsible for the crust and mashed potatoes while Grace was given the asparagus and honey-Dijon glaze.
The finished meal was a hit with everyone, and the kids had many things to discuss during dinner.  They critiqued the dish, and we talked about what we might change the next time we make this dinner.  We originally tied the medallions with kitchen twine, but we felt it was unnecessary.  So here is our edited recipe for Pretzel-Crusted Pork Medallions.

Pretzel-Crusted Pork Tenderloin

1 (1-2 pound) pork tenderloin, room temperature

1 tablespoon butter, melted
2 tablespoons Dijon Mustard
3 tablespoons maple syrup

Whisk together in a small bowl.

1 large soft pretzel (we used a homemade version, recipe coming soon)
1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, finely minced
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
2 tablespoons maple syrup
2 tablespoons butter

Place soft pretzel in the bowl of a food processor.  Pulse until pretzel resembles coarse breadcrumbs.  Remove and place in a medium bowl.  Add remaining ingredients and mix thoroughly.

Preheat oven to 400°F.  Line a baking sheet with foil and then place a rack on top.  (A small cooling rack works well.  Spraying it with nonstick spray will help during cleanup.)  Slice the pork tenderloin into 3 ounce medallions.  Place on rack and brush all sides with prepared glaze.  Place in heated oven for 7 minutes.  Remove and add crust mixture to the top of each medallion.  Return to oven for 12-18 minutes or until a meat thermometer reads 145°F.  I often give the medallions a squeeze, if they feel firm to the touch they are ready.  Remove and let rest 10 minutes before serving.

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