Beer-Braised Pork Tenderloin with Cabbage and Apples
When we think of pork tenderloin, we generally think of roasting or grilling, but this quick-cooking cut of pork can be braised to tender, juicy perfection in less than 30 minutes. This one-pan recipe uses a small amount of a quality lager (see notes) combined with brown sugar and Dijon mustard to infuse the pork with unique flavor as it braises with a blend of sautéed cabbage, apples and bacon.
- 2 pork tenderloins (about 2 lbs)
- 3/4 lb bacon, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 1 medium head cabbage (about 1-1/2 lbs), thinly sliced
- 1 cup onion, chopped
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 2 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and cut into cubes
- 1 cup lager
- 1 tablespoon Dijon-style mustard
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
Fry the bacon until lightly browned in a large pan over medium-high heat. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate and drain the excess fat from the pan, leaving about 1 tablespoon. Add the pork tenderloins and sear them on all sides, about 3 minutes total. Transfer to a plate and set aside.
Return the pan to the stove over medium heat and add the butter. Add the onion and cook until soft and translucent, about 2 minutes. Add the cabbage and continue cooking until wilted, 3 to 4 minutes.
Season to taste with salt and pepper, add the bacon, combine well and continue to cook, stirring often, until the cabbage begins to caramelize, 4 to 5 minutes longer. Add the apples and combine well.
In a small bowl combine the beer, Dijon-style mustard and and brown sugar.
Return the pork to the pan, nestling the tenderloins into the cabbage and apples. Pour the beer mixture over the tenderloins, reduce the heat to medium, cover and braise for 12 to 15 minutes, turning the pork with tongs every 4 to 5 minutes.
Remove the tenderloins to a cutting board and allow them to rest for 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer the cabbage mixture to a serving platter and set aside.
Slice the pork into 1/2-inch thick slices and set atop the bed of cabbage. Garnish with a sprinkling of fresh thyme if desired.
Makes 4 servings
Mashed potatoes and oven-roasted fresh carrots accompany this dish quite nicely.