This roasted pork tenderloin recipe exudes fall flare and warmth: a hint of apple fruit, a woodsy rosemary aroma, and a bare-bones, robust pan-sauce gravy. It’s foolproof to master and takes just minutes of hands-on cook time. Serve with a side of smashed root vegetables, sautéed greens, and a tall mug of warm cider for the ultimate seasonal dinner.
Much of today’s meat is still raised in large industrial animal farm systems referred to as concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs). There has been concern that these large industrial systems are not only an inhumane way to raise meat, but they may also pose a number of environmental risks, potentially polluting our groundwater, lakes, rivers, and air quality, and ultimately contributing to climate change.
For a more sustainably-raised option for pork, look for “certified” meat from a trusted grocer or local farmers market. There are a number of different seals of certification offered by third-party organizations that are made to tell the consumer what standards were used to raise the meat you’re buying. (For a glimpse into a sampling of certification programs in the US for sustainable foods, check out this page from the USDA.)
Apple Cider and Rosemary Roasted Pork Tenderloin Recipe
Makes about 6 servings.
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 (2-pound) pork loin, trimmed
Chili powder and dried rosemary, to taste
Sea salt and black pepper, to taste
4 large cloves garlic, peeled, crushed
1 apple of choice, sliced
½ cup apple cider
2 tablespoons butter
Preheat oven to 400 F.
Heat olive oil over medium-high in a large oven-safe skillet. Season pork on both sides with chili powder, rosemary, salt, and pepper. Add to hot oil and brown on both sides, turning once, until a thin golden crust is formed, about 3 to 4 minutes per side.
Add garlic to skillet; shake and cook until garlic is fragrant and just golden, about 30 seconds. Add apples to cover skillet and pork; pour cider into skillet.
Cover skillet and place on middle rack in oven. Cook until a thermometer inserted into the deepest part of the pork reads 150F, about 30-45 minutes, checking temperature after 30 minutes.
Remove pork from oven and tent with foil (or partially covered with lid); let stand 10 minutes. Remove pork with a slotted spatula to a cutting board, reserving the cooking liquid in the skillet, and slice into thin medallions. Arrange on a serving tray and top with apples; set aside.
Place skillet with reserved cooking liquid over medium-high heat; bring to a simmer. Add butter and cook, stirring occasionally, until a thick gravy has formed, about 2 to 4 minutes.
Pour gravy over pork and serve.
To read more about CAFOs and their potential risks in this paper published by the National Association of Local Boards of Health hosted on CDC.gov.
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