Pork Tenderloin & Portabella Mushrooms with Roasted Red Pepper Coulis.
My dad showed up at my house with this recipe in hand a couple of months ago. We made it for a family dinner and it was so fresh and good, I’d been thinking about making it again it ever since.
There are 3 distinct parts to the recipe – (#1) Grilled Pork Tenderloin, (#2) Grilled Portabella Mushrooms, and (#3) Roasted Red Pepper Coulis…which is just a fancy word for sauce.
One of the things I love about this dish is that while you can taste each element distinctly on its own, they all work well together to make an incredibly flavorful meal.
Sort of one of those “the sum is greater than the parts” situations.
This meal feels like fancy restaurant food to me but when you break it down, it is really quite simple and easy to prepare: grill the pork & mushrooms and make a tasty sauce.
Here’s what you need:
Pork Tenderloin, Portabella Mushroom Caps, Onion, Garlic, Red Wine, Roasted Red Peppers, Beef Broth, Olive Oil, Tomato Paste, Corn Starch, Sugar, Salt & Pepper. Arugula or other greens optional but highly recommended.
Start with a bit of chopping. Finely chop 1/2 of a large onion, about 1 cup and 5-6 big cloves of garlic. That’s a lot of garlic but it is going to serve double duty on the pork and in the sauce.
Place about 2/3 of the chopped garlic (or 4 cloves) in a small bowl and combine it with 3 Tablespoons of olive oil, and a pinch each of salt & pepper.
Save the rest of the garlic for the red pepper sauce.
Stir well to combine and then spread HALF of this onto 2 pounds of trimmed pork tenderloins.
Rub it onto the pork to cover all sides. Set aside to marinate at room temperature while you prepare the rest of the dish.
Take the remaining half of the garlic and oil mixture and add 2 Tablespoons of red wine. Whisk to combine.
Clean 4 large portabella mushroom caps by wiping them thoroughly with a damp paper towel.
I like to get my mushrooms clean, but if you rinse these, they can get pretty waterlogged, heavy, and soggy.
Cut the mushrooms into thick slices.
Place the mushrooms in a large ziplock bag and pour the wine marinade over them. Toss them gently to combine with the marinade and set aside.
As I mentioned earlier, coulis is a fancy term for a sauce usually made from pureed vegetables or fruits. In our case, roasted red peppers will do the job.
Drain 1 (12 oz.) jar of roasted red peppers and place the peppers in the bowl of a food processor or sturdy blender.
Process the peppers until very smooth. Add 2 Tablespoons of tomato paste and pulse to combine.
Heat 1 Tablespoon of olive oil in a medium sauce pan over medium high heat.
Add the cup of chopped onion and cook until tender but not browned, about 5 minutes.
Add the remaining chopped garlic and cook only 1-2 minutes being sure to stir so the garlic does not burn.
Add the blended red peppers and 1/2 cup of red wine to the pan.
Season with a pinch of sugar (about 1/2 teaspoon) and salt & pepper to taste.
Combine 1 cup of beef broth (I prefer to use the low sodium variety) with 1 Tablespoon cornstarch.
Whisk together until smooth and free from lumps and add it to the pan of red pepper sauce.
Turn the heat down to medium low and cook the sauce, uncovered for 20-25 minutes. Stir the sauce occasionally so it thickens but does not stick.
Preheat your grill to medium high heat.
If you don’t have a grill, you can always bake these in the oven or broiler. Click HERE for a good oven method for cooking pork.
I like to use a little olive oil or spray on the grill to be sure nothing sticks.
Grill the pork over medium heat about 20-25 minutes (depending on size and thickness) or until a meat thermometer registers 150 degrees.
Honestly, the best tool you can buy for cooking meat (and especially for grilling) is a good instant read thermometer. The powers that be have recently decided that pork can be cooked to 145-160 degrees. Since I’m cooking these whole, I went in the middle at 150-155 degrees knowing that the middle will be more like medium rare and the ends more well done.
Remove your pork from the grill and tent loosely with foil to keep it warm while it rests.
Use tongs to drain the mushrooms and place them on the hot grill. Cook the mushrooms 2-3 minutes per side until slightly soft and slightly charred.
Keep an eye on the mushrooms so they don’t get overly done and mushy.
After the pork has rested about 10 minutes, cut it into slices about 1 inch thick.
To serve, I tossed a bunch of fresh arugula with just a bit of olive oil, salt & pepper. Place a few greens on each plate and top with slices of pork and portabella.
Spoon the red pepper coulis (sauce) over the meat and mushrooms.
I added some steamed asparagus as a green veg. You could also add some roasted or boiled new potatoes or even couscous as a starch. If you have a vegetarian in your midst, serving them a whole mushroom would make a good substitute for the meat.
The warmth of the pork tenderloin and portabella mushrooms will slightly wilt the arugula making it tender and more flavorful.
Each bite was a burst of flavor.
Note: As shown here, this recipe makes enough for 6 people. It’s great leftover but if you are serving fewer, it is easily cut in half. Either way, you will likely have leftover red pepper sauce to have on some pasta the next day.
Dad was right. He said when he saw this recipe in the newspaper, he knew it would be something we would all love.
Pork & Portabellas with Red Pepper Coulis is definitely a keeper!
Here’s the recipe – Adapted from the Kansas City Star