Nov 2, 2009

Pork Tenderloin Sandwiches with Rosemary Potatoes.

      My son Cass is home sick with chicken pox since monday last week. Not fun! Besides missing a week of school ( he is not to sad about it) he also missed 2 Halloween parties on friday, one at the school, and the most important one at the Dojo where he does Ju-jitsu. Now, that was a problem. His brothers both of them were able to attend and he was not very pleased to be left behind.
Seeing your child unhappy and not being able to do anything about it is the most unsettling felling a mother can have. I had to do something to put a smile on his face (and he has a great smile), so, we decided to have a movie party at home, and he got to choose the menu.
We spend a few hours going over recipes until he was satisfied. I have to admit that I was utterly surprised at his choice of pork sandwiches. Cass doesn't like pork, he never ever eats pork, only chicken and fish. I can count on my fingers how many time a year I make pork. So here is to show you that the expression " We eat with our eyes first " is true! Or how important the pictures of a recipe are, in this case the video.

In the end this was the menu that he decide on.

Pork tenderloin sandwiches
Roasted rosemary potatoes
 Sour cream coffee cake.

Since my first days on the food buzz back in may, I had made many great friends. One of them is Steve who is (what I like to call) an ambassador for Rouxbe online cooking school.  Steve had send me over the months many great posts, I love the videos of the recipes and the daily lessons they have.
The pork tenderloin sandwiches and the roasted potatoes are both recipes from Rouxbe website.
I only made one minor change in the pork tenderloin recipe by adding the smoked paprika and using whole grain baguette, I also used 4 pork tenderloins not only one ( small ones)
I cannot tell you how much Cass loved the pork. It is his favorite "dish" now. And that says a lot!  Cass is picky! This is the child that claimed that the store bought bread gives him HEADACHES !!!!! As a result I should make sure I  ALWAYS  have Fresh home made bread....!!!!!

So, back to the food.

Pork tenderloin sandwiches.


For brining the pork ( optional, but highly recommended)

1/2 cup kosher salt
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup hot water
1 tsp juniper berries ( i didn't have any, couldn't find 'em in the supermarket, so I will say is optional)
1 small bunch fresh thyme
2 bay leaves
1 tsp black peppercorns
1 clove garlic ( smashed)
3 cups cold water
1 pork tenderloin ( I used 4 small ones)

To cook the pork you will need

extra virgin olive oil ( for the frying pan)
1 tbsp of butter
salt and pepper to taste ( I used sea salt)
about 4 tbsp of smoked paprika ( optional)

To make the sandwiches you will need:

1 or 2  baguettes ( depending on how manny pork tenderloins you use. I would say one per pork tenderloin)
Caramelized onions ( I used 4 big vidalia onions, but I had some left over)
About 400 g thickly sliced cheese. The recipe calls for brie cheese ( I used Swiss cheese for my husband, and creamy havarty for the boys)

 Start by removing the excess fat and the silver skin from the pork tenderloin.

 To make the brine, use a dish big enough to accommodate the pork tenderloin(s), mix the hot water with the salt and sugar. Add the fresh thyme,  the bay leaves, the spices and the smashed clove of garlic.
Let infuse for about 10 minutes. Add the 3 cups of cold water. Mix. Place the pork in the brine making sure is fully submerged. Cover the dish and place in the fridge for 1 or 2 hours.

After 2 hours remove the pork from the brine and pat dry with paper towel. Discard the brine. Slice the pork across into 1/2 thick slices into medallions.

Using the flat side of a mallet, flatten each medallion slightly. Season with sea salt, pepper and smoked paprika if using.

To cook the pork, preheat a large nonstick pan to medium-high heat. When is hot add the olive oil and the tbsp of butter and let it melt. Add the pork in a single layer and cook for about 1 minute until you see a  bit of white around the edges.

Flip it over and cook for about 1 minute longer.

Transfer the pork to a tray or dish to rest ( and keep warm) while you cook the next batch.  Don't forget to add more olive oil as needed it. When all the pork is cooked cover to keep warm .

To make the sandwiches:

Slice the baguettes into 1/2-inch slices ( slightly angled) and place on a baking sheet. Preheat the broil and toast the bread for about 1 minute ( keep an eye on it)

Add a small amount of caramelized onions on each slice of bread.

Add the sliced cheese, and return to the oven for  30 or 40 seconds until the cheese is slightly melted.

Top with one piece of pork, and more onions ( if you like ). Serve immediately.


If you are interested in seeing the cooking video for the pork tenderloin ( and I fully recommend it) here is the link.

For the roasted potatoes that I served with the pork sandwiches.

 You will need

 About 1.5 pounds small potatoes ( I used a variety pack) or fingerling potatoes.
1 generous tbsp of fresh rosemary finely chopped.
3 tbsp of extra- virgin olive oil.
Sea salt and pepper to taste

Preheat the oven to 400˚F. Wash and dry the potatoes. Place the potatoes in a big mixing bowl. Drizzle with olive oil,add the chopped rosemary and season with sea salt and pepper.
Line a baking tray with tin foil. Add the potatoes in a single layer. Place in the oven and bake for 15 minutes, turn the potatoes over and bake for another 5 to 10 minutes.
Test the potatoes by inserting a knife into the thickest part. It should slide off easily.

To see the video recipe for the roasted potatoes here is the link( again, you should watch it and browse thru other recipe videos they have on their site.

Serve with the sandwiches, and enjoy while watching a great movie. Contrary to what I expected we had a comedy movie night. Usually we vote for what movie to be watched, this time he got to choose, and I fully expected a Tim Burton movie (Cass is his biggest fan) but he bypass Beetlejuice, Edward Scissorhands, Coraline and even The night before Christmas his all time favorite; For National security and Big Momma's House ( with funny Martin Lawrence)

We had a great time! It was a Happy Halloween! Or in Cass's words.

  The Night Before Halloween!


alison said...

un adevarat festin!dar poza aia cu muschiul strabatut de condimente,gata de sacrificiu, e nemaipomenita!

Laura said...

Thanks Simona, baietii si hubby au fost foarte multumiti.

Federica said...

wow che piatti favolosi!! tutti buonissimi!! complimenti per le bellissime foto!ciao!

lululu said...

such a loving mom u r!
both the sandwich and potato look so delicious! especially the gooey cheese!
hope cass get well soon!

Laura said...

Thank you Frederica, I do have to learn some Italian:)

Laura said...

thanks lululu,
Cass is much better now, tomorrow we have a doctor's appoinment, and hopefully.... Back to school.

pegasuslegend said...

Wonderful and delicious looking....certainly hope your child is feeling better and the doc finds him on the road to recovery...sorry to hear he is ill...take care

Laura said...

Thank you Claudia. He is much better now, hopefully he can go back to school.

CaptnRachel aka Tha Pizza Cutta said...

Which one: havarti brie, or swiss??!? I'll take one with each, please. :p)

Laura said...

Coming right up! One of each...:)

Belinda @zomppa said...

Poor Cass! Glad you could a smile on his face. The onions are a nice addition to this. Thanks!

Laura said...

So am I, Belinda. Thanks for visiting.

Anncoo said...

I really love these especially with the potatoes!

Laura said...

Thanks Anncoo,
So so we.

Anonymous said...

These are terrific, delicious sandwiches! I hope you son feels better very soon!

Divina Pe said...

Laura, that's yum and so delicious. I agree that Steve is the Rouxbe Ambassador. Looking forward to your other recipes. Hope your son is doing good now.

Conor @ HoldtheBeef said...

Poor Cass! I absolutely love that he is such a foodie at his age, wow! I'm sure this food will have him up and fighting again in no time :)

Federica said...

ciao Laura!!! io devo imparare l'inglese!!!

Il pane s'impasta benissimo anche a mano, solo che io per praticità una un'impastatrice.
guarda qui:


Jeannie said...

Hi Laura, sorry to hear that your son has chicken pox. But your food will definitely bring cheers to him. He's a lucky fella to have such a good cook for a mummy.


Laura said...

@ 5 Star Foodie,
Those are really good, And thank you for the well wishes.

@Divina Pe,

Thanks Divina, Cass is felling much better he is returning to school starting tomorrow.

@ Connor,

You have no idea... Cass is placing the order before he leaves for school and when he gets home his food is waiting for him.That's how much of a foodie he is.

Ciao Federica,

Thanks for the link, but the truth is I don't like using a bread machine I love knitting the dough by hand and then making the bread in the oven.


Thank you Jeannie, cass is much better now, I would like to think that some of it is because of my cooking (LOL).

My Little Space said...

Oh Laura, haven't make this for years! Will try to make this in chicken. Cheers.

Federica said...

ciao Laura io uso la macchina solo per impastare, perchè ne impasto molto di pane !

La farina Manitoba la troviamo qui in Italia nei supermercati, senza problemi!


Laura said...

Hi Kristy,
Whit chicken breast would be delicious.

San said...

You have got a lovely blog .The recipes are so colorful and tempting.

Laura said...

Thank you San, and thank you for visiting my blog.

Anonymous said...

hi laura. good to hear from you. sorry for not replying sooner as I have been so busy the month of October. It was nuts! I hope your little ones are feeling better. These pork chop look super yummy! you always make some fantastic stuff.

Laura said...

Hi Bri,

Don't worry about it. I'm really busy with my son Cass trying to catch up with all his school work. Thanks for the comment.

Patty said...

Wow! This looks amazing! I'm always afraid to cook with pork loin - not sure why, but it might have something to do with the fact that I didn't grow up with pork. In any case, this looks gorgeous and will definitely try it soon! Thanks for sharing!

Laura said...

My pleasure Patty. And it is very easy cooking with pork easier then with chicken and faster. I hope you will try it:)

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