For whatever reason, I’ve been finding it particularly difficult to get centered now that I’ve returned to the US. It shouldn’t be a problem—I was only gone a couple of weeks—but I’ve been both antsy and low energy since I got back. As a result, I’ve been living on deli and carryout. Good quality carryout, but carryout nonetheless.
Today, for the first time since I left Venice, I made a serious lunch at home.
I turned to an old recipe from Epicurious for Spiced Pork Tenderloin with Cherry-Thyme Pan Sauce. I gave the pork loin a coriander rub, and then pan-fried it in olive oil to give it a golden crust on all sides. Once that was done, I removed it and cooked sliced shallots and a dozen sprigs of thyme in the same pan. Then came balsamic vinegar, red wine, deglazing, and the secret ingredient, sugar. After the sauce cooked down, I swirled in a big hunk of butter, because once I’m in the kitchen, I turn into a total hedonist who cares not a bit about things like high cholesterol levels. The last thing into the pan was a generous portion of dark sweet cherries. The last things out of the pan were those sprigs of thyme.
(This being April, I had to use frozen-but-thawed cherries. Can’t wait to try this recipe again once I can get fresh ones.)
For the side, I used an incredibly simple Martha Stewart recipe. I sautéed minced garlic in—here it comes again—a big hunk of butter, then wilted spinach in it. It always surprises me how much things like spinach and kale cook down. You start with what looks like a three-week supply, and end up with two meagre servings.
It all worked, and it looked great.