Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Fancypants Pork Sauce

It all started with this little jar of simple syrup that I made for the granita and saved the rest in the fridge. My mother's training is with me still - it pains me to throw away any little thing. But, what to do with a few tablespoons of spiced simple syrup?

I had thawed a pork tenderloin to fix for our dinner - I almost always do it as Jacques Pépin recommends, sprinkling the medallions with salt, pepper, and thyme before browning in butter on one side, flipping and inserting the pan into a 350 degree F oven for about five minutes. Because this preparation is so common to us, I wanted to jazz it up just a little.

I had two very ripe nectarines on the counter, too, so ripe they were attracting fruit flies and looking like they were ready to spoil, so I thought to make some kind of fruity topping for the tenderloin as a change from good old applesauce. And the word "gastrique" popped into my mind like a champagne bubble. *Bink!* 

Maybe a little fancypants, but I was willing to try.

Off to the interwebs, where I perused several recipes before choosing this one as my template. I followed the recipe almost exactly, but I did use garlic instead of shallot, I chose the cognac instead of the wine, and added my little jar of simple syrup instead of the sugar in the recipe. My choice for vinegar was white wine vinegar.

It was easy to make, just a quick sauté for the garlic in the butter, then add all the rest of the ingredients and bring to a boil, then simmer for about 20 minutes. I was tempted to leave it all chunky but the recipe said it should be smooth, so I let it cool in the pot before zizzing it with an immersion blender. 

Sometimes, I'm a little chicken about trying new tastes; I was suspicious of the flavors, even though a quick finger dipping did taste good, so I served it in a little bowl alongside the meat. Next time, I'd just pour it on!  It was wonderfully sweet-tart-salty without being at all aggressive, a great little wake-up call for the taste buds that complemented the mild pork without drowning out the meat's flavor. I loved the combination with the thyme on the pork - turns out nectarines and thyme are a dynamite duo.

Best of all, it keeps for a couple of weeks in the fridge, so I'm going to try it with roast chicken next. It wasn't fancypants at all - it was just plain delicious.


Blogger Whiting Hyland said...

That sounds super …Wish my family liked pork more, just me.I'll try it for friends then.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015  
Blogger Zoomie said...

Whiting, they might like pork tenderloin as it is very lean, but if you don't overlook it, it's moist, too.

Thursday, September 17, 2015  
Blogger Greg said...

Nectarines and pork sounds like a marriage made in heaven!

Tuesday, September 22, 2015  
Blogger Zoomie said...

Greg, they are! And the sweet-sour nature of gastrique is perfect, too.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015  

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