Pork Tenderloin with Wine-Braised Onions

February 28, 2010

This afternoon, without much of a plan, I started sautéing some yellow onions in a little olive oil. Without knowing what these onions were going to do, I poured a third of a bottle of wine over them, added a few spices, turned the heat down, and let them cook for an hour.

Once I realized that I had a pork tenderloin in the fridge, it all started to come together. Sometimes the best ideas just sortof, well, happen.

So here it is, Pork Tenderloin with Wine-Braised Onions.

For the onions:
1 small to medium yellow onion, sliced thin
1 pinch of kosher salt
About 1 cup of dry red table wine
2 cloves
5 peppercorns
1 bay leaf
1/2 cup beef or chicken broth

For the pork:
1 pork tenderloin, trimmed of any excess fat and silver skin
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
6 black peppercorns
2 whole cloves
1 small bay leaf
1 small bunch fresh thyme

  • In a small saucepan, heat a small amount of olive oil over medium heat until glossy.
  • Add the onions and salt and sauté for a moment or two, then add the rest of the ingredients except the broth. Partially cover.
  • Turn the heat down to medium-low and simmer until the wine has reduced to a few remaining tablespoons (about 20 minutes), and then add the broth.
  • Continue to cook uncovered over low heat until the liquid is reduced again and the onions are tender.
  • Keep warm until ready to serve.
  • Pre-heat the oven to 375° and place a sheet pan in the oven to preheat.
  • Salt the pork, set aside.
  • In a quart-sized bag, mix all the ingredients and close the bag. Shake vigorously.
  • Place the pork in the marinade, and seal the bag, pushing all the excess air out.
  • Marinate for 30 (or up to 60) minutes, turning the bag over every 10 minutes to ensure an even marinade.
  • Take the pork out of the marinade and dry well on a paper towel. Rub a small amount of oil on the pork, and place on the pre-heated baking dish.
  • Bake for about 30 minutes, turning the pork every 10 minute. Test the pork after about 20 minutes to avoid overcooking. You’re looking for a slight amount of pink in the center.
  • Remove from the oven and tent with tin foil for 5 minutes.
  • Slice thinly and serve with braised onions.


(In the future, I’ll pan sear the pork before putting it in the oven for a better crust. But keep an eye on the pork. I know you’ve been taught to cook the hell out of pork, but leave a little pink in the center. It’ll continue to cook once it’s out of the oven and tented.)

One comment

  1. I will be making these onions next week. Can you tell I’m catching up with your blog? I like the new pic of the bridge even though you don’t live in SF. Faker.

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