Spinach-Pesto-Stuffed Pork Tenderloin

 


Pork Tenderloin stuffed with Pesto and Spinach

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Ingredients:

1 pork tenderloin (about 1-lb in weight)

4 ounces baby spinach, chopped

2 Tbs prepared pesto

2 Tbs sun-dried tomatoes, chopped fine

1 Tbs pine nuts

Why we like it:

Pork tenderloin is naturally lean, and cooks up quickly, lending itself perfectly to no-fuss weeknight meals. You can have a healthy meal on the table in under an hour!

How to prepare it:

Before you handle any of the ingredients, preheat your oven to 400°F.

Now you will want to get all of your ingredients together. This is what chefs call “mise en place” – which is French for “putting it together”. That’s exactly what you do when you cook. And the more organized you are, the smoother the process.

Fresh Stuffing ingredients

See how nice that looks? Now you have everything where you need it, all measured out and ready to go. Well, almost!

Mixing together vegetables and herbs

Next, you will want to chop up your spinach and sun-dried tomatoes. If you purchase your baby spinach in one of those convenient 10-oz clamshells, remove a generous handful or two – that should be about 4 ounces. Now you’re free to chop away. Combine the chopped spinach and sun-dried tomatoes in a bowl with the pine nuts. Drizzle the pesto over, and stir to coat the ingredients evenly. This will be your filling for your pork tenderloin.

Now you’re ready to handle the pork. You will need to butterfly your pork tenderloin. If you are short on time, you can always ask the Meat Department at Sunset Foods to butterfly it for you, saving yourself a step and some time!

 

To butterfly your pork tenderloin, make a series of slits lengthwise 2/3 of the way through the tenderloin, like so:

 

Butterflied pork tenderloin

Lay the butterflied tenderloin out flat, and take your filling and spoon it evenly over the surface.

Spooning the stuffing into the pork and rolling the tenderloin up

Finally, you need to secure everything in place. Begin by rolling up the pork tenderloin. Simply fold one side over the other and roll.

Securing the pork with twine

Then you need to tie the tenderloin up with butcher’s twine. Chefs and butchers like to use one long piece of twine to do this. But it’s perfectly acceptable – and quite a bit easier – to tie several smaller pieces around the tenderloin. If using several small pieces, we recommend that you cut five pieces and position them evenly beneath the tenderloin on your cutting board. Then simply tie them up and trim the excess. Your finished, stuffed and tied tenderloin should look just like this.

By now your oven should be all warmed up. Place the tenderloin on a baking sheet and roast for 15-20 minutes or until an instant read thermometer inserted in the middle of the tenderloin reads 135°F. Try and keep the thermometer tip in the meaty portion of the tenderloin as the pesto will heat up faster than the meat.

Let the meat rest at least 5 minutes before slicing. How easy was that??

A plate of pork with fresh cooked vegetables

For a quick and easy side dish, toss your choice of vegetables with olive oil, sea salt and black pepper; place them on a baking sheet and roast alongside the pork in a 400°F oven. (How convenient, that’s the same temperature for cooking your pork!)

 

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