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Verses from my Kitchen: Rosemary & Dijon Pork with Arugula Salad

April 13, 2011

Rosemary & Dijon Pork with Arugula Salad

Tuesday. I gingerly slide out of bed when the sky is painted midnight black. The landscape has been washed in hues unrecogniable without the help of light. It feels like I slept two hours, even though that's not the case. By the time I'm ready to leave, lunch packed and coffee in hand, the roosters at rural farms are stretching. This is the beginning. 

This is the day of the week when time is a major issue. The day speeds along and I play catch up. I'm always a step behind and a faded memory waiting to happen. When I finally walk through the door at night I'm hungry and it's late. Sound familiar? We all face days like this. Long days and late nights and hungry. Starving.

These are the days when we need quick meals. But we can't sarcrifice taste and nutrition for the sake of speek. I have go-to meals ready for the occasion. This is one of those meals. Dijon Rosemary Pork with Arugula Salad is the perfect meal for that hellish day. Fairly quick, super easy and flavourful.

I prep the pork the night before because first thing in the morning I'm half-asleep and would prefer not testing my knife skills in that state. Besides, it gives the pork a chance to marry with the ingredients so dinner is drunk with flavour. This is the first step in saving necessary time.

When I do walk through the door I head upstairs to change while the oven preheats. Great time management that, although not normally one of my strong suits, is required if I want to eat before it's too late. When I get back to the kitchen I quickly sear the meat on the stove and place it in the oven. This is key because I can prep almost everything else while the pork cooks away.

When I take the pork out I tent it to let the juices redistribute and use the pan to caramelize the onions in and scrape up all that flavour attached to the pan. A few minutes later the onions and chickpeas are ready and the pork is ready to be sliced.  Quick and painless.

This is one of my favourite types of weeknight meals. I'm famished, it's late and and I get the food to the table in good time. It's better than take-out and it tastes great! So the next time you're crunched for time, check this recipe out. It works for me.

From my kitchen to yours, happy eating!

Rosemary & Dijon Pork with Arugula Salad

The Goods:
  • 2 tbsp. rosemary, chopped
  • 1/4 cup dijon mustard
  • 1 garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp. lemon juice
  • 1 pork tenderloin, fat trimmed off
  • 1 large onion, finely sliced
  • 1/2 cup grape tomatoes, thinly sliced
  • 2 tbsp. maple balsamic vinegar
  • 1 half can of chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • arugula
  • sea salt and cracked pepper
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Using a small mixing bowl, combine dijon, rosemary, garlic, and lemon juice. Add the pork and rub in to coat and season. If you're doing it the  night before, cover and leave until you're home the next day. Otherwise, proceed to next step.
  3. Heat a large saute pan to medium-high and add oil. Remove pork from bowl and shake off extra marinade. Sear the pork on all sides for 2-3 minutes each, or until nicely browned. Place in the oven and cook for 25 minutes or until the interal temperature is 155 degrees. The temperature will rise when it's resting.
  4. Using the same pan, add a bit of oil and the onions. Cook for a minute over medium-high heat while scraping the bits off the bottom. Add the balsamic or sherry vinegar and a splash of water and let it thicken, about 1 minute. When the onion is softened and caramelized, add the tomatoes and chickepeas and season.
  5. Put arugula on a plate and tip in the contents from the pan. Slice the pork and rest it on top. Drizzle remaining sauce over top.
  6. Serves 2-3.

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At April 13, 2011 at 5:29 PM , Blogger A Thought For Food said...

Pork is one of those meats that doesn't have a huge amount of flavor, so it needs to be paired with the right sides to bring that out.

Looks like a marvelous recipe here, Mike. Just beautiful!

At April 13, 2011 at 6:06 PM , Blogger Cookin' Canuck said...

What a great make-ahead kind of meal. Your photos are lovely, Mike.

At April 13, 2011 at 6:17 PM , Blogger Michael Lewicki said...

Thanks Brian! I agree, I love pork but there's not a lot of inherent flavour.

Thank you Dara! I appreciate that!

At April 13, 2011 at 7:02 PM , Blogger Sippity Sup said...

You forgot to mention when in the process do you make time to take such beautiful photos! GREG

At April 13, 2011 at 7:08 PM , Blogger Carolyn said...

This really looks wonderful and I love hearing that it's an easy weeknight meal! Hope your Wednesday was better than your tuesday.

At April 13, 2011 at 7:22 PM , Anonymous Stephanie (@globaldish) said...

Wow, looks like an absolutely gorgeous meal. I love dishes that can be prepared ahead of time... it just makes dinnertime that much more pleasant. Thank you for the recipe, can't wait to try it!

At April 13, 2011 at 8:13 PM , Blogger LaPhemmePhoodie said...

Gorgeous photos. We definitely all have crazy days that speed by. It's nice to have recipes like this to rely on.

At April 14, 2011 at 1:30 PM , Blogger KC Quaretti- Lee said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

At April 14, 2011 at 1:34 PM , Blogger KC Quaretti- Lee said...

Really enjoyable post! Great photos and super idea to start the tenderlion the night before!
I'll be following your blog from now on; glad I found it!
Enjoy your time in the kitchen,
KC Quaretti-Lee

At April 16, 2011 at 9:36 AM , Blogger Michael Lewicki said...

Greg, I rush like mad. And click and hope. ;)

Thanks Carolyn! We all need easy weeknight meals.

Thanks Stephanie! And thanks for dropping in!

TY LaPhemme! I agree!

KC, so nice of you to say that! I'm glad you're following on as well and thanks for the comment!

At April 18, 2011 at 3:40 PM , Blogger Diethood.com said...

Ah, I so needed my dose of your beautiful, delicious recipes... That pork needs to be mine! I love love love what you did with it... and the arugula...mmm...beautiful!

At June 26, 2011 at 12:56 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Made this tonight......FABULOUS!!! Love your blog...have tried several of your recipes and they do not disappoint! Great Blog!
Teresa in Texas


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