This could be an alternative to roast turkey perhaps on New Year’s Day. The sage infused dressing gives you that familiar aroma of sage. You can do much of the initial preparation ahead of time
This is a recipe that turns pork tenderloins(fillets) into an elegant and delicious main course. The tenderloin is split and stuffed with a fragrant stuffing. It is important you use fresh sage. Fresh sage in itself is sublime. Dried and put into a little bottle sitting on the supermarket shelf, it becomes bitter and harsh. Fortunately even in the darkest days of winter most supermarkets carry fresh herbs. You can use fresh sage many different ways. Try frying them briefly in butter to serve along with your favorite dish. They do have a good shelf in your refrigerator.
PORK WITH SAGE AND CAPERS (serves 6 to 8)
25 G(1 OZ) 1/2 TB UNSALTED BUTTER
2 TBS EXTRA VIRGIN OLIVE OIL
1 ONION FINELY CHOPPED
100 g (3 1/2 oz / 1 1/4 cups) fresh white breadcrumb s (or even dried if you wish. I find either works just fine. I actually prefer the dry)
2 tsp chopped sage (don’t be shy here, be generous with your seasoning)
1 tbsp parsley chopped (any kind)
2 tsp grated lemon zest
3 tbs, rinsed and drained capers
2 large (about 500 g/ 1 lb ) each
8 large thin slices bacon
2 tsp all-purpose flour
100 ml (3 1/2 oz) dry vermouth
315 ml (10 fl oz/ 1 1/4 cups) chicken or vegetable stock
8 whole, extra sage leaves to garnish
Preheat the oven to 170C (325f F/gas 3) Heat the butter and l tbsp of the oil in a frying pan Add the onion. sprinkle with a little salt) and saute for about 5 minutes until translucent.
Put the breadcrumbs, sage, parsley, lemon zest, the cooked onion and 2 tbs capers in a bowl. Add the egg, season well (lots of ground pepper here plus salt;) and mix to combine.
Using a sharp knife, split each pork fillet in half lengthways, taking care not to cut all the way through, and open out. Spread the stuffing (half) down the length and pat firmly into place.
Tie with string at regular intervals.
Heat a large saute pan, add a little olive oil, and quickly brown each side of the pork (about 3-5 minutes).
Remove from pan and place in your roasting pan. Wrap bacon around each fillet. Insert meat thermometer and roast to 145F. The juices should run clear. Remove from baking dish and tent with tinfoil.
Place the baking dish on the stove top, and add the flour and stir in well. Add the vermouth (or white wine) and allow to bubble for l minute or so. Add the stock and whisk while cooking to remove all the lumps. Simmer for about 5 minutes and then add the remaining capers to the sauce.
In a small saucepan, heat the remaining oil and when very hot, fry the sage leaves until crisp. Drain on paper towels.
Slice the pork into 2 cm(3/4 inch) slices. Spoon a little sauce over the pork and serve each portion with fried sage leaves.
CHEFS NOTES: Left over pork makes wonderful sandwiches. This recipe can easily be halved. Use just one tenderloin. You could even cut the tenderloin in half, and cut the very small amount for two people. This recipe is very forgiving. Just be sure to put lots of seasoning in the dressing. It is what makes this dish outstanding.