Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Smithfield® Prime Fresh Pork. The opinions and text are all mine.
There aren’t too many things that I get truly excited about. You know, the kind of excited where you get giddy and feel like a little kid on Christmas morning. Well, the holiday season does that for me. There is something about the last few months of the year that is so inspiring and joyful. I believe that it’s because most people are so cheerful and, happy for the holidays and, the time spent with family and all the delicious food.
Every year we spend most of the holidays between my family and my husband’s family. It gets tiring and sometimes I just want to stay home and relax on the couch, but I always end up happy that we made the effort to spend time with our family and to make special memories. Like any good event, no matter whose house we are going to, there is always an abundance of food. Everybody brings a dish of some sort and we all chow down and stuff ourselves until we can barely move. That’s what the holidays are all about, right?
There are two things that I bring to our family feasts, a dessert and a delicious pork tenderloin. Although it takes more time and effort, I try to make as much as I can from scratch. Because I love fresh food, I often shop at Market Street (a United company) because of their large variety of products and large selection of fresh meat. When I am cooking my yearly Pork Tenderloin, I always choose Smithfield Prime Fresh Pork Tenderloin for many reasons. Smithfield is 20% more tender than other leading brands for Natural Pork, there are no added hormones, steroids and contains no artificial ingredients. Those are all very important to me and prove that not all pork is created equal. When buying Smithfield Prime Fresh Pork, you can find it in the fresh meat department of United. And right now you can go to United’s homepage and find a coupon waiting for you to use on your very own Smithfield Prime Fresh Pork! It’s always a breeze to find and clearly marked.
Now, let’s get cooking. Once you have bought your Smithfield Prime Fresh Pork Tenderloin, the first thing we need to do is season it. Keep in mind that pork tenderloins have very little fat so we need to take the necessary steps to keep it flavored and moist so our final product is a delicious juicy piece of meat. Pat the pork tenderloin dry, then season and salt it with your favorite rub. This is a key step. If we don’t pat it dry, the pork tenderloin won’t sear.
For my rub, I like equal parts salt, pepper, brown sugar and cumin.
Once the tenderloin is seasoned, we need to sear the pork on all sides. I do this in my cast iron skillet on the stove with minimal oil. Sear all sides until they’re golden brown. Since I was using a cast iron skillet, it didn’t take too long for each side to sear about 2 minutes on each side.
When the tenderloin gets to a beautiful brown color, then it’s time to finish the cooking process in the oven. I keep the oven temperature very high (400 degrees) and cook for an additional 15-20 minutes flipping the meat about half way through. Having an internal thermometer is key when cooking with pork tenderloin since it has a pink tint to the meat, it’s difficult to know when it’s cooked properly. After cooking for about 15 minutes, use your internal thermometer and stick it in the thickest part of the meat. You want the thermometer to register between 145 and 150 degrees F. There will be a pink tint to the meat at this temperature, if you would prefer, cook a little longer but be careful not to overcook the meat. Overcooking tenderloin is easy to do since you want to make sure it’s done but overcooking also leaves the meat very dry and loses the juiciness.
If you’re like me, you’ll want to whip up a quick sauce to pour over the meat to help bring out the flavors. This is very simple and I recommend making a sauce any chance you get. Use the pan that you seared the pork tenderloin in and add about 1 cup of chicken stock. Cook the liquid until about half reduced and add a dollop of butter to the mix. Add any spices you would like to this mixture. My favorite is using rosemary and thyme blends with the chicken stock. If you have it handy, use a dry red wine instead of the chicken stock to bring out even more flavor. Once the sauce is made, pour over the pork tenderloin.
This recipe is fool proof and so easy to make. Not only is the recipe easy, but the Smithfield Prime Fresh Pork Tenderloin never disappoints. My family always thinks that I put so much effort into this dish, but little do they know it’s just an amazing piece of meat, and I really don’t have to do much to make this dish. Once you make this dish, you’ll realize that not all pork is created equal, and you’ll be hooked.
My family loves this dish, which is why I bring it year after year. It’s one of the only dishes that gets eaten in its entirety each holiday. I know that my family appreciates a delicious pork dish and I know yours will too.
What do you bring to your holiday feast with your family and friends each year? Leave a comment and share your recipes.