This recipe is a breeze to make, but combines its ease with stylish good taste in its choices of ingredients.
The pork tenderloin that is roasted in the oven is nicely complemented with two forms of fennel, the fragrant vegetable and the seed -- both lending delicate anise flavor to the meat.
The recipe comes from a feature titled Rush Hour! in the March issue of Good Housekeeping magazine, with the promise that you can have dinner on the table in half an hour.
A tip from the magazine's editors: "It's very important to use the pan size the recipe calls for. A smaller pan or one with higher sides (like a roasting pan) will cause pork and fennel to steam and thus prevent proper browning."
Roast Pork Tenderloin
Total preparation and cooking time: 30 minutes
2 medium bulbs fennel (about 1 pound each), trimmed and cut lengthwise into 1/2-inch-thick slices, leaving core intact
1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons olive oil
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 whole pork tenderloin (about 1 pound)
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 teaspoon fennel seeds, crushed
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley leaves
1 teaspoon grated fresh lemon peel
Herb sprigs for garnish
Arrange oven rack in lower third of oven. Preheat oven to 475 F.
In 15 1/2-by-10 1/2-inch jellyroll pan, toss fresh fennel with 1 tablespoon oil, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/8 teaspoon pepper. Push fennel to sides of pan.
Place pork in center of pan with fennel. In small bowl, stir sugar, fennel seeds and remaining 2 teaspoons oil, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1/8 teaspoon pepper. Rub fennel-seed mixture all over pork.
Roast pork and fennel, stirring fennel occasionally, 20 to 25 minutes or until meat thermometer inserted into thickest part of pork reaches 155 F.
Meanwhile, in small bowl, stir parsley and lemon peel.
Transfer pork to cutting board; cut into slices. Place sliced pork on large platter; sprinkle with half of parsley mixture. Toss fennel with remaining parsley mixture and arrange around pork. Garnish with herb sprigs.
Makes 4 main-dish servings.
Nutrition information per serving: about 260 cal., 26 g pro., 16 g carbo., 11 g total fat (2 g saturated), 5 g fiber, 71 mg chol., 580 mg sodium.
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