The day I was planning to make this recipe, I realized that I had forgotten a key ingredient at the grocery store. It's kind of hard to make cherry thyme pan sauce without any cherries. LUCKILY, I have a husband who LOVES to stop at the store on his way home from work to pick up the things that I forgot while I was at the grocery store for 2 hours earlier that day. Once he agreed to pick up the cherries, I started thinking that I should have been more specific. I mean, technically there are lots of different kinds of cherries that one can find at the grocery store, and I was a little worried that he would gravitate to the kind that you find in a bar. Like, the bright red maraschino cherries in the sugary syrup that stain your fingers. Call me crazy, but I have a feeling those wouldn't make the best thyme pan sauce for pork tenderloin.
Luckily, he came through in the clutch and came home with the right kind of cherries. Granted, it was an inordinate number of them, and we could have been eating cherries for years if we wanted, but beggars cannot be choosers, eh?
I was super excited about this recipe and it didn't disappoint. I am always looking for new ways to cook pork tenderloin, as it's one of my favorite cuts of meat. Its lean and tender and oh so juicy if you don't overcook it. I could eat it every day. This one is definitely going on the "make again" list, and it would be perfect for company or a romantic dinner for two. I mean, it WAS pretty romantic when we ate this at the coffee table in front of the TV with reruns of "How I Met Your Mother" on. I mean, there was wine! Wine is romantic, yes?
Anyway, eat this however you want, with whoever you want. Tastes good either way.
Pork Tenderloin with Cherry Thyme Sauce
Source: Adapted from Rock Recipes
1 large pork tenderloin, trimmed and silver skin removed
1/2 teaspoon each of cumin, cayenne, and blackening seasoning (sounds weird, but trust me)
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
Salt and pepper to taste, use LOTS of black pepper
Combine the spices and rub on the pork. Let sit for 30 minutes and then roast in a 425 oven for 25 minutes or until internal temperature reaches 150. Remove and cover with foil to allow it to finish cooking. Meanwhile, make the sauce:
2 cups fresh pitted cherries, quartered
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
salt and pepper to season
2 cloves minced garlic
2 tsp chopped fresh thyme
2 tbsp honey
Simmer the balsamic vinegar over medium heat until it is reduced to a syrupy consistency. Set aside to cool or immerse bottom of the pan in cold water to cool down the reduction. Toss in the other ingredients and allow to stand for about a half hour before serving.
Slice pork and serve with cherry sauce on top.