For when you want something a bit fancy and easy
I don’t know about you, but, every now and again, I want a bit of a fancy main course that takes almost zero effort. I want something that looks and tastes amazing, and I want it to come together easily. Enter Roast Pork Tenderloin with Blood Oranges. Comforting and bright, this is the perfect dish for cold winter days.
Citrus is winter’s redeeming quality
I’m still OK with the snow situation, but with three storms due in the same week, I might flip the switch to screaming “DEATHFLAKES!” for the rest of the year any day now. When that happens, I look for winter’s redeeming quality, and that quality is citrus. No grapefruit is safe from me during the dark days of winter, and I incorporate more citrus into my cooking (or make salads with it—Winter Citrus Salad, anyone?).
I spied some gorgeous blood oranges
I found some blood oranges at the market the other day, and I decided to roast a pork tenderloin with them. Blood oranges are sweet and bitter at the same time, which is my idea of a good thing when it comes to meat dishes. That and they are gorgeous. Just slices of them look like a holiday. Perfect for a week with three snowstorms on tap.
Roast Pork Tenderloin with Blood Oranges puts those beauties to use!
Roast Pork Tenderloin with Blood Oranges starts with a marinade in fresh-squeezed blood orange juice, some honey, garlic, and herbs. That marinade is transformed into a lovely sauce, reduced while the tenderloin cooks.
The roast itself has blood orange slices on top. The oranges flavor the dish, and become a festive garnish.
Suitable for an occasion, but easy enough for a WFH weeknight
You could serve Roast Pork Tenderloin with Blood Oranges for a dinner party (the recipe is for one pork tenderloin, but you could easily scale it, using the guide in the recipe), or on a work-from-home weeknight. The only real time involved is the two- or three-hour marinade in the fridge and letting the tenderloin come to room temperature before roasting. You do need to keep an eye on things while the tenderloin roasts, but you can make the sauce at the same time.
Roast Pork Tenderloin with Blood Oranges is absolutely delicious
And this dish? It tastes SO good. It took a little trial and error to get this dish right, but the flavor was never the issue. The honey softens the bitterness of the orange, and the rosemary and garlic come through to balance everything and bring it together. The sauce isn’t heavy, with only a pat of finishing butter that you could leave out if you wished. I’d pair it with mashed potatoes for a festive occasion, or perhaps boiled potatoes for a weeknight, either one would let you soak up that sauce. Roast Pork Tenderloin with Blood Oranges is bright and comforting, just the thing for winter.
Roast Pork Tenderloin with Blood Oranges
- 1 Meat Thermometer The ThermoPop from ThermoWorks gives a quick read, helpful for this dish (affiliate link)
- 1 Roasting dish, small
- 1 Sauce pan, small
For the Marinade
- ⅓ cup blood orange juice, fresh squeezed 2-3 blood oranges
- 2 tbsp honey
- 1 sprig rosemary, cut in half
- 1 sprig thyme, cut in half
- 2 sprigs flat-leaf Italian parsley
- 1 clove garlic, crushed to taste, if cloves are small, use 2
- 1 1 ¼ lb pork tenderloin weight is approximate
- 1 tbsp neutral oil
- kosher salt
- 8 black pepper corns, cracked to taste
To Roast and Serve
- 1 tsp neutral oil
- 1 blood orange, sliced
- reserved marinade
- 1 pat unsalted butter, cold optional, but recommended
Marinate the Pork Tenderloin
- Add the honey to the blood orange juice and mix to combine⅓ cup blood orange juice, fresh squeezed, 2 tbsp honey
- Season the pork tenderloin generously with kosher salt on all sides. Add the cracked pepper and drizzle with the oil. Using your hands, spread the oil and pepper on the meat1 tbsp neutral oil, kosher salt, 8 black pepper corns, cracked, 1 1 ¼ lb pork tenderloin
- Add the pork tenderloin to a large resealable plastic bag. Add the blood orange juice and honey mixture. Add the herbs and garlic. Seal the bag, and mix thoroughly to combine1 sprig rosemary, cut in half, 1 sprig thyme, cut in half, 1 clove garlic, crushed, 2 sprigs flat-leaf Italian parsley
- Marinate the pork tenderloin in the refrigerator for at least 2, but preferably 3–4 hours (see instruction below about when to remove from the fridge)
Roast the Tenderloin
- About 30 minutes before you want to start cooking, remove the marinated pork tenderloin from the refrigerator, but leave it in the bag
- Preheat oven to 400F
- When ready to roast the tenderloin, remove the tenderloin from the marinade (reserve the marinade!) and pat dry with paper towels
- In a roasting dish, add the oil, and spread to coat the pan. Add the tenderloin to the dish1 tsp neutral oil
- Strain the marinade into a sauce panreserved marinade
- Retrieve the rosemary and thyme and lay them on top of the tenderloin. Retrieve the garlic and tuck the pieces around the tenderloin so that they are reasonably evenly spaced
- Lay the orange slices on top of the tenderloin and herbs, evenly spaced1 blood orange, sliced
- Roast the tenderloin on the middle rack of the oven for about 20-25 minutes, until the internal temperature in the thickest part reaches 145F. About halfway through cook time, check the temperature with a meat thermometer to help gauge cook time. It's a good idea to turn the pan to help ensure even cooking. Keep an eye on the roast to make sure that it doesn't overcook
- Remove from oven and let rest for 10 minutes before serving
Make the Sauce
- In the small sauce pan where you strained the marinade, bring the marinade to a boil over medium-high heat, and reduce, stirring constantly, until the liquid has reduced by about half
- Remove from heat. Add pat of cold butter to enrich the sauce and whisk constantly to combine. Set aside until serving (if necessary, can heat very slowly)1 pat unsalted butter, cold
- To serve, cut into thick slices (the middle will be the most tender). Plate by pouring the sauce over the slices and garnishing with slices of blood orange from the roast