Tuscan Pork Loin in Herb Bread

April 20, 2016

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This dish is just a gem to have in your repertoire. It might be in the top three for my favorite recipes I’ve ever posted. If it looks rustic and heavenly in these pics, that’s because it is. 

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It is also a testament to how some things are worth the wait. I first tore this idea out of a magazine years ago, and kept it in my trusty binder of recipes (it was before Pinterest, that’s how long ago it was! But I still love my binder of magical recipes.) The article was on a Tuscan cooking class by the Divina Cuccina, which just sounds like Heaven, right? For those of us who can’t hop on a plane and head over there, this dish is the next best thing.

When the recipe somehow disappeared from my binder, I took to the internet to search for it. Happily I found a new blog to obsess over in the process. But most importantly, I found this long lost recipe.

I love this dish because it is so easy, but it is perfect for any occasion and makes it special. A party, a picnic, the beach, a random Tuesday night (which is when I made it!). It has huge flavor thanks to these: 

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It is so easy to just sear the pork tenderloin and then lay it in the flavored baguette. The magazine article I read said to tie it with cooking twine, so that is how I did it. The Italian Dish says to wrap it in aluminum foil. I’m not sure it’s going to matter because the end result is this soft, fragrant garlic bread that is very moist, and pork that has been so infused with flavor from the lemon, garlic and herbs.  I have to say I really loved the crunchiness of the bread on the outside contrasted with the chewiness on the inside, so I like it with the twine. (It also made for fantastic leftovers, and since the bread was like herb croutons, it was delicious on a salad for lunch the next day.)  But I might try it in foil next time and see.

Side note: one of my favorite things at holiday parties is eating filet of beef with garlic bread, so I think this whole operation could be done with a beef tenderloin and some garlic bread. Just saying.

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If you do check out the Italian Dish site, notice that she has a link to her baguette recipe which she just whipped up before making this dish. Do not let that distract you or make you think you’re not worthy. You are. It is just fine to do this the easy way and pick up a baguette. I actually love that this has such simple ingredients, you can keep a pork tenderloin and a baguette in your freezer and defrost the night before so you always have it on hand.

Ok, go forth and make this and fit it into your summer repertoire. You will thank me, I promise!

Tuscan Roast Pork in a Baguette

The size of the baguette and pork tenderloin don’t have to match exactly. You will be trimming off the ends of the baguette to fit the meat.

Ingredients:

  • 1 small baguette
  • 1 large clove garlic
  • 1 large rosemary sprig
  • 1 large sage leaf sprig
  • 1 teaspoon course sea salt
  • 2 springs flat leaf parsley
  • 1 lemon, zested
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 pork tenderloin
  • freshly ground pepper

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 375° F.

Cut the baguette in half, lengthwise.  Scoop out some of the soft insides (you can use these for bread crumbs for a later use).  Set aside.

Strip leaves off rosemary and sage sprigs.  Place the garlic, herb leaves, sea salt, parsley and lemon zest on a cutting board and chop everything up finely.  

Heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in a large fry pan over medium high heat.  Season the pork tenderloin well with freshly ground pepper. Sear the pork on all sides in the pan and remove after you have a nice crust formed all over.  

Brush the remaining olive oil, 2 tablespoons, onto the inside of the baguette halves.  Sprinkle the herb mixture on top of the olive oil. Place the pork tenderloin on the bottom half of the baguette, place the top half of the baguette on top of the pork and cut off any overhanging bread on the ends.  Wrap the baguette up tightly in aluminum foil or tie in cooking twine and place on a baking sheet.

Bake for 45-55 minutes and remove.  Let rest for about 10 minutes.  Remove foil or ties and slice.

Recipe is origionally from Judy Witts and was adapted on www.theitaliandish.com

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