Pork Tenderloin Medallions in Sherry-Mushroom Sauce

During the winter time, I frequently resort to traditional German dishes from my childhood which I perceive as specifically warming and soothing during the cold and dark days. This is another recipe for one of those dishes. I associate it with stopping off at an „Ausflugslokal“ offering „gutbürgerliche“ cuisine (which probably best translates as „country-side inn“ with „plain cooking“) after a long winter walk that made your ears and toes hurt from frost-bite, or seemingly endless afternoons spent at family gatherings.

A splash of sherry and green peppercorns preserved in brine are used to add a little extra layer of flavor to the otherwise rich and saucy dish. Don’t be shy to use sauce binder to thicken the gravy although you might have more sophisticated tricks up your sleeve – German sauce-making doesn’t 😀

Goes well with a side of pasta, spaetzle or potatoes and roasted vegetables.

Sanni

Ingredients:

  • One pork tenderloin (ca. 400 to 500 grams)
  • freshly ground pepper, salt
  • 1 tablespoon concentrated butter (or 1 tablespoon vegetable oil and 1 tablespoon of butter)
  • 1 yellow onion, sliced
  • 150 grams of chestnut mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
  • ca. 75 ml of sherry
  • 500 ml of meat stock
  • 1 fresh bay leaf (or 2 dried bay leaves)
  • 5 juniper berries
  • sauce binder
  • 150 grams of saure sahne (alternatively, smetana or low-fat crème fraîche)
  • 2 to 3 teaspoons of fresh green peppercorns in brine
  • For serving: a sprinkling of chopped chives

Preparation:

  1. Cut the tenderloin into ca. 5 cm thick slices. Place with the cut-side up on the cutting board and slightly press down to flatten it.
  2. Season with freshly ground pepper and salt from both sides.
  3. Melt the concentrated butter in a large and deep frying pan over medium heat. Sear the medallions from both sides for approximately 1 minute on each side. Remove from the pan and set aside.
  4. Reduce the temperature to low to medium.
  5. Fry the onion in the same fat used for frying the pork medallions for 1 to 2 minutes. Add the mushrooms and fry for approximately 5 minutes.
  6. Deglaze with the sherry and let it reduce to approximately 1/3.
  7. Add the meat stock, the bay leaf and juniper berries. Season with more freshly ground pepper and salt.
  8. Add the medallions, cover and let simmer for approximately 30 to 40 minutes.
  9. At the end of the cooking time, remove the medallions again, and discard the bay leaf and juniper berries.
  10. Thicken the sauce with sauce binder to the consistency that you like.
  11. Add the saure sahne and whisk till smooth.
  12. Add the green peppercorns.
  13. Place the medallions in the sauce again and warm through.
  14. Serve sprinkled with chives.

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