Recipe: Pork Cutlets with Mediterranean Salsa

As a personal chef, I often find myself with some miscellaneous herbs and veggies on my hands toward the end of a busy week.   A couple of sprigs of parsley or basil, half a zucchini, maybe some spinach.  Two great go-to recipes to use them up are always salsa or an omelet/frittata.   I was already defrosting some pork tenderloin for dinner and just had a Mexican-themed dinner last night so I tried a different take on a salsa.  This would also be great with chicken breast if you’re not a pork fan.  I wished I’d taken a photo of it but we were hungry and devoured it immediately.  Definitely will be adding this to the dinner rotation!

Pork Cutlets with Mediterranean Salsa  (Serves 2)

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup chopped, fresh parsley
  • 1/4 cup chopped, fresh basil
  • 12 kalamata olives, diced
  • 4 artichoke hearts, diced
  • 2 T chopped red onion
  • 1 baby zucchini, finely chopped
  • 1 cup chopped grape tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup crumbled feta
  • Salt, pepper to taste
  • 12 ounces pork tenderloin, sliced and pounded into 1/4″ thick cutlets
  • Flour, for dredging pork
  • 1 T olive oil
  • Juice of half a lemon

Combine first eight ingredients (parsley through feta), season with salt and pepper and let sit at room temperature for about an hour.   Season the pork cutlets with salt & pepper and dredge in flour, shaking to remove the excess. Heat a large skillet of medium-high heat, add the olive oil and brown pork until cooked through, 2-3 minutes on each side.  Remove from the pan and turn off the heat under the skillet.  Add the salsa mixture and stir to deglaze the pan.  It doesn’t need to be cooked, just warmed through.  Spoon over cutlets, drizzle with lemon juice and serve.

I served this with basmati rice (for my husband, none for me and didn’t miss it) and steamed green beans.

January 9, 2014Permalink

Meatless Monday

After a holiday season of excess food and drink (although is there really a chance of there being *too much* food and drink?), we decided to try to eat clean for awhile to get back on track.  While my husband and I are admittedly carnivorous, we are open to the idea of a couple of vegetarian days every week.  I realized I technically blew it since I had to taste test the dishes I made for my personal chef client today, including a couple of Swedish meatballs (one to taste, a second to double-check that they were as yummy as I thought).  But I resumed the effort with dinner and made a dish that was both delicious and satisfying – important since the temperature was already in the single digits at sundown.

This is a take on a salad I make for another client from a Food & Wine recipe (Goat Cheese, Lentil and Potato Salad).   It’s a very simple dish and open to adaptation based on what you happen to have on hand.  Preheat the oven to 400F and gather whatever veggies you have on hand that can be roasted.  I used a sweet onion, baby carrots and some baby Yukon Gold potatoes.  Lots of other veggies would be good, too – cauliflower, asparagus, brussels sprouts.  Or root vegetables like beets, parsnips, turnips.  Anyway, I digress.  Cut the veggies into relatively uniform slices and place in a glass baking dish (I think the one I used was a Pyrex 11″ x 7″ one), drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.  Roast uncovered in the oven for 20-25 minutes or until the veggies are starting to brown and caramelize.  Remove from the oven and add 1 cup of lentils (I used French green lentils but other varieties are fine – you might need to adjust the cooking time) and 2 cups hot water.  Cover tightly with aluminum foil and pop it back in the oven for 45-60 minutes.  I checked mine at 45 and the lentils were soft without having lost their texture and I finished it uncovered for 5-10 more minutes.

I served it over a bed of sautéed baby kale and red onion, topped with some crumbled goat cheese (don’t skip this part and use a soft cheese since it adds a delicious creaminess to the dish), and drizzled it with some balsamic and a little olive oil.  We both thoroughly enjoyed it and I’m pretty sure it will come up on the weekly menu at least a couple of times a month.  It made 4 servings with the 1 cup of lentils so I’ll freeze the other half for another dinner in a week or two.  Leftovers would also make a great packed lunch!

Hope you’re enjoying your Monday!

January 6, 2014Permalink