Holiday Meals: Pork Wellington and a Roasted Grape Sauce
Not many good things come out of being home sick over the holidays, but this pork wellington is one of them.
My husband and I have been married for 17 years and even though we don't have children, Christmas is one of our favorite days of the year.
The holidays make us goofy.
We spend a decent amount of time on finding or making presents, but we spend as much time working on riddles for the accompanying card.
A card from my husband: “Sort of like a double shot of fantastical warm milk and honey.” Present: The remastered CD of “Double Fantasy” by John Lennon.
A card for my husband: “Lebhaftlange und erweitern sich.” He doesn't speak German. But, in the card I told him to go to Babel Fish language translator and type in the Germanic phrase. When he did that he saw that it meant, “Live long and prosper” His present: The first season of Star Trek on DVD.
What we lack in money, we make up for in silliness.
But, last year we both were sick over Christmas, so we couldn't go to our annual family Christmas dinner. However, I was feeling perverse, and I didn't want the fact that we both had continual sneezes and low-grade fevers to keep us from having a good meal.
I needed to look at and eat something pretty.
We had some left over puff pastry in the freezer from a party that we had thrown a couple of weeks earlier, and we also had a pork tenderloin in the refrigerator. And we always have grapes, because I like fruit in the morning for breakfast.
Then this recipe just kind of created itself from the ingredients we had around. And this dish turned out so well that we've decided to make it a tradition – just like goofy clues on a Christmas present.
Pork Wellington with Roasted Grape Sauce
1 pork tenderloin
1 sheet of puff pastry (thawed at room temperature for an hour)
1/3rd of a cup of dijon mustard
2 teaspoons of paprika
3 tablespoons of olive oil
Salt and pepper
1 tablespoon of water
For the sauce:
2 cups of red or white grapes
2 tablespoons of olive oil
Salt and pepper
½ of a small red onion, finely diced
1 tablespoon of flour
½ cup of white wine
½ cup of chicken broth
3 teaspoons of fresh thyme
Place a large sheet pan in the oven, and preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
In a large frying pan heat the olive oil until hot but not smoking. Mix the dijon and paprika together. Cut the silver skin off of the pork tenderloin and rub it all over with the dijon mixture. Sear the pork on all sides, adding salt and pepper each time you turn it. Remove the pork from the pan and then lightly pat with paper towels. Place the pork in the middle of the puff pastry and bring the sides together. Crimp the ends of the puff pastry to seal. Mix together the egg and water and lightly brush the mixture all over the wellington.
Pull the hot pan out of the oven and gently place the wellington on it. Bake for 35 minutes or until the pastry is golden brown and the inside of the meat registers at least 145 degrees. Lightly tent with foil for at least 5 minutes.
While the pork is baking start the grape sauce. On a rimmed sheet pan, lay down some parchment paper and place the grapes on it. Add the olive oil, salt and pepper and stir well to combine. Bake for 25 minutes or until the grapes are completely soft. Add the onion to the frying pan that you seared the pork in. Lightly saute until the onions are soft and then add the flour. Stir for 1 minute. Add the grapes and then use potato masher break them down. Add the wine, thyme and chicken stock. Bring to a light boil and then reduce the heat to low and let the sauce thicken for 10 minutes.
Serve the sauce on the wellington.
Serves 4. (Or 2 with leftovers.)