Don’t be put off or dismayed by the title of this recipe. The truth is I am running out of cute-and-clever alliterations for the titles of my dishes. The meat is pork. The sauce is pink. (And pink in a way that screams all of kinds of scrumptious.)
I allowed myself the luxury of a dollop of sour cream in the sauce by trading mashed potatoes (that would go superbly with this pork) for a green salad instead. So while this sauce is (shock-horror) ‘creamy’ – let’s not get our panties in a twist. This bargain I made with myself was to lose an accompaying carb, use no other fat in the sauce-making and take advantage of lean pork fillets. Then I can enjoy a bit of cream – guilt-free. This is something I am often found doing. (Because I am a grown up and I can do as I please). Also, pork is a healthy choice. Contrary to what you may think, a trimmed pork fillet is remarkably low in fat as most pork fat is on the surface of the meat – not running throughout the meat, like in the case of beef.
I absolutely love this dish, and I know without a shadow of a doubt that you will too! It’s superb, so easy – and the flavour of this heavenly sauce is sophisticated enough for this to be your next dinner party dish. Enjoy – and please let me know how it goes!
Pork in Pink Sauce – serves 4-5
2 Pork fillets – trimmed of fat and sinew
1 TB Crushed Garlic
1 Tin Crushed tomatoes
½ Cup Fresh Basil – chopped
½ Cup Chicken Stock (I used Ina Paarman)
½ Cup Sour Cream
Ensure that your oven is preheating to 210deg C.
Start off by cleaning your leeks. The easiest way to do this is to slice them lengthways and run them under running water as you bend the stalks so that all the layers are rinsed. Chop them finely and set aside.
In a saucepan, soften the leeks gently in a little water on a medium heat. You don’t need to fry them in oil, this works just as good, and think of all the calories you are saving! Add the tin of tomatoes, basil and chicken stock – and bring to the boil. As soon as it has been brought to the boil – reduce it to a simmer and continuously stir.
I always do the sauce first, so that once it is simmering on its own – I can start the pork.
Once you are happy that all the fat and sinew is trimmed from your 2 pork fillets – season well with salt and pepper and then heat a non-stick pan on high, colouring the fillets on all sides. It is not necessary to add oil to the non-stick pan, the little bit of fat that may remain on the pork will suffice.
NOTE: I almost accidentally bought ‘smoked’ pork fillets. This is NOT what you want. You want regular, fresh pork fillets.
Only one fillet is pictured here, but the recipe does call for two.
NOTE: Sorry to interrupt but there is no truth in the fact that searing meat before making a stew / roast etc actually “seals in the juices”. It does NOT seal in the juices; you can google this old wives tale. The only reason I do it, is because I like the colour it gets on it, so be sure not to over-cook when frying-for-colour.
Once this is done, transfer to a baking dish and pop into the preheated oven for 12-13 minutes.
Remove the pork from the oven and place tin foil over it to let it rest for 7-10 minutes before slicing it. You DON’T want to slice it as soon as it comes out from the oven as the juices will run out. Letting roasted meats ‘rest’ like this is pretty standard procedure and it ensures the meat remains moist, but you must also remember that it does carry on cooking ever-so-slightly. If you are paranoid about how cooked it is – use a meat thermometer. Medium pork should reach about 72deg C. And medium is how you want your pork. Succulent and delicious. Because of the lack of fat in pork fillets , over-cooking them WILL dry them.
NOTE: Also, to bust another of Ouma’s Kitchen Myths, you don’t have to cook pork as thoroughly as chicken. Chicken needs to be nuked until there is no trace of pink in it. With pork – you can get away with a succulent medium. Your grandmother won’t agree with us modern-day chefs, but nowadays, a medium piece of pork is completely safe to eat granted you trust your supplier. True story.
By now, the sauce would have cooked out all it’s juices, so while your pork is resting, stir in a half cup of sour cream to the mix. This recipe serves 4-5 people so technically this is a mere 2TB each – nothing to lose sleep over (and think about how we cut fat out of all our other procedures). So don’t think – just pour.
You want to gently heat the cream in the sauce, not bring it to a boil (as the sauce may split and become ‘grainy’)
The sauce is ready when it is thick and creamy. Taste for seasoning.
While the sauce is gently heating through, slice the pork.
Serve the pork medallions on a bed of sauce (or the other way around) and pretty your plate up with a crunchy green salad.
Of course, if you are entertaining guests with this dish, serve on mashed potatoes and lose the salad (… else you may lose your friends.)