Pork and Prune Casserole
If you’re looking for something a little special to serve as the nights start to get colder, you need look no further than this rich, herb-infused recipe for pork tenderloin with prunes and port wine. For such a special dish, you’ll find this casserole surprisingly easy to make. Once you’ve put the fried-up ingredients in the oven you can sit back and relax whilst the wonderful sweet and savory aromas of the casserole drift through the house.
- Pork loin (trimmed of fat) 3 lb.
- Olive oil 1 tbsp
- Butter 1 tbsp
- Bacon (or thin slices of ham) 2 rashers
- Shallots 8-10 small
- Garlic (crushed) 2 cloves
- Leeks (trimmed and chopped) 2
- Dried pitted prunes (do make sure all stones have been removed) ½ lb.
- Port wine 300 ml
- Chicken stock 200 ml
- Fresh thyme 2 tbsp
- Bay leaves 2
- Fresh parsley 1 tbsp
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- Pre-heat oven to 350⁰ F.
- Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan or skillet and fry the pork loin until browned on all sides. This should take between 4 and 8 minutes. Remove the meat from the pan and set aside.
- Add the butter to the pan and when hot add the peeled shallots and chopped bacon slices. Fry until golden then add the crushed garlic and leeks. Continue frying until soft but not burnt.
- Remove vegetables from the pan and de-glaze the pan by pouring in the port wine and stirring with a wooden spoon over a medium heat until all the impurities have been removed from the side of the pan and blended into the port. Now add back the meat and vegetables to the pan. Add the pitted prunes, the stock, the fresh, chopped thyme and the whole bay leaves.
- Bring to simmering point, season with salt and pepper. Cover the casserole with a firm lid and place in the pre-heated oven for 90 minutes.
- Remove and discard the bay leaves. Remove 8 of the prunes. Puree these and then add the pureed prunes back to the dish. Slice the meat into potion-sized rings and serve with the sauce spooned over, sprinkled with the fresh, chopped parsley.
- This dish goes wonderfully with pureed potatoes, beans, green vegetables or carrots.
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