PORK TENDERLOIN WITH PANCETTA & SAGE
Tana's Kitchen Secrets
by Tana Ramsay
This dish looks very fancy, wrapped in its pancetta jacket, but it's beautifully simple to make. Accompanied by polenta and a dressed arugula salad, it is smart enough to serve at any supper party. Or have it as a romantic meal for two, any leftovers are delicious cold.
Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 30 minutes
Can be made in advance to end of step 3
Suitable for freezing
• 12 pancetta strips, or bacon
• sea salt and black pepper
• 12 small sage leaves
• 11½ oz pork tenderloin
• 1 tbsp olive oil
1. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
2. Cover the surface of your chopping board with a layer of plastic wrap, then lay out the pancetta strips, slightly overlapping each other. Season well with pepper, then put a sage leaf on each strip. Place the pork on top, at a right angle to the pancetta strips, season with salt and pepper, then lift up the plastic wrap to roll the loin in pancetta. Remove the plastic wrap.
3. Tear a piece of aluminum foil big enough to wrap the loin and season the foil with salt and pepper. Place the pork on the foil, then turn it through the seasoning. Tightly roll up the foil around the meat, twisting each end to seal. Cut off any excess foil.
4. Place the foil parcel in the oven for 15 minutes, then remove and leave until cool enough to handle. Turn the oven up to 400°F.
5. Remove the foil, place the loin on a baking sheet and sprinkle with oil. Return it to the oven for 10 minutes, or until the loin is cooked and the pancetta is crisp.
Making pork loin juicy:
Pork tenderloin is a relatively expensive cut, as it is very lean. However, being lean also makes it prone to drying out and turning to dust in the mouth unless treated with care. Wrapping the loin in pancetta, as in this recipe, will solve the problem and result in succulent, juicy meat. Bacon does the same job, if you can't find pancetta.