Recipe of the week: Pork tenderloin: Perfect for grilling, indoors or out
Francis Mallmann, the renowned chef from Argentina, shows how the effect of cooking with an open fire can be achieved indoors.
Francis Mallmann grew up with fire. In Seven Fires: Grilling the Argentine Way (Artisan), the renowned chef, who oversees two restaurants in Argentina and another in Uruguay, admits that cooking with an open fire is sometimes not practical. Yet the same effect can be achieved indoors—so long as an equal amount of heat is applied to the food.
Recipe of the weekPork Tenderloin With Burnt Brown Sugar, Orange Confit, and Thyme
2 pork tenderloins, about 1 pound each6 pieces orange confit, about 2 inches long, plus 2 tbsp oil from the confit2 tbsp fresh thyme leaves1 tbsp coarse salt, or to taste3 tbsp light brown sugar
Lay pork tenderloins on work surface. Tear orange confit into ½-inch pieces; scatter over top of meat. Sprinkle with thyme and half the salt; sprinkle brown sugar on top; pat it down firmly with hand. Drizzle with oil from orange confit. Heat a chapa, or large square or rectangular cast-iron griddle, over medium heat until drop of water sizzles on surface. Using wide spatula, lift each pork tenderloin and invert it, sugar side down, onto hot surface. Cook them, without moving, for 5 minutes. If sugar begins to smell unpleasantly burned, adjust heat by moving griddle and/or lowering flame. When sugar side is well browned, turn tenderloins and cook, turning to sear on all sides, for 10 to 15 minutes more, or until done to taste. The internal temperature should be 135 degrees for rosy pink. Transfer meat to carving board; allow to rest, tented loosely with foil, for 10 minutes before slicing. Season to taste with remaining salt and serve. Serves 6.
Orange Confit4 oranges3 bay leaves12 black peppercornsAbout 2¼ cups extra-virgin olive oil¾ cup dry white wine1 tsp coarse salt
Cut oranges in half. Squeeze juice; reserve it for another use. Put squeezed orange halves in large saucepan; add bay leaves, peppercorns, 3 tbsp olive oil, white wine, salt. Add enough water to completely cover oranges; bring to boil. Reduce heat; cook until orange peel is tender, about 25 minutes. Remove from heat; allow to cool in liquid.
Drain oranges; tear peel into rough strips about 1 inch wide. Place strip of orange peel skin side down on work surface and, using very sharp paring knife, scrape away every bit of white pith, leaving only orange zest. Repeat with remaining peel. Put strips of orange zest in small container; cover completely with olive oil. Confit will keep tightly covered in refrigerator for at least a week.