Say the word “lean” and chances are you’ll think of beef, chicken or fish, but rarely pork.
If you know how to choose the right cut, there’s no reason to steer clear of “the other white meat.” Yet only 24 percent of Americans know pork is a lean source of protein, according to a recent consumer survey conducted for the National Pork Board.
Six cuts qualify as “slim,” including the pork tenderloin featured in The Star’s Grilled Tenderloin and Mushrooms with Red Pepper Coulis.
Other cuts to look for: pork boneless top loin chop, pork top loin roast (boneless), pork center loin chop, pork center rib chop and pork sirloin roasts (bone-in).
Enjoy lean pork with earthy portabellas topped with an antioxidant-rich red pepper coulis — that’s a fancy name you’ve probably seen on high-end restaurant menus that means a thick puree or sauce.
Make-ahead tip: Red pepper coulis is great over any grilled meat, chicken or fish. It may be frozen, if desired.
and Mushrooms with
Red Pepper Coulis
Makes 6 servings
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 pork tenderloin, about 1 pound
2 tablespoons red wine
2 whole portabella mushrooms, sliced about 3/4 inch thick
18 to 24 leafy salad greens, such as arugula, watercress or spinach leaves, rinsed and patted dry
1 to 1 1/4 cups red pepper coulis
Combine olive oil, garlic, salt and pepper. Measure out 1 tablespoon oil mixture and rub over pork tenderloin, covering evenly.
Stir red wine into remaining oil mixture. Place mushroom slices in zip-top plastic bag. Pour wine-oil mixture over all; seal and shake gently to coat.
Preheat grill or allow coals to burn down to white ash. Grill pork over direct heat, turning frequently to cook evenly, 15 to 20 minutes or until meat thermometer registers 160 degrees. Cover and allow to stand 5 to 10 minutes, then slice into 1-inch slices.
Drain the mushrooms; grill over direct heat 3 to 4 minutes per side or until lightly browned.
To serve, arrange a bed of greens (3 to 4 leaves) on each plate. Arrange mushroom slices over greens. Place meat over mushrooms. Drizzle 3 to 4 tablespoons red pepper coulis over each serving. Pass remaining sauce.
Red pepper coulis
Makes about 2 1/4 cups
1 (12-ounce) jar roasted red peppers, rinsed and drained
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 cup finely chopped sweet onion
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup red wine
Freshly ground pepper
1 cup reduced-sodium beef broth
1 tablespoon cornstarch
Place drained roasted red peppers in work bowl of food processor; process until smooth. Add tomato paste and process to combine.
Melt butter in saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and garlic and cook, stirring frequently, until onion is tender. Stir in red pepper puree, wine, sugar and pepper. Combine broth and cornstarch, stirring until completely blended; pour broth mixture into red pepper mixture. Cook, uncovered, over medium-low heat 20 to 25 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Per serving (pork and coulis): 185 calories (39 percent from fat), 8 grams total fat (2 grams saturated), 52 milligrams cholesterol, 8 grams carbohydrates, 18 grams protein, 199 milligrams sodium, 2 grams fiber.
Recipes developed for The Star by professional home economists Kathryn Moore and Roxanne Wyss.