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Perfect Valentine’s Day Dinner

As I explained in my Valentine’s post last year, I am a big believer in staying in on the big V-day. It’s the perfect time of year to cozy up on the couch with your lover, your cat, your roommates, your SATC dvd’s, whomever–and relax. And, surprise surprise, I suggest relaxing with some pig-meat and booze: Pan-seared pork tenderloin in a cranberry, rosemary, and citrus scented red wine reduction. CLASSY!


But really, this dish is divine–intensely flavorful without being too rich, decadent but not overly expensive, deceptively simple and easy to make, and just so darn pretty!

You’ll need:

1. Pork tenderloin, around 1 lb

2. 1/2 yellow onion, chopped

3.  2 cloves garlic, minced

4. 1 cup dried unsweetened cranberries

5. 2 cups good red wine (whatever you have on hand and like to drink)

6. 3-4 sprigs fresh rosemary (tip: use kitchen scissors to quickly and finely cut)

7. 1 tbsp orange zest (I used a clementine, because that’s what I had on hand)

8. 1/4 cup brown sugar

Olive oil, salt and pepper


1. Preheat oven to 375 degree. Heat a couple glugs of olive oil in large pan until shimmering but not smoking.

2. Pat dry the tenderloin, and generously salt and pepper. Drop into the very hot pan, searing on each side for about 1 minute. Transfer to foil lined baking pan. Tent with foil and roast in oven for 15 minutes. Meanwhile…

3. In the same pan you seared the tenderloin, cook the chopped onion and garlic until beginning to brown.

4. Add the wine, brown sugar, cranberries, rosemary and orange zest, scraping the bottom of the pan to get the stuck bits of meat and onions up. Continue to simmer until the meat comes out of the oven.

5. Remove the tenderloin from the oven and let rest for 2-3 minutes. Add the tenderloin and its juices to the pan with the wine, and baste the meat while continuing to cook for another 2-3 minutes.

6. Serve meat with generous heaping of cranberry chutney and sauce.






Do you have plans for February 14th?




About chicsmarts

favorite curiosities: taxidermy, dia de los muertos, teacups, bbq, general oddities, three tier cakes, and anything that sparkles.

One response »

  1. those cookies were fabulous. I also experimented with other choc bars I had around, white choc chips and dark choc ones were also a very good combo.


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