Pork Tenderloin with Roasted Grapes
A warm and jammy sauce made with roasted grapes, jalapeno peppers, shallots, and ginger! Perfect for pork tenderloin.
Mild in taste, pork tenderloin is like a tried and true friend. Dependable, it will adapt to whatever flavors you putting together. Friendly, it is often an ingredient in many different ethnic cuisines. It can be as fancy or as every day as you want. Just don't cross it - if you cook it too long, it will be dry.
Big, huge, aptly named globe grapes are the star of this recipe. You can use any grape you prefer, but make sure it is seedless. Roasting the grapes releases some of the juice but also intensifies the flavor and the sweetness.
The natural sugars of the grapes will thicken and start to caramelize. The flesh of the fruit will start to collapse while roasting.
Intensity of sweetness
I like to intensify the sweetness of the grapes by pairing them with a spicy component, jalapeno peppers. Technically a fruit, the brightness of a jalapeno pepper is a complement to the roasted grapes. The peppery kick gives a lovely sweet/spicy personality to the roasted fruit. You can adjust the spice level to your liking by altering the number of sliced jalapeno peppers you add to the grapes.
Shallots are another roasty and sweet ingredient. Just like the grapes, the sugars concentrate as the shallots roast. They will also add to the jammy texture since shallots will lose their structure.
Lastly, minced ginger will bring a little heat and a slightly sweet punch to the melange. It is an interesting, almost pungent flavor to add to the overall profile of the recipe.
Ease of preparation
One of the best attributes of this recipe is the ease of preparation. Two pans are needed - a skillet (cast iron if you have one) and a sheet pan. The sugars will burn and crust on the sheet pan, making clean up a pain. Instead, line the sheet pan with foil before roasting the fruit and vegetables. With the aluminum foil lining the pan, you can pour the roasted fruit and vegetables and their juices into the skillet. This will deglaze all the nice crusty bits off the bottom of the pan left from browning the pork tenderloin.
When the fruit and vegetables are poured into the skillet, remove the aluminum foil, Put the browned pork tenderloin on the sheet pan, and place it in the oven to finish cooking. It only takes about 8-10 minutes for the pork to finish roasting. It helps to have an instant-read thermometer to check the internal temperature. The pork should only cook until 140 degrees, for medium-rare. There will be carry-over cooking as the pork rests, which it needs to do for about 10 minutes.
While the pork is roasting and resting, you can simultaneously finish the sauce. Add the wine to the skillet and let the sauce reduce. The juices will thicken a bit due to the sugar of the fruit. Adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper.
This beauty of a meal looks very special on a platter, with the sliced pork tenderloin nestled in the roasted grape sauce. I like to serve pecan rice with the meal and use plenty of sauce.
Fancy or EveryDay Meal
This Pork Tenderloin with Roasted Grapes recipe doesn't require a lot of prep work but will look like it did. Perfect for that fancy dinner that you need to repay to your good friends. Everyone will think you have been hard at work in the kitchen. But equally perfect for a cozy, weeknight meal with your family.
Pork Tenderloin with Roasted Grapes
- cast iron or heavy skillet
- 2 sheet pans
- 2 cups red grapes preferably big, such as globe, 12 ounces
- 1 cup shallots sliced, about 3 large, 4 ounces
- ½ cup jalapeno pepper sliced, 1 large, 2 ounces
- 1 teaspoon ginger minced
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 ½ pounds pork tenderloin
- salt and pepper
- ½ cup white wine
Assemble fruit and vegetables
- Preheat oven to 425°.
- Line a sheet pan with aluminum foil. The juices of the grapes will be sticky. The foil makes it much easier to remove the fruit.
- Place the grapes, sliced jalapeno peppers, and shallots on the sheet pan. Toss with 1 tablespoon of olive oil, ginger, and salt and pepper.
- Place the sheet pan in the preheated oven. After 10 minutes, take the pan out of the oven and toss the vegetables and grapes. Place back in the oven for another 10 minutes. Remove from oven after a total of 20 minutes cooking time.
Sear the pork tenderloin
- Salt and pepper the pork tenderloin.
- After the vegetables and grapes are placed in the oven, place the skillet over a medium-high flame. Add 1 tablespoon of olive oil to pan.
- Once the oil is hot, add the pork tenderloin to the skillet. Sear for 5 minutes.
- Turn the pork tenderloin over and sear for another 4 minutes.
- Take the pork tenderloin out of the skillet and place it on a sheet pan. Put the sheet pan in the oven to finish cooking. Remove after 10 minutes. The internal temperature of the pork should be 140° for medium-rare when taken out of the oven. Let the meat rest for 10 minutes. There will be carry-over cooking so the temperature of the meat will rise another 5 degrees.
- After the grapes and vegetables have roasted for 20 minutes in the oven, remove. While the pork is in the oven, pour the grapes, vegetables, and accumulated juices in the skillet. With the heat at medium-high, add ½ cup of white wine to deglaze the bottom of the skillet. Let the sauce reduce for 3-5 minutes. Adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper.
- After the pork has rested, slice into pieces. Serve with the roasted grapes and sauce.
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