Passion for Pork

Recipe: Pork Tenderloin Medallions & Braised Cheek

Sharman - Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Each year at Christmas in November, the Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge‘s Executive Chef Christopher Chafe shares his passion for pork through a variety of Alberta Pork dishes. From the opening reception featuring a pig roast, to glazed ham at the farewell brunch – a beautiful bite of pork is never far away during each of the three night packages.

For the past few years, Alberta Pork has proudly sponsored the Gala Night dinner. This year, chef Chafe and his team treated guests to Alberta pork served two ways. Tenderloin medallions and braised pork cheeks were served alongside carrot and curry squash puree, queen violet fingerlings, clamshell mushrooms and twin meadow’s zucchini and a tarragon mustard jus – proving just how lovely pork can be for your feature holiday meal.

Alberta Pork Tenderloin Medallions & Braised Cheek

8 – 3 oz Alberta pork tenderloin medallions
8 – 3 oz Alberta pork cheeks
3 cups dark stock: chicken or pork or veal
1 cup dry red wine
1 small onion, chopped into 1 inch pieces
1 small carrot, chopped into 1 inch pieces
1 rib of celery, chopped into 1 inch pieces
4 cloves garlic
1 sprig of thyme
1 sprig of rosemary
5 tbsp canola oil
to taste – salt and pepper

Pork Cheeks
Season pork cheeks with salt and pepper. Lightly coat the cheeks with approximately 1 tablespoon of canola oil. Sear in a heavy bottom sauce pot until nicely browned on all sides. Remove the cheeks from the pain. Add in the carrot, celery, onion and garlic. Saute until nicely browned but not burnt. Deglaze the pan with red wine and reduce by half.

Add the stock and bring to a simmer. Add the pork cheeks and fresh herbs. Cover with an oven-proof lid or wrap with foil. Place into a 300F oven and cook for approximately 2.5 hours, or until cheeks are tender when pierced with a small knife. Remove cheeks and allow to cool.

Can be made ahead and kept warm or reheated. Reserve braising liquid to make the tarragon mustard jus (recipe below).

Pork Tenderloin Medallions

Heat a heavy bottomed saute pan to medium high heat. Season medallions with salt and pepper and place in saute pan. Brown nicely on both sides until well caramelized. If needed, place into a hot oven until internal temperature of 140F is reached. Allow to rest before serving.

Tarragon Mustard Jus
Reserved braising liquid from the pork tenderloin recipe

1 tbsp chopped tarragon
2 tsp grain mustard
to taste – salt and pepper

Place braising liquid back onto stove and reduce to sauce consistency. If needed mix equal parts corn starch and cold water into a slurry and add a bit at a time to the liquid until sauce consistency is reached.

Finish with the chopped tarragon and grain mustard. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Strain liquid and cool down or keep warm until ready to serve.

Carrot & Curry Squash Puree

1 medium sized red curry squash, peeled and approximately 8 oz, cut into small pieces
2 medium sized carrots, peeled and approximately 8 oz, cut into small pieces
to cover, water
2 Tbsp butter
2 Tbsp heavy cream
to taste – salt and pepper

Place carrots into a heavy bottomed sauce pot. Cover with water, bring to a boil then simmer until both are tender and easy to puree. Drain the water and place the veg into a blender and puree with butter and part of the heavy cream. Puree until smooth adding more cream if needed. Season with salt and pepper. Keep warm until ready to serve.

Queen Violet Fingerlings
6 large queen violet fingerling potatoes, cut into coins 1 cm thick (or any variety of fingerling)
2 Tbsp canola oil
to taste – salt and pepper

Toss potatoes in canola oil, salt and pepper. Roast in a 400F oven until lightly browned and tender. Keep warm until ready to serve.