September 29, 2010

Udon With Bok Choy and Beef

My brother is a trained chef who works as a sommelier in Washington, D.C. I'm happy that he decided to go into wine rather than cooking for his career because, well, it means that he doesn't spend his days cooking, so he still has a desire to do so in his time off. Oh, yeah, and also because he enjoys his work. But back to the selfish reason: when we head east to spend the holidays with our families, my brother cooks Christmas dinner, and last year he also cooked Christmas lunch.

Michael had thought that eating Chinese food on Christmas day was something particular to his people, but Asian food (though not always Chinese) for lunch has become something of a tradition for my family as well. We've gone to Chinatown for dim sum and had pho in suburban Virginia, but the best was probably last year, when my brother made udon. Udon! Noodles! In soup! what a great idea! Fortunately, that same year, he also gave us Takashi Yagihashi's book on noodles so that we could learn to make it ourselves (with some help, via email and text message, from my brother).

It turns out that udon is fairly simple to make. You start by preparing a broth called dashi, which is flavored with kombu (kelp) and dried bonito flakes, which impart that rich savoriness called umami. You add mirin (rice wine) and soy sauce to make udon broth, then noodles, beef, vegetables, or whatever you want in your soup. We found that the biggest challenge might have been tracking down the ingredients, though it turns out that they were not so hard to find, just hard to translate. The Asian foods aisle at the grocery store was like another country, with no English labels, and I had to call Michael and read the Japanese words transliterated into the English alphabet so that he could look them up and find out if they were what we wanted (in case you run into the same problem, katsuobushi is bonito flakes). If you have trouble finding the ingredients in your grocery store, try an Asian specialty store or look online.

Dashi (enough for 2)
Adapted from Takashi's Noodles

- 1 large piece kombu, wiped with a damp towel
- 4 cups water
- 1 cup bonito flakes
Put the kombu and water in a large pot and let them soak for at least twenty minutes (longer is better, as you want the seaweed to impart as much flavor to the water as possible; you can even soak overnight). Bring the water to a boil, remove the kombu, and turn the burner down to a simmer. Mix in the bonito flakes and simmer for 10 minutes, then strain the liquid to remove the flakes. Now you have dashi, which can be used as a base for any number of Japanese soups, such as soba and ramen.

Udon Broth and Soup (serves 2)
Also Adapted from Takashi's Noodles

- Dashi (see above)
- 2 tbsp mirin
- 2 tbsp soy sauce
- 1 and 1/2 ounces udon noodles (we like the dried kind)
- 1/2 cup dried shiitake mushrooms
- 1/2 lb flank steak or other steak, thinly sliced
- 1 small carrot, julienned
- 1 head baby bok choy, coarsely chopped
- 3-4 green onions, sliced into thin rounds

Combine your dashi with the mirin and soy sauce, and bring to a boil. Turn down to a simmer and add the dried mushrooms. Let them simmer until they are tender, about 10 minutes. Meanwhile, bring a pot of water to boil and cook the udon for 4 minutes, or according to your package's directions. Drain the noodles and set them aside until you are ready.

When the mushrooms are ready, drop the carrots, bok choy, and beef into the broth and simmer until the meat is cooked through (about 3 minutes). Divide the noodles among two bowls, then use a slotted spoon to remove the meat and vegetables from the broth and dish them out. Pour the broth over the other ingredients, top with the green onions, and get ready to slurp up your soup (by the way, we just used the chopsticks for the picture.)

September 23, 2010

Eggplant Wrapped Moussaka

Until fairly recently, neither of us knew very much about moussaka. In my case at least, this may be due to a fact that my dad has revealed to me when I told him about this recipe: he and my mom had a cooking misadventure with moussaka in the early years of their marriage. You see, back then, apparently they did not have such things as Epicurious and Smitten Kitchen and all the wonderful food blogs and they had to get their recipes from books, and these recipes did not come with hundreds of reviews and pictures and comments. They just had Julia Child and a large volume that they called "the Pellaprat," which held an almost sacred status in my house, and they made little notes in pencil on the pages of the cookbooks about what they liked and didn't like. I'm not sure where the moussaka recipe came from, or what the problem with it was (I would love to see the pencil notes on that one), but the way my dad tells it, this moussaka was such a disaster that it became a kind of joke between them, as in, "what do you want for dinner tonight? Moussaka?" (insert sarcasm).

I wish that my parents had had The New Basics Cookbook back then, and that they had tried this eggplant wrapped moussaka, because then they might have had a better relationship with this tasty Greek dish. We had some delicious moussaka at Kokkari in San Francisco, but this recipe is not that kind of moussaka - it doesn't have béchamel or potatoes, and while still hearty and filling, it is not quite as heavy and rich.

The main change we've made to the original recipe was to remove some of the ingredients; it calls for acorn squash and dried apricots, and while we don't have a problem with either of those things, we just felt that there was plenty of stuff already, and good stuff too: ground lamb, onion, almonds, currants, tomatoes, rice, mint, stock, and plenty of spices go into the filling, and are all wrapped up with spiced eggplant. Cool, tangy minted yogurt sauce is the perfect accompaniment.

Eggplant Wrapped Moussaka (serves 3 as a main course)
Adapted from The New Basics Cookbook
- 1 medium eggplant
- 2 tsp cumin
- 2 tsp cinnamon
- 2 tsp ginger
- 2 tsp paprika
- 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
- 1/3 cup flour
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1/2 cup milk
- 2 tsp olive oil
- 1/2 of a medium sized onion, coarsely chopped
- 1/4 cup sliced almonds
- 1/2 lb ground lamb
- 1/4 cup dried currants
- 1 tbsp fresh mint, chopped
- 1/3 cup stock
- 1/4 cup cooked white rice
- 1/2 cup chopped tomatoes (we usually use canned)
- Juice of 1/2 a lemon
(First of all - don't forget to cook the rice! There are a lot of ingredients here and it's easy to miss that way down there near the bottom the recipe calls for cooked white rice, and even though we know this recipe well we've gotten to the assembly part and realized, oops, we need rice. And then we were hungry for an extra twenty minutes. We do a quarter cup of uncooked rice, which requires half a cup of water to cook).

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Slice the eggplant into rounds about 1 centimeter thick. Lightly grease a baking sheet with olive oil. In a small bowl, mix together the cumin, cinnamon, ginger, paprika, and cayenne. Put the flour and half of the spice mixture into a wide, shallow bowl, add some salt and pepper, and mix. Pour the milk into another wide, shallow bowl (in both cases you just need a bowl wide enough to dip the eggplant slices). Dip each eggplant slice into the milk, then into the flour and spice mixture, getting a nice coating and then shaking off the excess. Place the eggplant slices on the baking sheet, put them in the oven, and bake until soft (about 30 minutes).
In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Cook the onions and almonds until the almonds start to get toasted and the onions are soft (about 10 minutes). Add the lamb and turn the heat up just a little bit, cooking until the lamb is browned (another 10 minutes). Add the rest of the spice mixture, stir it up, and cook for a minute or two. Then everything else goes in: currants, mint, stock, rice, tomatoes, and lemon juice; mix it all together (you can turn off the heat at this point.)
Lightly grease a 9 inch baking dish with olive oil, and line the bottom and sides with the eggplant slices. Pour the lamb mixture in, and then cover with more eggplant slices. Cover the dish with foil and bake for 45 minutes, or until you get really hungry and can't wait any more (the recipe says an hour, but I'm not sure we've ever made it past half an hour, and it always tastes fantastic). Serve with minted yogurt sauce.

Minted Yogurt Sauce
- 1/2 cup plain greek yogurt (any fat content should work - we use 2 percent)
- 2 tbsp chopped fresh mint
- Juice of 1/2 lemon
- Salt and pepper to taste

Mix all the ingredients together in a small bowl, and serve!
It might not be pretty, but it sure is tasty

September 20, 2010

Ginger Spice Cookies

When something as good as toffee chocolate chip cookies exists in the world, it's very difficult to try anything else. For the first twenty-seven years of my life, I don't think that I made any other kind of cookie. Ginger cookies never really crossed my mind, and Michael wasn't even sure he liked ginger, so we might never have discovered these fantastic Ginger Spice Cookies if it weren't for Bakesale Betty. Bakesale Betty, whose name is not really Betty but is in fact Alison Barakat, has a tiny little shop in the Temescal area of Oakland (and a new one in Uptown Oakland), where she makes the most incredible fried chicken sandwiches. Seriously - I could go on about them forever, but I won't, because that's not what we're talking about right now (and plenty of others have already done so). Bakesale Betty also makes fantastic baked goods, and because the line to get these fried chicken sandwiches often snakes out the door and down the sidewalk, she often very kindly sends someone out to offer cookies to people waiting in line. That is how we came to taste one of her big, chewy, moist, spicy ginger cookies.

We've been back to Bakesale Betty for ginger cookies many times, but we also had to try making something similar ourselves. We came across a wonderful recipe from Bon Appétit, tried it out, and have since made it for my faculty meetings and various parties and have never gotten anything but rave reviews. They have a spicy kick, with ginger, cinnamon, cloves, and chunks of candied ginger; they have an almost savory quality to them since the cookie itself is not too sweet, and the savoriness is balanced nicely by a light coating of sugar on the outside. They are incredibly soft and chewy and they are just delicious.

We found this recipe pretty much perfect as is, so have not made any changes to it, but there are a couple of notes. First of all, it calls for a quarter cup of butter plus half a cup of vegetable shortening. We never have vegetable shortening so just use all butter, but we suspect the shortening is intended to help the cookies maintain their shape and not get too flat. Which leads us to the next note - the recipe says to refrigerate the dough for an hour, but longer is better, especially if you use butter - colder dough will keep the cookies from flattening. And the most important note - we don't really think you can mess up this recipe. We've made them in a big rush and let the dough chill for less than an hour and undercooked them a little bit because we were late for a party and you know what? They were kind of flat, and a few fell apart, but it didn't matter because they were still awesome.

Ginger Spice Cookies (makes about two dozen)
from Bon Appétit, March 2000
- 2 cups flour
- 2 and 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp ground cloves
- 2 tsp baking soda
- 3/4 tsp salt
- 3/4 cup candied ginger, coarsely chopped
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1/4 cup butter, softened
- 1/2 cup vegetable shortening (or more butter)
- 1 egg
- 1/4 cup molasses
- Additional sugar (about 1/4 cup) for rolling dough

Mix the flour, ginger, cinnamon, cloves, baking soda, and salt together in a medium sized bowl. With an electric mixer, cream the butter and shortening, then add the sugar and beat until fluffy. Blend in the egg and molasses. Add the flour mixture in two parts, beating until combined, then stir in the candied ginger. Refrigerate the dough for at least an hour (preferably more).

When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line two baking sheets with parchment paper (you can butter them if you don't have parchment). Put the additional sugar (use white or demerara) in a bowl and use your hands to roll dough into balls of about 1-2 inches in diameter. 
Roll the balls in the sugar to coat them and place on the baking sheets, about 2 inches apart. Bake for 12 minutes or until the surfaces of the cookies have cracked. Let them cool for a couple of minutes on the baking sheets before transferring to cooling racks.

September 13, 2010

Eggplant and Mushroom Lasagna

When we think back to our cooking and eating when we first moved in together in grad school, we're pretty amazed at how much better we are now. Well, at the cooking part anyway - we've always been good at eating. Back then, we pretty much had a rotation of about three dishes that we made - and some were definitely better than others.

This vegetable lasagna is one of the few tried and true dishes that we have been making ever since we started cooking together, though naturally with a few tweaks and modifications along the way. One major change we've made was to use béchamel instead of ricotta - we find that the sauce does a better job of holding the dish together, and with the parmesan it adds a creamy texture and savory taste. Eggplant and mushrooms are such hearty and flavorful vegetables that even if you're used to meat in your lasagna, we don't think you'll miss it here.
We feel obliged to tell you that this dish involves preparing several different ingredients separately (tomato sauce, béchamel sauce, eggplant, and mushrooms) then assembling, so there are a fair number of steps and dishes involved. It definitely helps to get the "no boil" lasagna - the noodles cook through from the liquid in the sauces while the dish bakes, and you're saved one dirty pot. And you can do a lot of things at once - first get the eggplant in the oven, then start the tomato sauce if you're making it, then you can do mushrooms and béchamel while the eggplant bakes and the tomato sauce simmers. And you can clean up dishes as you go and while the lasagna bakes so you're not faced with a sink full of dishes when your belly is full of lasagna.

Eggplant and Mushroom Lasagna (serves 4)
- 6 lasagna noodles, cooked or "no boil"
- 1 small to medium sized eggplant
- 1/2 lb mushrooms (we used portobello, but any kind will do)
- 1 cup tomato sauce
- 1 cup béchamel sauce (recipe below)
- 1 cup grated mozzarella cheese
- 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Slice the eggplant into 1/2 inch thick rounds and place them on a baking sheet. Brush both sides with olive oil and put in the oven; bake until they are tender (about 30 minutes).

Meanwhile, make the tomato sauce - you can use the same recipe we described in our Middle Eastern Meatballs post, but leave out the cayenne (or leave it in, as you like).
Slice the mushrooms and heat some olive oil in a skillet over medium high heat. When the oil is hot, add the mushrooms, season with salt and pepper, and cook until all the water has evaporated and the mushrooms begin to brown (about 10 minutes).

Make the Béchamel Sauce:
- 2 tbsp butter
- 2 tbsp flour
- 1 cup milk
- 1/4 cup parmesan cheese
- Salt and black pepper to taste

Melt the butter in a small saucepan over medium low heat. Stir in the flour and let the two cook together for three or four minutes (the mixture should be bubbling). Whisk in the milk and turn the heat up to medium. Keep stirring until the milk thickens to the texture of a cream sauce. Add parmesan, salt, and pepper to taste.
Finally, assemble your lasagna: Cover the bottom of a 9 inch square baking dish with a thin layer of tomato sauce. Put down two noodles, and cover them with a third of the béchamel. Layer on half the eggplant and half the mushrooms and cover with one third of the mozzarella cheese. Then start again: tomato sauce, noodles, béchamel, vegetables, cheese; one more layer of tomato sauce (save a little for the top), noodle, béchamel, tomato sauce, and cheese, and you're done.
Sprinkle the parmesan on top, cover the dish with tinfoil, and bake at 375 degrees for fifteen minutes. Remove the foil top and let the dish bake another fifteen minutes. And the best part - this dish is even better reheated, so we always make a batch large enough for at least another meal.

September 6, 2010

Toasted Almond Shortbread Cookies

We LOVE toasted almonds - so much that on our countertop, where we keep little IKEA jars full of grains and things that we use frequently and keep on hand constantly, like lentils, rice, oats, and quinoa, there is a spot for toasted almonds. Recently we've been putting them in salads (last night with arugula, goat cheese, and nectarines - yum), and they're also a good snack all by themselves. The flavor goes well with sweet or savory, and we've been wanting to create some kind of cookie with them for a while. We finally got around to trying these shortbread cookies, which are adapted from a pecan shortbread cookie recipe from The Craft of Baking. And oh, they are good! They're buttery and crisp and not too sweet, but with a wonderful layer of caramelized sugar around the outside and almond toastiness throughout. I can't believe we've never made shortbread before, but now that we've been introduced to the world of shortbread I have a feeling it will be appearing frequently in our kitchen.

This recipe has a couple of specialty ingredients that you may not have just sitting around in your pantry: vanilla beans and Demerara sugar. This was the first time we had used vanilla beans, and we were lucky because our friend Rebecca, who is an avid baker, had bought a few of them, then decided to move to the Netherlands for graduate school. She wasn't planning to bring all the contents of her pantry with her, and (fortunately for us) thought that we might be able to take good care of the vanilla beans. They were kind of fun to use - you split the bean open and then scrape out a sort of moist powder, which is the vanilla seed and which creates the little black flecks you see in certain vanilla flavored items. If you don't have vanilla beans, though, just add half a teaspoon more vanilla extract.

We did a little bit of sugar research to find out about Demerara sugar, and what we learned was interesting. Molasses is a byproduct of the production of white sugar, but do you know what brown sugar is? It's sugar that has had the molasses removed (part of the refining process to make white sugar), then added back in. Demerara sugar (as well as Sugar in the Raw or turbinado sugar) is the "real" thing - sugar with the molasses still in it, without having gone through the extra step of removing it, then adding it back in. So, brown sugar has gone through two extra steps, but for some reason is less expensive. Anyway, the Demerara sugar has large crystals and a more complex flavor, so it's nice on the outside of these cookies, but you could substitute turbinado sugar or white sugar (brown sugar might not work as well since it's so fine and moist).

Almond Shortbread Cookies
Adapted from Karen DeMasco and Mindy Fox, The Craft of Baking

- 3/4 cup slivered almonds, coarsely chopped
- sea salt
- 10 tbsp butter (1 and 1/4 sticks), at room temperature
- 1/2 cup confectioners' sugar
- 1/2 vanilla bean, seeds scraped out
- 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 tsp kosher salt
- 1 and 1/2 cups unbleached all purpose flour, plus a little bit for rolling
- 1 egg yolk, lightly beaten
- 3 tbsp Demerara sugar

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Spread the almonds out on a baking sheet and bake until they are a deep golden brown, about 10 minutes. You can tell they're done because they will begin to be extremely fragrant. Remove the almonds from the oven, sprinkle with the sea salt, and let cool before using.
Beat the butter and confectioners' sugar together with the vanilla seeds, vanilla extract, and salt until smooth. Add the flour in three stages, mixing well each time, and then stir in the toasted almonds. Place the dough on a lightly floured work surface and roll it into a log about 1 and 1/2 inches in diameter. Wrap the log in parchment paper and put it in the refrigerator for at least an hour so that it's firm enough to slice.
When you're nearly ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Remove the log from the refrigerator and let it soften just a couple of minutes. Coat the dough with the egg yolk and then roll it in the Demerara sugar until you have a nice coating on the outside. Slice the log into rounds about 1/2 inch thick, place them on the baking sheets about an inch apart, and bake until the cookies are slightly golden (25 - 30 minutes).
The color of the cookies won't change very much; you can tell they're done because they will start to smell very fragrant and the bottoms will be golden brown (you could scoop one up and peek if you're not sure).

September 4, 2010

Ratatouille Provençal with Polenta

This is an adaptation of a recipe from The New Basics Cookbook which, throughout graduate school, was the only cookbook we owned. My dad actually drew our attention to this recipe, which makes ratatouille a little more interesting with the addition of basil pesto and olives. You barely sauté the vegetables before putting them in the oven to bake for 45 minutes. When we first gave it a try, we liked it, but we had a dilemma. By itself, it's not quite enough for a main course, but it's enough work that we didn't feel like making a meat to go with it. So what to serve it with to make a complete meal? We first tried couscous, which was fine, but a little lackluster. Then, we finally made one of those "why haven't we been eating this all along" discoveries - polenta. It's so easy and delicious.

In fact, the first time we made polenta (for a wild mushroom appetizer that we made last Thanksgiving), I was stirring the polenta while Michael worked on the mushrooms, and I tasted the polenta to see how it was doing. It was so good that I tasted it again, and "tasted" is probably not the best word because it was quite a large spoonful, and tasting turned into eating and there was a moment when I really wasn't sure I was going to have the self-control to stop eating it. That's how good it is.

For the ratatouille, we added some capers to the original recipe, as well as a wider variety of squashes, and crumbled some goat cheese on top for some creamy tanginess - add some garlic bread on the side and it's a perfect meal. You could easily make it vegan by using only stock or water in the polenta and leaving off the cheese; if you want to make it meatier, we think andouille sausage would be a good addition.

Ratatouille (serves 4-5)
Adapted from Julee Rosso and Sheila Lukins, The New Basics Cookbook
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 2 leeks, well rinsed and chopped into 1 inch pieces
- 2 cloves garlic, chopped
- 1 medium eggplant, diced into 1 inch pieces
- 1 pound of assorted squash (we used zucchini, yellow and green summer squash), diced
- 1 pint cherry tomatoes (or 2 medium tomatoes, chopped)
- 1/2 cup niçoise olives
- 2 tbsp capers
- 1/2 cup basil pesto (recipe below)

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the leeks and cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, squash, and eggplant and cook for three minutes. Stir in the tomatoes, olives, capers, and pesto, and transfer the mixture to a casserole. Cover and put in the oven. Bake for 45 minutes, stirring once halfway through.

Basil Pesto (makes about 3/4 cup - a little more than you need for the ratatouille, but we find that extra pesto is never a problem)
A confession: we are not purists when it comes to our pesto. When we discovered that pine nuts had more than doubled in price, we decided to try substituting cashews, and thought the result tasted just as good.
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 and 1/2 cup fresh basil, loosely packed
- 1/4 cup pine nuts or other nuts
- 1/3 cup parmesan cheese
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- Salt and black pepper to taste

Put the garlic, basil, pine nuts, cheese, and salt and pepper in a food processor, and pulse until well blended. With the food processor running, add the olive oil in a slow stream until the mixture resembles a creamy paste, using more or less oil as needed.

Creamy Polenta (serves 4-5)
- 1 cup polenta (coarse cornmeal)
- 2 cups vegetable stock
- 2 cups milk
- 1 California bay leaf or 2 Turkish bay leaves
- 1 tbsp butter
- 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
- Salt and pepper to taste

Bring the stock and milk to a boil in a medium saucepan. Turn off the heat and add the bay leaf, letting the mixture sit for fifteen minutes to absorb the flavor (skip this step if you're pressed for time). Remove the bay leaf and bring the liquid to a simmer over medium heat. Add the polenta gradually, pouring it in a slow stream while stirring it in with a whisk to prevent clumps. Keep stirring the mixture until it thickens, about 10 minutes. Add the butter, cheese, salt, and pepper, and taste (if you have the self-control to do so!)
Serve the ratatouille over the polenta and crumble some soft goat cheese, such as chevre, over the top.

September 1, 2010

Pork Tenderloin with Peach Mostarda

Summer is ending soon, but would be difficult to tell here in the Bay Area, since the summer has been cold even by the standards of a place of which Mark Twain apparently did not really say, "the coldest winter I ever spent was a summer in San Francisco" (thanks, Snopes. I will stop repeating that one to my summer students when they show up from Korea with flip-flops and tank tops). Anyway, despite our fickle weather, we have figured out that it's about time for a seasonal change because: 1. I start school tomorrow; and 2. The produce is shifting. Already. Local asparagus are long gone, and English peas are not nearly as robust as they were two months ago. And although I have recently been spending a lot of time thinking about pumpkin bread with apple sauce, fall is not here yet - oh no! Beautiful tomatoes, apparently delayed by our cold summer, have just started to appear, and berries and peaches are still in fine form. So, we'd better get in our fix of summer favorites before they disappear.
We spent a good while this summer pondering peaches and pork and how we could put them together. Then, Amanda Gold at the San Francisco Chronicle wrote an article about summer condiments, one of which was peach mostarda - peaches simmered in a simple syrup with garlic, ginger, red pepper flakes, vinegar, and mustard. Perfect! We tried it once and tweaked it a bit the second time around. We served ours over brown rice with some sauteed collard greens.

Peach Mostarda
Adapted from Amanda Gold, San Francisco Chronicle

- 2 ripe peaches (about 1 lb)
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 tbsp rice vinegar (original recipe calls for cider, but rice is what we had, and it worked fine)
- 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
- 1 tsp ginger, finely chopped
- 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
- 1 tbsp dijon mustard
- Salt to taste

Peel the peaches (you can use the same boiling water technique as the one for peeling tomatoes that we discussed in our Middle Eastern Meatballs post), remove the pits, and cut the fruit into one inch chunks.
Put the brown sugar, water, vinegar, garlic, ginger, and red pepper flakes in a small saucepan over medium heat and bring it to a boil. Add the peaches and cook until they are just soft, about 10 minutes. Remove the peaches with a slotted spoon and put them in a bowl.
Bring the sauce to a boil again and whisk in the mustard. Add salt, if desired. Cook until the sauce has reduced and thickened slightly, about 10 minutes. Pour the sauce over the peaches.

Pork Tenderloin (serves 2)

- 2/3 lb pork tenderloin
- Olive oil
- Salt and black pepper

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. To make the cooking process easier, cut the tenderloin in half or in thirds, depending how many servings you want. Pat the meat dry and sprinkle both sides with salt and pepper. Heat some olive oil in an oven safe skillet (we used our stainless steel) over medium high heat. Put the pork pieces in the pan and cook, turning to get an even brown on each side, about 2-3 minutes per side.
Put the pan in the oven for about 8 minutes per inch of thickness.
A few minutes before the pork is done cooking in the oven, pour the peach sauce over the pork and let them cook together for 3-4 minutes.
To finish, remove the pork and sauce from the oven and put back on the burner over medium-high heat until the sauce begins to simmer (you can skip this last step, but we find that it really lets the pork flavors merge with the sauce and gives the sauce a final chance to thicken.)