Saturday, January 17, 2009

Pan-Seared Pork Tenderloin with Rhubarb Compote

6 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 1/2 tablespoons ground black pepper
1 tablespoon salt
2 teaspoons dried rubbed sage
2 teaspoons fennel seeds, ground in spice mill or in mortar with pestle
2 1/2 pounds pork tenderloins (about 2 large or 3 medium), trimmed of fat and sinew
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
Fresh sage sprigs

Rhubarb Compote
6 cups 1-inch pieces fresh rhubarb (from about 2 pounds)
1 1/4 cups sugar
1/3 cup water
Mix 3 tablespoons olive oil, ground black pepper, salt, dried sage, and ground fennel in small bowl. Rub oil mixture all over pork tenderloins; place in large baking dish and let stand 20 minutes.

Heat remaining 3 tablespoons oil in large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add pork and cook until browned on all sides, about 6 minutes. Reduce heat to medium; cover and cook until instant-read thermometer inserted into center of pork registers 150°F, turning pork occasionally, about 8 minutes longer for medium tenderloins and 10 minutes for large.
Transfer pork to cutting board; let rest 5 minutes. Cut pork crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick slices; arrange on platter. Sprinkle with parsley; garnish with sage sprigs. Serve with Rhubarb Compote.

Rhubarb Compote
Combine all ingredients in heavy large saucepan. Bring to boil, stirring until sugar dissolves. Reduce heat to medium-low; simmer until rhubarb is very soft and begins to fall apart, stirring occasionally, about 20 minutes. Transfer compote to medium bowl. Refrigerate uncovered until cold, about 3 hours. (Can be prepared 2 days ahead. Cover and keep chilled.) Serve cold.