Valentine's Day Meat Course
When coming up with a meat dish, I looked at the rich cheese and the rich bisque and decided to lighten things up a little for the meat course. I chose pork because of its mild sweetness. After all, Valentine's Day is all about sweets for the sweet.
To up the sweetness ante, we'll pair the pork with a very simple and flavorful apricot glaze that will play on the meat's sweetness. Don't worry, it won't taste like candy. We'll temper the apricot with some vinegar for a little zing and balance.
Pork Medallions with Apricot Glaze Recipe
- pork tenderloin cut in 2 inch slices, 1-2 per person, depending on how many courses you are serving
- salt and black pepper to taste
- vegetable oil
- ½ cup chicken or vegetable stock
- ½ cup apricot jam
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- ½ teaspoon ground ginger
- ¼ cup apple cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon butter
- Sprinkle both sides of the pork medallions with salt and pepper.
- Heat a lidded sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add one tablespoon of neutral vegetable oil to the pan.
- Sear the medallions in the oil until nicely browned on each side, about 3 minutes per side.
- Add chicken or vegetable stock, jam, mustard, ginger, and vinegar to the pan. Bring to a simmer, cover, and simmer over low heat until the internal temperature of the pork is 155-157 degrees F, about 15-20 minutes, depending on your stove.
- Remove the pork to a platter and cover with foil.
- Return the pan to the heat, and turn the heat up to medium-high. Bring to a boil and reduce the sauce until thick and syrupy. Taste and adjust seasonings, if necessary.
- Remove from the heat and swirl in the butter, just until melted. This will enrich the sauce and give it a nice sheen.
- Plate the pork and spoon the glaze over the medallions. You may serve this along with the Pear, Walnut and Goat Cheese Salad. The two will complement each other nicely.
If pork doesn't work for you and you are looking for a decadent beef course, you may be interested in my Chateaubriand for Two recipe. Made from beef tenderloin, this dish will melt in your mouth. It's natural for Valentine's Day because it is the perfect size for sharing.
Crock Pot Short Ribs
Let's say you don't have time to cook a big meal because you work late or don't want to eat at 9 p.m.; why not prepare something in a crock pot?
You might be thinking, what can you cook in a crock pot that will be elegant enough for Valentine's Day? I say any recipe that calls for braising, like short ribs. I'm finding slow-cooked short ribs in some of the fanciest restaurants in the country.
All you have to do is take a half hour to prep all the ingredients in the morning, stick them in the crock pot, and when you come home, you will have a delicious and romantic meal. All you'll have to do is serve it up and bask in your Valentine's adoration.
You can read my Crock Pot Short Ribs recipe here.
I hope you are enjoying my recent posts on preparing a Valentine's Day Feast for that special person in your life. I know many of you are planning to go out, but with the economy, this might be the perfect opportunity to dine in.
So far, I have posted the following recipes and articles on the Reluctant Gourmet Cooking Blog: