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Pork Tenderloin with Lemon, Capers and Olives

Prep Time45 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Total Time1 hr
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Servings: 4 servings


  • 1 whole pork tenderloin sliver skin removed
  • ½ cup buttermilk
  • 1 cup flour for dredging
  • 1 teaspoon salt to season flour
  • 4 whole eggs
  • ¾ cup fresh Pecorino Romano or Parmesan, grated
  • 2 cups breadcrumbs
  • 1 tablespoon fresh oregano chopped
  • ½ cup canola oil
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil extra virgin
  • 2 tablespoons garlic sliced thinly
  • 1 small lemon thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon capers drained
  • ¼ cup mixed olives pitted and sliced
  • cup white wine
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice freshly squeezed
  • 2 tablespoons flat leaf parsley chopped
  • freshly ground pepper to taste
  • cup butter cold, cut into small pieces


  • Slice the pork tenderloin into 1½ ounce pieces (about 1½ inches wide). Using a meat pounder or meat mallet, flatten each piece of tenderloin.
    Be careful not to over pound the meat or it will break apart and turn into mush. Pound the meat toward and away from your body, never straight down onto the meat.
  • Put the cutlets into a bowl and cover with buttermilk. Refrigerate the meat for at least 30 minutes up to a couple of hours.
    I have read that the calcium in the buttermilk is supposed to activate enzymes in the meat that break down proteins and I've also read buttermilk contains lactic acid that helps dissolve the meat's proteins. Not sure which is correct, but it works.
  • While the cutlets are marinating, get the rest of your ingredients ready. We used shallow soup bowls to layout the dunking stations.
    One bowl contained the flour seasoned with salt, another holds the eggs that are beaten and then seasoned with ½ cup of cheese and the last bowl has the breadcrumbs mixed with the remaining ¼ cup cheese, oregano and salt.
  • Using one hand for dredging in the flour and the other for dredging in the eggs and breadcrumbs, start dredging each cutlet in the flour being sure to shake off any extra before dredging in the eggs.
  • Finally coat the pork with breadcrumbs and set aside until all are done.
  • Heat the biggest sauté or frying pan you have and add the canola oil. If your pan is not big enough to sauté all the cutlets without over crowding (steams instead of sautés), cook the pork in batches until nicely browned, about 2 to 3 minutes per side. Transfer the cutlets to a plate and reserve.
  • Wipe out the pan you are using or start with a clean pan and heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the lemon slices and garlic and cook for 3 minutes.
  • Add the capers and olives, then the white wine and cook until the sauce is reduced by half.
  • Add the lemon juice and parsley. Season the sauce with freshly ground pepper.
  • Add butter in pieces, (this is called mounting) and whisk continuously until the sauce starts to thicken and has that glossy look.
  • Taste and adjust seasoning with salt and pepper.
  • Now add the cutlets back to the sauce to reheat for a minute or two.
  • Plate the cutlets on top of or right next to the broccoli rabe, top with sauce and serve.


Don't be surprised when you take that first bite. The lemon is going to hit you square in the mouth. It's delicious.