Monday, July 31, 2006

Pork Tenderloin with Curried Fruit Sauce

This has been a standby of mine for several years; I remember making it in the newly-remodeled kitchen in our first house, and it has served well ever since. Pork tenderloin is cheap and readily available in Taiwan, as are all the other ingredients. It's not exactly company fare, but it's homey and appeals to grown-ups and kids alike (it's not spicy at all).

Pork Tenderloin with Curried Fruit Sauce
From On Rice by Rick Rodgers
(Makes 4-6 servings)

In a shallow dish or gallon-size baggie, combine
1/4 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper

and dredge or toss
1 1/2 pounds boneless pork tenderloin, cut into 1/4 inch thick medallions
until well-coated in the flour mixture. Shake off excess flour. Cook in a large non-stick skillet over medium heat, in
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
until lightly browned on both sides. You will probably need to do this in two batches; add more oil as needed. Transfer to a plate and set aside.

In the skillet, heat
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
and add
1 tart apple, peeled and chopped
1 medium onion, chopped

and cover. Cook until the onion is golden, about five minutes. Stir in
2 garlic cloves, minced
and cook, uncovered, for 1 minute. Add
2 teaspoons curry powder
and stir for 30 seconds.

Stir in
1 1/2 cups chicken broth
1 ripe banana, chopped

Return the pork to the skillet and bring to a simmer. Reduce the heat to low and cook until the apple is tender and the sauce has thickened, about 3 minutes.

In a small bowl, stir together
1/3 cup plain yogurt
1/2 teaspoon cornstarch

until cornstarch is dissolved. Add to the skillet, along with
1/3 cup raisins
and heat gently, without boiling. Season with salt and pepper to taste. If desired, garnish with
Chopped green onions
and serve immediately, over rice.

Buying info:
Pork tenderloin is available at most grocery stores, except perhaps the really small ones. If you're not sure what you're looking for, the tenderloin is about the same dimensions as a rolling pin (without the handles): long and narrow. Costco sells them in a 3-pack, but the price is reasonable wherever you find them; much cheaper than in the U.S., and without any injected saline or flavor-enhancers which seem to be all the rage in American meats now. Taiwan pork is also quite safe, as it does not harbor trichinosis. As for yogurt, you can use homemade, of course, or use Yoplait low-fat plain drinking yogurt (which is a little bit sweet, but works fine in this recipe). Yoplait is everywhere; check your local 7-11. Curry powder is not too hard to find: Walason's, Costco, and Dollars all carry it.

Monday, July 10, 2006

Buttermilk Soup

This recipe has been in my mom's family for several generations; it comes via her father's mother, and now Cole has tried it and promised to carry on the tradition (although to be honest I only told him it was tapioca pudding -- I knew that he, like most people, would have a hard time getting past the name). He liked the sweet and tangy flavors, though, and I hope you will, too. Best served warm.

Buttermilk Soup

In a large saucepan combine
1 1/2 quarts buttermilk
1 cup raisins
1/2 cup tapioca

and cook until tapioca is clear, stirring constantly.

In a bowl combine
3/4 cup sugar
2 eggs, beaten

and mix thoroughly. Add to buttermilk mixture, and continue to stir over low heat until thick.

Add salt and cinnamon to taste.
Sprinkle a little nutmeg on top of each serving.

Buying information:
Hmmm... I've never made this in Taiwan because buttermilk is not available. I have just sent away for a catalog, however, from the Yogourmet company, from whom I buy my yogurt starter, as I see they also sell a buttermilk starter. I will update you once I have more information. Tapioca is available at Walason's, I believe.


Our visit home is at an end -- we fly back to Taiwan tonight -- so I thought I'd post a couple recipes that we enjoyed while we were here. This one is for a fudge recipe my mom and Nora made yesterday; Nora struggles with the word fudge, so boodge it is. (The original recipe is called Niegemann Fudge, to give proper credit.)


In a large saucepan, melt together
1 1/3 cups chocolate chips
1 cube butter

Remove from heat. Add
2 cups powdered sugar
1 egg
1 teaspoon vanilla

Beat with electric mixer until smooth. Add
Chopped nuts, to taste

Pour into buttered pie plate or shallow dish to firm up. Refrigerate leftovers, if there are any -- this is a smooth, truffle-like fudge, and won over even the toughest fudge critics in our family. It was gone by bedtime.

Buying info:
All ingredients are available at Walason's (chocolate chips are in the coolcase with the whipping cream). Costco has Tollhouse chips in bulk, if you plan on making a lot of boodge, er, fudge.