pork cutlets with mushroom balsamic caper sauce

This dinner, Pork Tenderloin Cutlets with Mushroom Balsamic Caper Sauce, was a throw together with what I had on hand. I know we all have different ingredients on hand but it shows that you really can do a lot with whatever you have. There are a few basic ingredients that may, or may not, be staples for you that I want to focus on today.

Pork Tenderloin

I tend to have pork tenderloin on hand generally. This are those long skinny pieces of pork, usually not more than 2″ in diameter. My grocery store has these on sale a lot and I tend to stock up. The freeze well and they thaw quickly also. Watch your store and stock up when these are on sale.

Balsamic Vinegar

Balsamic vinegar is a must have, I think, for any kitchen. It is not the same as plain vinegar at all. Balsamic is dark in color and made from grapes. It is acidic, as all vinegars, but the base of grapes also makes it sweet which makes the overall taste much milder. There are super cheap and super expensive balsamic vinegars available at stores. For general cooking, like this recipe, you do not need to super expensive, just look for a reasonably priced (for your budget) version. Per America’s Test Kitchen, the best choice for grocery store balsamic is Bertolli Balsamic Vinegar of Modena.

Capers

Capers are another must have for kitchens. Look for them in the same area as olives in our grocery store. Capers are generally pickled and are small round green balls. They can add a tremendous burst of flavor to so many dishes. Generally you are using only the caper, not the liquid. They are quite salty so add a little and then add more if need be. I use this with fish the most, but also very often with chicken and pork dishes.

These three ingredients can help you making so many different recipes. I really encourage you to buy them, at least once, and give them a try. Remember, as always, the recipe police are not going to break down your door for experimenting. Branch out from your basic recipes and try new ingredients from time to time.

Pork Tenderloin Cutlets with Mushroom Balsamic Caper Sauce

Now onto today’s featured recipe. As I said, this is just a throw together what I have type of recipe for me based on my experience cooking over the years and what I have on hand. For those of you who “think” you do not like mushrooms, you can leave them out. I promise you though that if you try different mushrooms, not canned, you will most likely find they are much more pleasant than you think they are. Key ingredients in this recipe are the balsamic vinegar and capers. If you do not eat pork you could easily replace this with chicken.

cut pork tenderloin and pound flat

Pork tenderloin is a super tender and lean cut of pork. They are generally, at most, no bigger than 2″ wide in the package. It is not the same as pork loin roast. Sometimes there are two tenderloins in one package, although it is hard to tell in the package. Regardless, once you open the package you want to trim the “silver skin” off of the tenderloin. This is a super thin membrane that is silver or whitish in color. It is very tough and doesn’t break down when cooking.

For this recipe, after you remove the silver skin, slice the tenderloin into pieces that you can pound into cutlets.

brown pork cutlets

Season each of the pork cutlets with salt and pepper. Then dredge in seasoned flour and pat off excess before adding to pan to brown on both sides.

saute mushrooms

Once the pork cutlets have browned, remove them to a plate and in the same pan add butter and saute the mushrooms. If you are skipping the mushrooms just move to the next step. I promise you though that fresh mushrooms are so much better than canned mushrooms which are slimy and gross to many people. You can use plain white button mushrooms or any other variety you like. Crimini mushrooms are a bit heartier and much more palatable to most people.

spiralized zucchini and squash

On a side note – I bought a package of already spiral cut zucchini and squash at my grocery store to serve as a side dish with the pork. Check in the produce department for these. If you own a spiralazing tool already then you can do this yourself. If not, you can try out the different spiral cuts and decide if you should buy a device to cut like this for your own kitchen.

saute zucchini and squash

I did a simple saute of the spiral zucchini and squash along with some thinly sliced onions and red bell pepper to serve along with the main dish. Add salt, pepper, garlic, and whatever other spices you like. Take note that most of the spiral cut veggies will shrink considerably when cooking.

add all ingredients back into pan

After you have browned the pork and the mushrooms you will deglaze the skillet with chicken and then add the balsamic vinegar. Then add the pork and mushrooms back into the skillet to bring the entire dish together.

To serve, remove pork cutlets from skillet and layer on platter. Then spoon the mushroom balsamic caper sauce over the top.

Is this a recipe you think you and your family would enjoy? What changes, if any, would  you make? What would you serve as side dishes?

Robyn

 

Pork Tenderloin Cutlets with Mushroom Balsamic Caper Sauce

Website Robyns.World

Ingredients

  • 1 Medium pork tenderloin
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt (yes again)
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper (yes again)
  • 1 teaspoon granulated garlic (not garlic salt - if using garlic salt omit the kosher salt)
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 8oz mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock
  • 1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons capers, drained
  • 1 teaspoon butter

Directions

Remove silver skin from pork tenderloin. Slice tenderloin into pieces about 1 1/2" wide. Lay each piece on side (one cut side up, one cut side down) and gently pound into thin cutlets. Season each piece, on both sides with salt and pepper.

Combine flour, additional salt, pepper and granulated garlic. Dredge each side of the cutlets in the seasoned flour, patting off excess and set aside.

Heat olive oil over medium-high heat in large skillet. Cook pork cutlets about 2-3 minutes per side. Remove from pan and set aside.

In the same skillet, add butter and melt. Add sliced mushrooms and cook for 4-5 minutes. Add in minced garlic and saute another 1-2 minutes. Remove mushrooms and garlic to same plate as pork.

In same skillet, add chicken stock and use spoon to scrape up bits stuck to bottom of pan. Add balsamic vinegar. Bring to a boil, reduce heat. Add back the pork and mushrooms. Simmer for 3-4 minutes, until pork is cooked thru. Stir in the capers. Remove from heat and add remaining butter and stir into sauce. Serve.

Pork Cutlets with Mushroom Balsamic Caper Sauce