Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Lunch Week 12: Roasted Pork Tenderloin Sandwich with Broccoli Rabe

So every Sunday, I head over to the kitchen to whip up a big batch of food for lunch next week. Yes, I brown bag. And I almost always do it, unless I become too busy to even buy cold cuts from the deli. I do it for several reasons being health, finance, and laziness. Now, you may think that spending hours on a day off to prep and cook five meals at once is hardly lazy. But let me remind you, I hate it when the time comes to decide what to eat for lunch every day. I work in Midtown so the choices are endless. My problem, the more choices, the harder it is for me. So it's much easier for me to have my lunch ready and already decided. So my lunch for the week: Roasted Pork Tenderloin Sandwich with Broccoli Rabe, Caramelized Onions, and Cheese. This week, I wanted to have sandwiches. But I didn't want to have deli meat. I wanted something interesting. I had some pork tenderloins in the freezer yet to be used. It was perfect. For greens, I opted for broccoli rabe for it's slight bitterness, and caramelized onions for sweetness. Of course, I always have cheese in my sandwiches. I found a nice spicy horseradish havarti. Yum! This is going to be good. The ingredients: pork tenderloin, dijon mustard, balsamic vinagrette, broccoli rabe, garlic, lemon, onions, and cheese. First, I marinate the pork for roasting. I've made this before so I won't go into many details. But into the oven at 375F until it reads 170F on an instant thermometer. Next, the onions. Peel and slice thinly. Place into a pan with oil on low-medium low heat. You want to slowly develop these flavors. It'll take awhile actually but it's well worth it. Keep in mind that most of the moisture will be evaporated so buy more onions than you think you need. While the onions are slowly caramelizing, stir occasionally so that nothing burns or sticks. When they're done, they would have developed a nice golden brown color and the taste would be similar to sweet and maybe slightly burnt caramel. There's no way to cheat to get this type of flavor. It's all time and patience. Lastly, the broccoli rabe. Make sure you wash these thoroughly. Then cut the ends off. They can be a little rough to eat. Cut up a whole head of garlic. Heat a pan on medium with lots of olive oil. Add garlic. Cook slightly. Now add broccoli rabe. Cover so it can start steaming. Add fresh lemon juice. This helps cut the bitterness. Once limp, turn vegetables over for even cooking. When they turn a nice bright green, they're ready. If you over cook them, they're turn a dull green. Not good. Now to assemble my sandwich. Since the ingredients are quite hearty, you would want a strong bread here. I went for semolina hero rolls. First, the broccoli rabe, then pork, then onions. Lastly, the cheese. If you want extra flavor, add a schmear of mustard as well. The flavors work really well together. The broccoli rabe gave the sandwich the crunchy texture that it needed. And a slight lemony and bitter flavor. The pork was hearty and very flavorful...so savory. The onion sweetened things up a bit. And the cheese was soft and creamy. And the horseradish gave everything the added kick. The bread held up well and didn't break a part. However, the sandwich was too big. Too big in a bad way at work. I normally can eat this size of a sandwich in the privacy of my own home. But when in the office, I'd like to be a little more civilized. Either I have to cut out some broccoli rabe, or dig out some inner bread, or eat it as an open faced sandwich.

1 comment:

  1. wow. that looks really good and it's ginormous. i like.

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