Another meal of lean pork tenderloin, this time with a simple mustard sauce and an unusual but complementary side of zucchini. But it needed one more item… so I added potatoes. Why purple?
The pork tenderloin is simply but deliciously prepared with a mustard-dill sauce.
The zucchini are cut thin and brightened as though pickled.
And the potatoes? Oy. They needed a little research. Potatoes are another foodstuff that I may be encouraged to avoid — chiefly for their boredom. One research study I found showed eating potatoes every day for four years and concluded more healthful produce exists. To me, that’s silly. I have potatoes perhaps two or three times a month, having thrown away French fries and potato chips entirely. I consider the rest critical to happiness.
Purple potatoes, with their deep violet color, are increasingly available in local U.S. supermarkets and are earning a solid taste and health reputation.
Though sometimes hard to tell, they come in slightly different types and names to match: Purple Majesty, Purple Viking and Purple Peruvian are a few. Purples are typically small in size, dry and starchy with a slight earthy and nutty flavor. And they MAY have a greater nutritional value, which you can read about below the recipe.
Pork Tenderloin with Zucchini and Potatoes
- ½ cup white balsamic vinegar
- 2 tbsp. plus ½ cup chopped fresh dill
- 2-3 medium zucchini, cut into 1/8 inch-thick rounds
- 1/4 cup Dijon mustard
- 1 tbsp. honey
- 1.5 to 2 lbs. pork tenderloin
- 2 lb. purple potatoes (or others if you can’t find them), skins on
How to prepare:
Potatoes, if you choose to include: Preheat oven to 425. Cut the potatoes to ¾ inch pieces, leaving them with their skins. Drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepp
er and cook in a non-stick, oven-proof pan for about 40 minutes, turning occasionally.
Zucchini: Whisk vinegar, 2 tablespoons dill, 2 teaspoons salt, and 2 tablespoons water in medium bowl until salt dissolves. Add zucchini. Let marinate 15 minutes, tossing often. Drain zucchini.
Pork tenderloin: Meanwhile, whisk ½ cup chopped dill, the Dijon mustard, 1 tbsp. honey, and 2 tbsp. water in a medium bowl. Season mustard-dill sauce with salt and pepper.
Prepare barbecue (medium heat). Sprinkle pork with salt and pepper; spread with 2 tablespoons mustard-dill sauce. Grill to your liking, turning occasionally; I test mine by pressing to be sure they are not overcooked. I feel a little pushback, knowing the pork is still pink inside. Transfer to plate; let rest 10 minutes.
Slice the pork into 1/2-inch-thick slices. Serve them topped with the remaining mustard-dill sauce, allowing plenty to spill onto the potatoes, and with the pickled zucchini alongside.
A few notes about purple potatoes and healthful eating:
I have read that purple potatoes deliver an abundance of antioxidants — four times as much as Russet potatoes, which themselves have a good reputation. That means protecting body cells against free radical damage that can increase disease risk. I have read they are naturally low in calories, fat, cholesterol and sodium, and rich in vitamins and minerals. They may help you control weight and pack in fiber.
A study conducted by the USDA among overweight participants suffering from hypertension reported that consuming six to eight golf ball-sized purple potatoes twice daily for one month reduced blood pressure by an average of 4 percent. These antioxidants also strengthen your immune system and can help prevent certain heart diseases and cancers. I’d love to know more.
Like all of my commentary about foodstuffs, please do your own research and draw your own conclusions.