Grilled honey mustard tenderloin & a simple salad

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I never knew how amazing pork tenderloin could be on the grill. Seriously? How did I not know this? About 80% of all the meat Jérôme eats is pork, so I’ve definitely had to find new and fun uses for tenderloin, or filet mignon as it’s known in France, over the years. In the winter I usually make it as a ragoût, cutting it into medallions and cooking it with white wine, cream, leeks and other veggies. In the spring and summer months, I tended more towards searing and finishing off in the oven, adding balsamic reductions or making plum chutneys to wake up the flavor of the pork. I even marinated one with Coca Cola recently, and it turned out to be one of my most favorite ways to cook tenderloin. But grilling it? Totally simpler, and perfect for summer. Continue reading

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Coca cola-marinated pork tenderloin with braised red cabbage

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I love pork tenderloin, and Jérôme loves it even more, meaning we eat a lot of it. It never seems to get old though because it’s so versatile. Once I went for a taste of home, pounding it out into fillets and making breaded tenderloin sandwiches, often enough I make it braised in white wine with leeks and a lemon cream sauce, but my favorite recipes are always those where it’s seared and just cooked in the oven, usually with some sort of marinade, glaze or accompanying sauce. I love it with a balsamic reduction and recently also made it with a fruity chutney. This time inspiration came from Bon Appétit. Continue reading

Creamy cauliflower, cumin and lardon soup

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Yes, I know. ANOTHER soup! But it’s the season, and soups are one of my favorite (and economically advantageous) ways to warm up and enjoy something home-cooked in the winter months. It was especially cold here in France over the last couple of weeks when the weather brought us our first snow of the year that actually stuck, so soup was definitely on the menu (potato, leek and fried almond, turnip leek and sweet potato, roasted carrot and parsnip with coconut milk, etc., etc.). This is a fabulously basic soup. It’s hearty, filling and satisfying. You can eat it as thick or as thin as you like but I promise it’ll fill you up. I’m not sure what it is about this soup. I never regarded cauliflower as extremely filling but this is one hearty soup. It’s also very simple and something about respecting the cooking times and different steps takes it to another level, and I don’t recommend skimping. Continue reading

Pancetta-wrapped pork tenderloin with plum chutney

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This year I began a love affair… With plums. I guess I never really noticed them in the beginning. And then once I did, there were so many varieties that I didn’t know which to choose. I finally took the plunge a few weeks ago and discovered a mildly sweet, perfectly pint-sized fruit that I ate all during the season and transformed into things like my hazelnut plum cake and this amazing sweet and tangy chutney, paired with my all-time favorite cut of meat, pork tenderloin. Continue reading

Diet highlights

Phew. I’ve been trying to take photos of what I’ve been making, because I’m pretty proud of how I’m handling the diet. Last time, I got bored pretty quickly. This time, I find myself thinking, “If this is all it takes to lose weight, I’ll never be fat again!” The little things like replacing crème fraîche with its reduced fat version seem to be making a huge difference for my metabolism, and a very, very slight one for my taste buds.

It’s been just over four weeks, and I’m nearly five kilos down. It’s going great, and I’m really excited to keep it going, and to get back to where I was a year ago. And maybe even go further! So, here’s what I’ve been up to…

This tandoori chicken was amazingly good. I used my new mortar and pestle that I bought in Skopje to crush up three cloves of garlic and a handful of cardamom seeds. I added in a good helping of cayenne pepper, sea salt, tandoori spices, paprika, lemon juice, cumin and who knows what else… Then mixed my spice mix into some fromage blanc nature (0% fat, of course!) and let my chicken marinate for about 30 minutes before throwing it on the grill. The kebabs were served with fresh onion slices, lemon and a delicious sauce made from fromage blanc, oven roasted garlic, loads of fresh mint and black pepper, and a little lemon juice (this sauce was leftover from my beetroot fries earlier in the week, which were amazing!). It was divine! Continue reading

Spicing it up

I am officially on day 13 of my redo Dukan diet, and doing just fine, a part from a little fatigue. I think the key to this being a success is spending time in the kitchen. When I hear the word protein, I immediately think of omelettes, meat and yogurt. Yes, but not only. Eating these things day in and day out would be monotonous, but how do I adapt my daily go-to recipes to my dieting constraints?

I’ve figured that out, and while eating 1 1/2 pork chops without any side dish is still kind ofsad, at least my pork chops were kick-ass (three times in a row; my grocery store was having a sale!). I can’t really post a recipe, because I don’t really have one. I combined several that I found on epicurious and added and omitted depending on the ingredients, quantities and especially the spices. Curcuma, piment, curry, ginger, cumin… of course paired with fresh lime juice, sometimes soy sauce, a fair amount of salt and pepper, and always applied as a dry-rub.

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