Wanting to live vicariously through Amanda’s recent vacation to the sparkling shores of Miami, we decided to cook up our best tropical inspired meals to keep the vacation magic alive. I, being nowhere near a beach now or in the near future, was a big fan of this idea. While munching on something with these tropical flavors is undoubtedly more enjoyable while breathing in the fresh sea air and listening to waves crash in the background, I’ll take what I can get.
Since I’m currently and tragically landlocked, and any attempt at obtaining fresh, Caribbean fish seemed futile, I opted for pork. Recently, I’ve been on a bit of a cilantro kick and I knew I wanted those fresh, albeit divisive, flavors to be included. Fortunately, cilantro pairs wonderfully with mango and nothing screams tropical to me more than the bold and tart flavors of the mango. This slow roasted pork tenderloin topped with the coconut sauce was enough to give me the taste of the vacation I didn’t have, even if I couldn’t quite smell the ocean air.
Roasted Pork Tenderloin:
- 1 1/2 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/4 tsp pepper
Mango Cilantro Sauce
- 1 can coconut milk
- 1/2 onion
- 3 cloves of garlic
- 1 1/2 cups diced mango (I used frozen)
- 1/2 cup fresh cilantro, chopped into fine pieces.
- lime juice
- 2 Serrano peppers, minced.
- 1 tbsp grapeseed oil (or canola/vegetable oil)
- For the pork tenderloin, pre-heat the oven to 375°F. Combine the garlic powder, cumin, paprika, cinnamon, cayenne, salt, and pepper in a small bowl and spread onto the pork tenderloin until all surfaces are covered.
- Place tenderloin in a roasting pan and roast in the pre-heated oven for 40-45 minutes, or until the internal temperature is at least 145°F. Allow to rest outside the oven for 5-10 minutes before slicing.
- While the pork is roasting (probably about 20 minutes before done), prepare the sauce. In a small pot over medium heat, add the onion, garlic, salt and grapeseed oil. Stir until the onions are fragrant and semi-translucent, about 3-5 minutes.
- Add the coconut milk, mango, and the Serrano peppers. Allow this to simmer until reduced by at least 1/3 and thickened, about 10 minutes.
- Remove from the heat and add the cilantro and lime juice. Wait for the cilantro to wilt and then transfer mixture to a blender (once cooled slightly). Pulse until the mango chunks are smooth and the cilantro is well incorporated–about 30 seconds to 1 minute. You can also use an immersion blender for this step if preferred.
- Transfer back to the stove to warm until the tenderloin is ready. Slice the rested pork tenderloin, and top with sauce. Enjoy!
Wine Pairing: While I’ll admit, I actually decided to make rum runners instead for this dish to get the full beach bar experience from my couch, I would say that an aromatic white wine, such as a chenin blanc would work nicely.