I wasn't so sure. A big part of me didn't think I did because the word fig doesn't sound very appetizing, but I've heard people talk about how sweet and delicious they are so I decided I was at least open to trying them. I just got the most amazing new cookbook from Williams Sonoma (thanks to wedding gift cards! whoot!) called Eat Well, and I had book marked a bunch of pages (of course), so when I was trying to decide what to make when Jason came over for dinner on Wednesday, Steve suggested we each open the book to a bookmarked page and pick whichever recipe sounded better. I opened to pork tenderloin with fig, he opened to some pumpkin quinoa dish. I won.
This is definitely one of my favorite and probably most impressive meals I've made, but it was actually super easy! Once we decided, I of course had to figure a salad to go with it, so here's what we ended up with!
*Dried mission fig, chopped
*Unsweetened dried cherries
*A generous helping of goat cheese on top
*1.5:1 Red wine vinegar and olive oil
*1-2 sprigs rosemary, stems discarded, finely chopped
*Drizzle honey dijon
*Drizzle plain ole honey
Pork tenderloin with fig:
*12 dried mission figs, stemmed and halves
*1.5 cups dry red wine
*1.25 lb pork tenderloin
*Salt and pepper to taste
*3 sprigs fresh thyme or rosemary
*1 tbs fig jam (I couldn't find it so I used fig butter)
*1 tsp lemon zest
Preheat oven to 400. Place figs and wine in a small sauce pan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low and simmer for 5 min. Remove from heat and let stand for 15 min. Drain figs and reserve wine.
Pat pork dry, trim away fat, season with salt and pepper.
Season a cast iron skillet with olive oil and place over medium heat. Add pork and brown on all 4 sides (approx 5 min total). Arrange figs and herbs around pork and bake for 18-25 min when the meat reaches 155 degrees F (I cooked mine for 21 minutes and it came out PERFECT. Also, I cut the tenderloin in half to fit comfortable in the skillet).
Transfer tenderloin and figs to a platter, cover with tin foil and let rest for 10 min. Add wine, jam, and lemon zest to cast iron and bring to a boil over medium-high heat stirring often for 4-5 min. Remove and discard herbs.
Slice pork diagonally approx 1/2 inch thick. Arrange figs around pork and spoon sauce on top.