I find that when I want to cook with maple syrup, my mind is always drawn to pork. Sugar shacks make good business in the springtime with hunks of bacon roasted with the golden syrup served with stacks of flapjacks, and it makes a great marinade for fresh pork as well. Dill is an herb I don’t commonly associate with pork, but after making this recipe I think I’ll be using it a lot more with that particular meat. A gastrique is a type of basic sweet and sour sauce, or glaze, and commonly made with sugar or honey, and some fruit-based vinegars like sherry, or apple cider like in this recipe. It goes very well with the leaner pork tenderloin.
2 whole pork tenderloins, trimmed of all fat and silverskin
1 tbsp salt
2 tbsp maple syrup
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
2 tbsp fresh dill, chopped finely
1 tsp ground black pepper
¼ cup maple syrup
½ cup apple cider vinegar
to taste salt and pepper
1. Season the pork tenderloins with the salt and place in a casserole. Mix the maple syrup, Dijon, dill, and black pepper together, then pour the marinade over the pork, massaging it into the meat. Cover and place in the refrigerator for at least one, and up to 4 hours.
2. Preheat the oven to 400°F.
3. Take the tenderloins out of the fridge and place on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Roast in the hot oven for ten minutes, then flip them and roast for an additional ten minutes or until an internal thermometer plunged into the center read 150°F. Remove and rest for ten minutes, covered.
4. Meanwhile, make the gastrique. In a sauce pot on a medium heat, bring the maple syrup to a low simmer and cook for about five minutes, or until slightly caramelized. Add the vinegar and stir frequently as it cooks for another ten minutes, or until the sauce coats the back of a spoon. Season with salt and pepper and remove from the heat.
5. Slice the pork tenderloin and arrange on a platter. Drizzle with some of the gastrique, and serve the rest on the side.