Aren’t you impressed by the title ALONE on this!?!? Especially coming from the gal who has shown no other talents than insanely delicious baked goods? Seriously, cooking is my passion…and this happened.
For SERIOUS, it turned out so so SO good!!! I should back up a bit and note that we are apparently going to be hit by some sort of insane Snowmaggeddon or Snowpocalypse or some equally terrifying word that includes the word snow, and it’s coming sometime around Thursday. So, naturally, like any prepared single gal, I planned out some meals, went to the store, and stocked up…..on wine. And some random veggies. I’m totally set! I also decided to start cooking like a fiend, because there is nothing I hate more than having to tackle my driveway (usually by shovel because my stupid snowblower refuses to work on any sort of regular basis) then come in and cook. If I don’t have some sort of already prepared meals on snowdays, I end up living off of tortilla chips and salsa, raw pecans, and whatever protein I can scrounge up…usually some stray slices of bacon I find in a baggie in the bottom of my freezer. Oh and coffee, lots and LOTS of coffee. So I went ahead and got all productive!
As a side note, this recipe looks really complex. It’s NOT. I promise….it’s mostly just playing with getting the timing right. Also, this meal is seriously date worthy. It is freaking delicious and totally impressive. Cook it up! Enjoy it with your spouse, your partner, your significant other, or with yourself…..standing over the island in your kitchen, glass of wine in hand, singing really loudly along to this song. I mean, it’s just a suggestion, I’ve never EVER done that…
Step 1: Marinate your Pork Tenderloin
- 1 pork tenderloin (average size….not gonna lie, I got it from my mom, and she bought in bulk, so I have no idea how much it weighed…)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon ground sage
- 2 sprigs of fresh rosemary (remove the leaves from the stem, don’t worry about chopping them up, you will remove the bulk of them from the pork prior to cooking)
- Place all ingredients in a plastic bag and smush everything around. Get it all good and coated.
- Let sit in the bag (I’d put it on a plate/shallow dish in case it leaks) in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour, the longer the better!
Step 2: Roasting your veggies
- 1 large or 2 small spaghetti squash (cut lengthwise, seeds and inner strings removed)
- 2 large red peppers (seeds removed and cut into large chunks)
- 6-8 cloves of garlic (peeled)
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Place squash cut side down onto a baking sheet. Put into oven for 30-40 minutes, or until you push on the skin and it gives a little.
- Place red peppers and garlic cloves on another baking sheet. Drizzle with a bit of olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Mix them all up with your hands, get good and dirty! Place in oven for 20-30 minutes or until they start to brown a bit on the bottoms.
- Did you notice that you can have both of these bad boys going at once?!?! It gets better, just wait!
- Set the peppers aside for Step 4.
- When the spaghetti squash has cooled, grab a fork and get to forking. No really, scrape at the insides with a fork and it should pull away from the skin in shreds that resemble spaghetti. Be prepared to see those shreds flinging all over the place…and find them in random spots all over your counter.
Step 3: Cooking the pork!
- After marinating, remove pork from the bag. At this point, you will want to remove as much of the rosemary as possible. No one really likes biting down into an entire bit of rosemary….It gets kind of gross with your hands, but get after it!
- Place tenderloin into a shallow baking dish.
- Put into your 400 degree oven (right alongside your veggies if you have space and you want to!).
- Cook for 30-40 minutes, or until you hit 170 degrees using a meat thermometer (it depends on the thickness of your pork….hehe, gross.) Mine took about 35 minutes.
- LET IT REST WHEN YOU TAKE IT OUT!!!! For at least 10 minutes, otherwise you will cut into it and it will look like you have committed murder and your poor sad pork is the victim. You WANT it to keep all of its juices, so be patient!!
Step 4: Making your Red Pepper sauce
- Roasted peppers and garlic you made earlier
- 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 cup of liquid (chicken stock, water, wine…if that’s your thing, coconut water, etc.)
- 1, 6 oz. can of tomato paste
- Place your peppers and garlic into a food processor. (I suppose you could also use a blender…) Pulse until smoothly blended.
- Add in spices and tomato paste, pulse to combine.
- Add in liquid and blend until the sauce is the consistency you desire. I ended up putting in about a cup, and I used coconut water because I like the richness and touch of sweetness it added to the sauce. But live your life, do what you want!
- Transfer to a saucepan on medium/low heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes until it is warm and the flavors have had a chance to play! Stir it once in a while, and you might want to put a lid over it (NOT tightly) just in case it gets to bubbling all crazy. Sauce splatter on my stove really REALLY irks me.
Step 5: Assembling your masterpiece
- Layer squash, then some sauce, then some sliced pork, then more sauce. Salt and Pepper to taste.
- Make it look pretty, if you are into that.
- Or just toss it all in a bowl and stir it up.
- SMASH and enjoy. Seriously, I had to hide my leftovers so I didn’t eat ALL of it!
Don’t let the number of steps on this intimidate you. You CAN do it, it’s actually really easy……just a lot of oven action. Enjoy! Sending some Paleo food love that’s not in baked good form!