If I invite you to dinner at my house (so, if we’ve ever met, because I invite EVERYONE to dinner at my house), there’s a 70% chance I’ve never made the dish I’m serving before. Every “hostess tip list” says this is a terrible idea, lest you screw up/it takes too long/you stress yourself out. I say to hell with that – if my friends are there, even falling flat on my face is fun.
But most of the time, I don’t – because I have my own tricks. 1. I always have an appetizer. And let’s be clear, that “appetizer” can be as simple as straight-up cheese or chips and salsa. In fact, if you actually show up on time, you’re probably making the munchie plate. Anyone can unwrap cheese, and everyone feels more at home when they help. (Plus, I totally expected you to be late.) 2. Have a back pocket plan. I can whip up a pretty fantastic pasta with marinara sauce in less than 10 minutes, which covers basically every disaster ever.
And let’s be clear – this trial run? Won a gold medal. This pork tenderloin was so good half of us ate dinner standing, because we forgot to leave the island. We ate the “leftovers” with our hands as the night continued – still never leaving the island. Topped with maple bourbon pumpkin butter and served with roasted Brussels Sprout quinoa bake, the only falling you’re doing is in love.
- 1 package (2) pork tenderloin
- 3/4 cup maple syrup
- 1 t ground ginger
- 3-4 garlic cloves, crushed and minced
- 3 T Dijon mustard
- 2 T olive oil
- Salt and pepper
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Mix everything (except tenderloin) together in a small bowl.
- Lay tenderloin on a baking rack with a baking sheet underneath. (You can lay it right on the sheet, but it’s harder to flip.)
- Brush both sides with 1/2 the glaze and roast for 20 minutes.
- Pull meat out and brush with remaining glaze. Bake 10-15 minutes more, until thickest part of tenderloin registers 155 degrees.
- Tent with aluminum foil and let the meat rest 10 minutes before cutting.
Serves 6 – no, really, the 6 of us devoured this. Conventional serving sizes may tell you otherwise, but trust me on this.