How is it possible that a little pork with prosciutto and sage, cooked in butter and oil, can taste like you are committing at least four of the seven deadly sins all at once?
This dish is most definitely fiddlely…from the annoying job of trying to separate the paper-thin prosciutto slices, to the pounding of each piece of pork until it resembles a piece of gauzy material. The thing is, and this is a very important announcement; it is worth it!
This was part and parcel of a very elaborate dinner I prepared before myself and the whole family left for Italy, and I wanted to celebrate in a big way (read the blog titled Italian Dinner to read more on the subject).
It was the dish that I had to hide from my son so as everyone would get a piece or two. It was so very good, and I encourage you to make it if you want to spend a lazy day with your kids, pounding meat with a mallet, and blanketing it in sage and Italian cured meat!
Makes for fun family time, and you get the reward of a great dinner.
You will need: 2 lbs pork tenderloin (buy 1 lb tenderloin), thickly sliced, big bunch of sage leaves (about 50), 1/2 lb prosciutto, 2 tbs unsalted butter, 4 to 6 tbs extra-virgin olive oil. Roll of wax paper cut into 4 x 4 ” squares (no need to be exact), wooden toothpicks.
1 – Lay a piece of wax paper on a chopping board and put a slice of tenderloin in the center. Cover with another piece of wax paper.
2 – Take the smooth side of a wooden mallet and pound the pork until it is very thin. Transfer it to a plate (in the wax paper), and continue until all the meat is pounded, and piled high on the plate.
3 – Time to assemble; take a piece of pork from the wax paper and lay a sage leaf in the middle, followed by a piece prosciutto smaller than the piece of pork. Fold in half so as the prosciutto is on the outside, and close pieces together with a toothpick (like you are stitching a piece of material). Set on a plate, and continue until the whole pile is done.
4 – Put saute pan on medium/high heat and add 2 tbs of oil and 1 tbs of butter. When it is hot, add an evenly spaced, single layer of the pork on the pan, and cook on both sides for about 2 minutes each.
5 – Continue to cook until all the meat is done, adding more oil and butter as needed.
I served this dish with a larger meal (type Italian Dinner in search box), but, this would go with rice, pasta, salad, or stand on its own as a knockout appetizer.