Monday, May 20, 2013

Slow Cooker Hoisin Pork Tenderloin

Here's the deal. My friend Teresa is trying to kick my butt into shape. Somehow she has convinced me to ride a bike to work with her. She does this a lot in the spring/summer... me? I've accompanied her twice in the past two weeks and plan on trying to kick it up to twice or three times a week. Until she convinced me to do this, I could not remember the last time I had been on a bike (well besides the stationary ones at the gym). I thought back and I really think it was the summer after my first semester in college when I biked over to my friend Jennifer's house. That was like 10 years ago!?!

I'm beginning to really appreciate the saying "just like riding a bike". Somehow, I had not forgotten how to peddle, shift gears, or stop from moving. My leg muscles, on the other hand, forgot how to function the day following a bike ride. Wow-sers! Ow-sers! And my bottom... I had to tenderly sit down for the next few days.

But truthfully, it felt good to be outside and stretching my muscles. I had been to complacent lately with working long hours and not getting myself to work out. This really helping me out. You know the best thing about riding a bike to work? You have to bike home too. No take backs, sheets, or give-ups. You gotta get back on it at the end of the day and push through.

For all this bike riding, I need some extra protein to feed my muscles. This pork tenderloin in the slow cooker is great. The Asian flavor of hoisin sauce and chili paste is great. The pork is tender and ready when you get back to the apartment. Serve it up with a baked potato and broccoli and you will have a filling and nutritious meal to refuel you for the next ride.

Hoisin Pork Tenderloin (adapted from Rachael Ray)
2 garlic cloves, smashed
1/2 cup hoisin sauce
1 tbsp freshly grated ginger
1/2 tbsp chili paste (like Sambal Oelek)
1/2 tbsp dry sherry
1/2 tbsp low sodium soy sauce
1 tsp dark sesame oil
1 1/2 lb pork tenderloin
1 tbsp cornstarch
1/4 cup cold water

Coat crockpot with cooking spray.

Whisk together the garlic, hoisin, ginger, chili paste, sherry, soy sauce and sesame oil. Place the pork in crockpot and pour the sauce over it. Cook on low for 8-10 hours (or high 4-5 hours).

Remove the pork from the crockpot and let rest until ready to slice.

Dissolve the cornstarch in the cold water. Turn the crockpot to high and whisk in the cornstarch solution. Heat until thick.

Serve the pork topped with the hoisin sauce.

Serves 3-4.

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