Sunday, April 22, 2012

 Gorgonzola, Pork and Fennel (or Anise):
Cooking with Weird Ingredients to make Edible Awesome

8 Thin sliced pork tenderloin or thinly cut pork cutlets
2-3 Tbs extra-virgin olive oil
4 Tbs Sambuca (Italian anise-flavored liquor)
2 large fennel bulbs (or 4 anise bulbs) chopped into 1 inch pieces, fronds reserved for edible garnish
6 oz Gorgonzola cheese, crumbled
6 Tbs light cream / half and half (more if you want it creamier)
2 Tbs chopped fresh sage (2 tsp if using dried sage) *Fresh tastes much better
2 Tbs chopped fresh thyme (2 tsp if using dried thyme) *Fresh tastes much better
Salt & Pepper to taste
Rinse pork and pat dry with paper towels. Heat 2 TBSP oil in a heavy bottomed skillet and add the pork, in batches if needed.  Cook over medium-high heat for about 6-8 minutes on each side until tender and cooked. I usually sear/brown it a little.  Remove from the skillet, set aside and keep warm.  Cook the remaining pork the same way, adding more oil when necessary.  Set all pork aside and keep warm by covering it.
Next stir in the Sambuca and increase the heat stirring constantly then add the fennel. Cover the dish but still stir frequently for about 8 minutes or until tender. If you need to, add more Sambuca. Once tender, remove the fennel and set aside. Keep warm by covering it.
Decrease the heat and add the Gorgonzola and half and half stirring constantly (because it will burn) until all the cheese has melted and the consistency is smooth.  Stir in the sage and thyme. 
Arrange and divide the pork among plates.  Top with the fennel and pour the sauce over.  Garnish with the reserved fennel fronds as they add another great flavor and texture.  Serve Immediately.
The dish goes well with fresh steamed asparagus and rice or quinoa.
**Special thanks to my dear friend Courtney for sharing the original recipe with me. 
Gorgonzola, Sambuca, Sage & Thyme 
Fennel bulbs