Apples and pork are a classic combination, and this recipe produces a rich, creamy sauce with the delicate aroma, taste, and texture of poached apples. The decadent sauce is delicious with roast pork or pork chops, and works with chicken as well.
champagne (preferably extra-dry (demi sec))
Granny Smith or Fuji apples (peeled and cored)
finely minced shallot
1 ½ cups
heavy (whipping) cream
minced fresh thyme leaves
pork tenderloins (trimmed and cut into 1-inch thick slices)
Unbleached all-purpose flour of Wondra instant flour
Calvados apple brandy (optional)
sprigs of fresh thyme (optional)
Place the champagne and cider in a small, non-aluminum saucepan and place over medium heat. Bring the mixture to a simmer.
Cut the apples in half and then cut each half into thirds or quarters. Add the apples to the champagne-cider mixture and reduce the heat to low. Cook until the apples are just tender, 5 to 10 minutes. Remove the apples with a slotted spoon and set aside in a small bowl.
Return the pan to the stove and reduce the liquid to 1/4 cup over high heat. Set aside.
In a 2-quart saucepan, heat the butter over medium heat. Add the shallots and cook until they soften, stirring occasionally, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the chicken stock, cream, champagne-cider reduction, thyme, and nutmeg, and cook over medium-low heat until the cream has reduced and thickened, about 30 minutes.
Add 4 or 5 wedges of cooked apples and roughly mash them into the sauce. Season to taste with salt and pepper, then add the remaining apples, keeping them intact. Keep the sauce warm while you sauté the pork.
Season the pork slices on both sides with salt and pepper. Place about a cup of the flour on a plate and lightly dip the slices of meat into the flour, coating both sides and shaking off any excess.
Heat a large skillet, preferably nonstick, over medium-high heat. When hot, add the oil and heat until hot but not smoking. Arrange the pork in a single layer in the pan (it may be necessary to do this in two pans or in batches). Cook the pork for 2 minutes on medium-high heat, then reduce heat to medium. Turn the meat and continue cooking until the pork is cooked through, 3 to 8 minutes. Transfer the meat to a warm platter and tent with foil.
Add the Calvados to the skillet, if using, and cook over high heat 1 or 2 minutes to deglaze the pan. Add the Calvados and any pan drippings to the apple cream sauce.
Divide the pork among four warm plates. Nap with the sauce and arrange several apple wedges atop the meat. Garnish each serving with fresh thyme, if desired. Serve immediately.
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