Smothered Crispy Pork Cutlets with Cauliflower Mash

Smothered Pork

Entertaining. Is it in your repertoire? Do you do it?

I’m not talking about the play-legos-with-kids-for-hours or stand-up-and-sing-opera-for-an-audience type of entertaining (although kudos to you for doing both of those things).

I’m talking about making-food-and-feeding-it-to-people-in-your-home entertaining. For some reason, entertaining for dinner inspires a lot of fear (I get a crazy amount of frantic, desperate emails asking for tips and strategies on entertaining).

I’ve been wanting to beef up my entertaining recipes just for this reason. To help you.

So that if you find yourself in a position to host a nice-ish dinner for a group of people, you can do so with confidence and dare I say, a bit of swag.

If you want to know the honest truth, I want you ending the evening feeling like a total rock star.

Smothered Pork

Today’s recipe is perfect for holiday entertaining. Not only can several components of the dish be made ahead of time (see the notes in the recipe) but it is quite pretty…and the taste-factor is off the charts.

Using a pork tenderloin, you simply take the slices and pound them slightly so they are thinner (this helps them cook faster and more evenly!), bread them lightly in seasoned flour and brown them up in a little bit of butter and olive oil.

The sauce comes together in a snap and is so luxurious and tasty that you might need to hide yourself in the pantry if you need a couple extra spoonfuls (always in the name of quality control, right?).

Cauliflower mash makes a wonderfully unique and delightful substitute for mashed potatoes – but you could certainly sub in classic garlic mashed potatoes in this recipe (do promise me you’ll give cauliflower mash a try soon, though).

All in all, my family had no trouble agreeing that the tender pork smothered in the rich, tasty sauce makes for an absolutely incredible, stunning meal (although I think my kids’ exact words were something like “mom, this rocks”).

If you want a few ideas of side dishes that would pair perfectly with this meal, I’ve got your back (and don’t be afraid to assign the side dishes out to guests; if you provide the main dish and dessert, they’ll be more than happy to oblige I’m sure).

What To ServeSkillet Green Beans
Spinach Salad with Sweet-Spicy Nuts, Apples, Feta and Bacon
Lion House Dinner Rolls

Dessert:
Pomegranate Cheesecake {This can be made a day or two in advance}
Creme Brûlée {This can also be made several days in advance}
Decadent Chocolate Cake with Whipped Chocolate Frosting {Gluten-Free; can be made a day in advance and frosted}

Smothered Pork

Also, feel free to check out the Albertsons blog for other holiday entertaining helps and ideas. And while we’re at it, here are a few of my other favorite main dish recipes for entertaining:
Tuscan Garlic Chicken
Stuffed Chicken Marsala
Roasted Maple Glazed Pork Tenderloin with Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes
Maple Pecan Crusted Salmon

One Year Ago: Chocolate Chip Toffee Blondie Mix in a Jar with Free Printable Tag {Sugar Rush Gift Edition #2}
Two Years Ago: 15 Top Cheesecake Recipes
Three Years Ago: Sesame Noodles with Peanut Sauce

Smothered Crispy Pork Cutlets with Cauliflower Mash

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Ingredients:

Pork:

  • 2 pounds pork tenderloin(s), trimmed of excess fat
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter

Sauce:

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 8 ounces baby bella mushrooms, stems removed and discard, mushrooms halved
  • 1 medium shallot, finely minced
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 3 cups low-sodium beef broth or stock
  • 1 cup half-and-half
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

Cauliflower Mash:

  • 2 heads cauliflower, florets
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons sour cream
  • ½ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. For the pork, slice the tenderloins into ½-inch pieces. Lightly pound with a mallet or the bottom of a small saucepan inbetween pieces of plastic wrap or inside a thick resealable Ziploc bag until each pieces is about ¼-inch thick.
  2. Combine the flour, salt and pepper in a shallow dish. Dredge each piece of pork in the flour mixture on both sides. In a large, 12-inch skillet, heat the butter and olive oil over medium heat until hot and shimmering.
  3. Add the pork in a single layer (you may need to do this in batches), leaving a bit of space between each piece, and cook for 3-4 minutes on each side until just cooked through (will register 145 degrees F on an instant-read thermometer). Transfer to a plate and repeat with the remaining pork (adding a little extra butter and olive oil if the skillet is dry). Cover the pork lightly with a lid or aluminum foil to keep warm.
  4. Once the pork has all been cooked and transferred out of the skillet, return the skillet to medium heat and add the 1 tablespoon oil and 1 tablespoon butter for the sauce. Add the mushrooms, shallot and garlic. Cook, stirring often, until the mushrooms have softened and are beginning to brown, about 6-8 minutes.
  5. Stir in the flour and cook for 1-2 minutes, stirring constantly. The flour should take on some brown color and the mixture should sizzle a bit. Gradually pour in the stock, about ½ cup at a time, deglazing the pan and scraping up any browned bits on the bottom. Continue adding the stock, whisking constantly to avoid lumps and bring the mixture to a simmer. Stir in the half-and-half. Simmer for 5-6 minutes until the sauce has thickened slightly.
  6. Transfer the pork to a platter and pour the sauce over the top (some can be reserved to be served separately). Sprinkle with the fresh parsley. Serve the smothered pork over mashed potatoes or cauliflower mash.
  7. For the cauliflower mash, clean and trim the large stems off the heads of cauliflower. Cut the florets into pieces. Boil the cauliflower in a large pot of water until very tender, about 8-10 minutes. Drain off the water and lay the cauliflower pieces on several layers of paper towels. Pat dry until very little moisture remains (do so quickly as you want the cauliflower warm when blending). Add the cooked cauliflower to a food processor, blender or use a large bowl and an immersion blender. Toss in the butter, sour cream, Parmesan cheese and salt and pepper to taste (start with ½ teaspoon each and add more if needed). Process until thick and smooth.

Notes:

The pork can be made ahead of time and kept in a single layer in a baking dish in a warm oven (set to about 170 degrees) for up to an hour. Also the cauliflower mash can be made several days in advance, stored in the refrigerator, and warmed in the microwave or in a baking dish in the oven for serving.

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Recipe Source: from Mel’s Kitchen Cafe (inspired and changed from my favorite smothered chicken recipe)