Melissa Joulwan built out her Well Fed brand from Austin before heading to Vermont two years ago for another of life’s adventures, but the bestselling paleo author will be back in town this week for a book talk and signing.
Her latest book is called “Well Fed Weeknights: Complete Paleo Meals in 45 Minutes or Less” and picks up where the first two Well Fed books left off: That moment when you get home from work and want to be eating dinner as soon as possible. She’ll be talking about tips and strategies to help you do that at an event at 7 p.m. Nov. 9 at Book People, 603 N. Lamar Blvd.
Pork Medallions with Blackberry Compote and Cauliflower Purée
Pork and apples are a classic combination, so I wanted to diverge from the familiar path for something spicier, moodier and a little syrupy. Blackberries are sweet enough and bring a hint of rose, cedar and clove mixed with the berriness. When you apply a touch of heat and acid, they acquiesce to become a luxe liquid that’s somewhere between a sauce and a glaze. Make a perfect bite — cauliflower mash, pork and berry compote on the fork all at once — and let the contrasting and complementary textures roll around your tongue.
— Melissa Joulwan
For the cauliflower purée:
1 large head cauliflower
2 Tbsp. ghee
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
For the compote:
1 Tbsp. ghee
2 cups blackberries
1 tsp. arrowroot powder
1 tsp. lemon juice
1/4 tsp. powdered ginger
For the pork medallions:
1 tsp. extra-virgin olive oil
1 1/2 lb. pork tenderloin
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. ground black pepper
Heat the oven to 250 degrees.
Steam the cauliflower: Place 1 cup water in a medium saucepan and bring it to a boil. While it heats, coarsely chop the cauliflower. Add the cauliflower to the pan, cover, return to a boil, then steam it until very tender, 10 to 15 minutes. Check it occasionally and add more water, if necessary.
Meanwhile, make the compote. In a small saucepan, warm the ghee over medium heat for 2 minutes. In a medium bowl, toss the berries with the arrowroot powder, then add the berries, lemon juice, ginger and salt to the pan. Cook over low heat until the liquid is syrupy and some of the berries have collapsed, about 10 minutes.
While the compote cooks, cook the pork. Warm the oil in a large, nonstick skillet over medium-high heat for 2 minutes. While it heats, cut the tenderloin into 1/2-inch-thick medallions. Season them on both sides with the salt and pepper. Add half the pork to the pan and cook undisturbed 3 minutes; flip and cook the other side, 3 minutes. Transfer the cooked pork to a plate and cover with foil to keep it warm in the oven while you cook the remaining pork.
Add the ghee, salt and pepper to the steamed cauliflower and purée with a stick blender until very smooth.
To serve, place pork medallions on a bed of cauliflower purée and top with berry compote. Serves 2 to 4.
— From “Well Fed Weeknights: Complete Paleo Meals in 45 Minutes or Less” by Melissa Joulwan (Greenleaf, $24.95)