Monday, April 23, 2012


It's FOOD MATTERS PROJECT Monday! Week twelve of cooking from Mark Bittman's Cookbook. This week Melissa from The Faux Martha chose our recipes, Mostly Whole Wheat Baguettes or Real Whole Wheat Bread. I decided on making baguettes. This was a first for me and not only was it easy but tasty as well. When the baguette was finished I let it cool and then stuffed it with fresh herbs, mustard, and a pork tenderloin. Another 25 minutes in the oven and dinner was ready to go.

 I started by following Mark Bittman's recipe for mostly whole wheat baguettes. I like the addition of some all-purpose flour to the whole wheat flour, it makes the bread more flavorful and less dense. The dough takes a couple of minutes to make and then you let it rise until it doubles in size. It took about 1 1/2 hours.

When the dough has doubled in size you roll them out and shape them into baguettes. They need another rest to double in size again.

I sprinkled the top with fennel seeds and put them in the oven to cook.

After the baguettes had cooled I cut them in half, hollowed them out and put my tenderloin inside. The meat was browned first and then spread with a mustard-herb mixture.

Tied it together (I tried to tie it the way a butcher would but gave up) and back in the oven to finish cooking the tenderloin.

Our meat is more on the rare side which is how we like it but all you need to do is brown it a little longer and cook it in the oven a little longer if you like it medium.

There were so many yummy flavors going on in every bite. Sage, rosemary, fennel, garlic, and the delicious homemade baguette.

These made great sandwiches the next day, we sliced them and had them cold but heated would be even better.

For Mark Bittman's original whole wheat baguette recipe go to  Melissa's blog
and for all the other creative takes on his recipe check out The Food Matters Project


2 tsp. fresh chopped sage
2 tsp. fresh chopped rosemary
1/2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
2 cloves garlic, minced
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/4 tsp fennel pollen or ground fennel seed
1 TBSP. Dijon mustard
4 TBSP. extra virgin olive oil
1 pork tenderloin, trimmed of any fat
1 loaf crusty baguette

In a small bowl combine the minced sage, rosemary, pepper, garlic, 1 tsp. salt, 1/4 tsp. black pepper, fennel, and Dijon mustard.

Heat a pan over medium heat. Add 1 TBSP. of the oil. Cook the pork, turning occasionally, until golden on all sides, 8-10 minutes. Spread the herb mixture all over the pork and set aside.

Cut the baguette in half the long way and scoop out the soft insides. Brush the inside of the baguette with the remaining 3 TBSP. olive oil. Place the pork on the inside of the baguette so that the pork in completely enclosed. Trim off the excess ends on the bread. Tie at 1-2 inch intervals, with kitchen string.

Preheat an oven to 375~. Place the pork on a baking sheet and roast until done, 155 to 160~ when an instant read thermometer is inserted into the thickest part, 25 to 35 minutes.

Remove from oven, and let rest 10 minutes. Remove strings and cut into slices. Serve.

Serves 4

Recipe adapted from Joanne Weir 

Next week is Roasted Asparagus and White Bean Soup with Parmesan
Check out this invite!

Come for a Delta Asparagus Tasting

California Delta Asparagus Tasting
Slow Food Santa Barbara & Market Forays

Sunday April 29, 2012
TIME: 3 to 5 pm
LOCATION: 814 San Roque Road, Santa Barbara

An afternoon tasting of the best asparagus in the country,
served with suitable accoutrements from prosciutto to Hollandaise,
in the enjoyable company of fun-loving folks.  There will be wine and beer -
I will serve Sauvignon Blanc and wheat beer,
feel free to bring whatever label you think will go best.

WHY: Because asparagus from the California Delta is the very best and sweetest. (Honestly, it puts our local SB asparagus to shame.) Also, because Delta asparagus is under severe pressure from cheaper imports, and I feel that it deserves to be better known.

DETAILS: Asparagus is a perennial plant. In spring, the mother plant sends up shoots, the asparagus spears. Depending on the strength of the plant, the spears are either thick or thin. The thickest spears, "jumbo", are the juiciest, sweetest, and most highly prized.
A few weeks ago I had my first taste of this spring delicacy, and resolved to share it with my friends at the first opportunity. I have been in Northern California at the orchard this past week, and made contact with Roscoe Zuckerman, Stockton asparagus farmer.
I will be picking up jumbo asparagus from Roscoe's farm on my way back to Santa Barbara, and look forward to sharing it with you on Sunday.

Event Cost: $25 per person.

Reserve Now

If you can't join us Sunday but would like to order asparagus,
please e-mail me. $10 a share.


Jen said...

I made the bread but will have to try the baguette too. I cannot let my husband see what you did-he would come right over.

Lexi said...

Hi Jen, The baguette was great and I have to keep the meat eater in the family happy!

Margarita said...

Pork tenderloin in a baguette. Delicious!My boyfriend wanted pork tenderloin so bad but I said no when we were at the store. Darn, this is a good idea. This would have made him happy.

Lexi said...

Hi Margarita, This seemed like a healthy way to cook the meat and the bread fills you up so you really don't eat that much meat.

Evi said...

I'm not going to lie- I would never think to put a piece of pork inside a baguette. It looks delicious- something to make for our supper club sometime! =)

everydaymaven said...

Those baguettes sound awesome with the fennel seeds!!

Lexi said...

Hi Evi, It's kind of wild but so good. It was really good with the homemade baguette.

Lexi said...

Hi Alyssa, The fennel seeds were perfect with the pork and I had to find something to satisfy the meat eater in the family!