Pork tenderloin with lentil salad

Serve Maria Elia's exotically flavoured supper with some Middle eastern flat bread, quickly heated in a pan
By Mark Sargeant
Pork tenderloin with lentil salad
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 4
  • Cook Time: 10 minutes
  • Prep Time: 25 minutes
  • Effort: easy


For the pork

  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 tbsp sherry vinegar
  • 1 heaped tsp hot smoked paprika
  • 2 tbsp olive oil, plus extra for frying
  • 600 g pork tenderloin, trimmed of excess sinew

For the yogurt sauce

  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 60 ml tahini
  • 200 ml Greek yogurt
  • pinch ground cumin
  • 1 lemon, juice only

For the lentil salad

  • 50 g sultanas, roughly chopped
  • 1 x 250 g packet pre-cooked beluga or puy lentils
  • 2 spring onions, thinly and diagonally sliced
  • 1 celery, stick, peeled, thinly and diagonally sliced
  • 60 g almonds, roughly chopped, skin on
  • 1 handful coarsely chopped flat leaf parsley
  • 1/2 handful coarsely chopped mint
  • splash extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tbsp red wine vinegar, such as Forum cabernet sauvignon

Tips and Suggestions

You can also use pork chops instead of tenderloin. Just cook as above, allowing 4-5 minutes cooking time on each side, then allow to rest for a few minutes before serving.


1. For the pork: using a pestle and mortar, pound the garlic with a little sea salt until crushed, then stir in the vinegar, paprika and the 2 tablespoons of olive oil to form a paste.

2. Cut the pork into 2-3cm thick slices, then lay the slices on a board or work surface, cover with cling film and flatten into medallions, using the flat of the knife, until 1cm thick. Rub the garlicky paste into each slice of pork, covering completely, and set aside for about an hour (or overnight, in the fridge).

3. For the tahini yogurt sauce: crush the garlic with the salt. Stir in the tahini and 3 tablespoons of water, mixing well before adding the yogurt, cumin and lemon juice. Refrigerate unless using immediately.

4. For the lentil salad: Soak the sultanas in a small bowl of hot water for 5 minutes, then drain. Heat a little olive in a frying pan, tip in the lentils and heat through. Transfer to a bowl and mix with the remaining salad ingredients, using enough of the oil to taste and give sufficient dressing. Set aside.

5. To cook the pork, heat a little olive oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat, add the medallions, sprinkle over a pinch of salt and fry in batches for 3 minutes on either side. Serve with the lentil salad and tahini yoghurt sauce.

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