This year has been full of unprecedented times and situations. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many families and individuals will be cooking at home this holiday season. That’s why we are bringing the dishes to you all month long in our Quarantine Kitchen series. We talked to twenty-three chefs who willingly shared some of their favorite dishes to prepare for the holidays. Stay tuned Dec. 1 through 24 on the blog as well as our social media channels for a new dish to feature in your home each day and let’s get cooking!
Chef William Dissen is the mastermind behind the food at three restaurants in three different cities in North Carolina. All of them have a strong connection to the farms where the food is sourced. Yes, they are farm-to-table restaurants, but it’s not just a trendy buzzword for Dissen. Sourcing food locally is a core value, and it means the food is seasonal, based on what’s available from farmers and artisan producers in the region.
Dissen’s Asheville restaurant is The Market Place. In Charlotte, his restaurant is Haymaker. Then there’s Billy D’s Fried Chicken at the N.C. Zoo in Asheboro. If you’re interested in how and why Dissen has pursued a passion for creating local and seasonal food, it’s worth checking out each restaurant’s website. The Market Place website even lists many of the farmers and producers who are the sources for the restaurant’s food.
For this holiday season, Dissen has shared a recipe for bacon-wrapped pork tenderloin.
- Bacon-wrapped Pork Tenderloin
- 2.5 pounds pork loin
- 1 pound smoked bacon, sliced into 16 strips
- Salt & pepper, to taste
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- Standard Brine
- 2 cups salt
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 bunch fresh thyme
- 6 garlic cloves
- 2 teaspoon black peppercorns
- 1½ gallon hot water
- Bacon-wrapped Pork Tenderloin
- For the Standard Brine – Using a two-gallon stockpot, and bring to a boil. Whisk to dissolve the sugar and salt. Allow to completely cool.
- Place the pork loin in the brine solution for two hours under refrigeration. Remove from the brine and rinse under cold water. Pat dry. (this can be done a day in advance)
- Using a sharp knife, remove the layer of fat and silver skin from the pork loin.
- Lay out a 2 x 2-foot piece of plastic wrap and shingle bacon strips in the center. (I recommend Benton’s Bacon.) Place the pork loin in the center of the bacon. Like rolling sushi, use the plastic wrap to fold bacon over pork loin and firmly roll forward to wrap bacon around the loin. Hold the sides of the plastic wrap and continue to roll forward to create a tight cylinder. Use butcher’s twine to tie the ends. Refrigerate overnight. (This helps to keep the bacon together while cooking.)
- The next day, remove the plastic wrap and tie the pork loin with butcher’s twine prior to roasting.
- Preheat oven to 450°F.
- Season pork lightly with salt and pepper. In a large sauté pan, heat olive oil over medium-high, Add the pork loin and cook, turning to crisp the bacon on all sides. Remove the pan from stove top and place into the oven. (If pan isn’t oven-safe, transfer pork to a sheet tray.) Cook for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the loin registers 140°F with a meat thermometer. Remove from the oven and allow to rest for 5-10 minutes before slicing.
Notes from the chef: I recommend to serve the pork loin with an Orange, Grand Marnier, and Cranberry Relish, or a savory Wild Mushroom & Thyme Pan Gravy.