At the beginning of the year our family set a goal for 2018. Experts will tell you that successful goals are specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and timely. We decided to set one that would fit all of these parameters. Here it is: Each month we would be intentional to set a date and go to a restaurant that we had never been before.
Pecan and Cornbread Crusted Pork Tenderloin
- 3/4 cup Georgia pecan halves
- 1 1/4 cup crumbled cornbread or corn muffin
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped garlic
- 2 (1 pound each) pork tenderloins
- Salt and pepper
- 3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a food processor, combine pecans and cornbread and process until pecans are finely chopped. Melt butter in medium-size skillet over moderate heat. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Stir in the pecan mixture to blend with butter and garlic. Set aside to cool slightly.
Pat pork dry and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place in an oiled shallow baking pan. Spread mustard thickly over tenderloins and pat crumb mixture onto mustard.
Roast in middle of oven 15 minutes. Tent pork loosely with foil to prevent crust from burning and continue to roast until thermometer inserted diagonally into center of meat registers 155 degrees — about 15 minutes longer. Let meat stand 10 minutes before slicing.
Balsamic Glazed Brussels Sprouts
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 bag frozen brussels sprouts
- 3 slices bacon chopped
- Sea salt and pepper, to taste
- ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
- ¼ cup water
Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat; add the bacon and cook until lightly browned. Fold in the sprouts and sauté until slightly brown; season with salt and pepper. Pour in balsamic vinegar and water and turn down to medium low heat. Cover skillet with a lid and steam until tender. Serve immediately.
Specific: Our choice can be any type of restaurant at any price point as long as the majority of the group hasn’t been. Each month a different family member gets to choose where we go.
Measurable: We will visit 12 new restaurants in 2018. Sounds like a win-win to me.
Realistic: Darrell and I don’t go out to eat much but when we do it seems we visit our same favorite restaurants every time. So this goal forces us out of our comfort zone and in to trying something new which is always a good thing.
Timely: Going once a month is doable and allows us to work around everyone’s schedule easily. We just send out a group text and decide on a date.
One of our family members, who shall remain nameless to protect the innocent, gave us a name: Open Minds Open Mouths Supper Club. If you’re a member, you are allowed to use the acronym, OMOMSC. This just allows for easier communication between the members. Genius, I say.
You might be thinking this is the craziest thing you’ve ever heard of but these past three months have been so much fun for us. We’ve eaten some really good food and made some great memories. We look forward each month to time we spend together as a family. I say that’s a resolution worth keeping!
The following recipes are delicious and would be great served together. The Balsamic Brussels Sprouts might be out of your food comfort zone but as I’m finding out, that’s not always a bad thing.
Crevolyn Wiley is a Gainesville resident with her first published cookbook “Cooking with Crevolyn” available at J&J Foods. She can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.