Easy Marinated Pork Recipes for Back to School Dinner

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I’ve mentioned many a time that pork is my favorite meat these days. We don’t have pigs on the farm so it’s a real treat when I get a chance to create meals around pork. I want to show you how wonderfully versatile marinated pork can be. I bought a Smithfield® Garlic and Herb Pork Tenderloin the last time I was in Walmart and I made two yummy meals – each with five ingredients or less. Both would work for a family and neither one takes longer than 2o minutes to bake once you’ve cooked the pork. You will be all set for a busy back to school dinner and one of them is portable for those nights when you are running from school to sports to home and back again.

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Both marinated pork recipes use items you probably already have in your refrigerator -cheese, Dijon mustard, barbecue sauce, pizza dough in a can and pears. They are kid friendly and you can play around with the ingredients, for example –  you could just as easily use apples as pears but since I have an abundance of fresh picked pears from my neighbor’s orchard I’m using them everywhere I can. Pizza is a very personal food so it can be customized any way you or your kids like. I’ve just provided the base recipe.

So join me as I take one marinated pork loin filet and turn it into two easy to prepare yet really yummy meals. Before making either recipe the pork loin does need to be cooked but that doesn’t take long at all and is very easy to do. It’s something that can be done early in the day and put aside. That way you have a cooked piece of pork to use in recipes over the next few days.

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Preheat the oven to 350°. Then heat a heavy bottomed pan over medium high heat. (I used a cast iron pan.) When the pan is hot add about a teaspoon of canola oil and swirl it around the pan. Add the loin and let cook for 5 minutes, turn the loin over and put it into the hot oven and let it roast for 15 – 20 minutes. Let the meat rest and you can go from there! The roast will be medium rare at this point but since you are cooking the meat further in other recipes don’t worry if it is pinkish.

The first recipe up – pizza!

Who doesn’t love pizza?

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Barbecued Pork Pizza

Serves 4 – 6

1 can pizza dough or pizza dough for one pizza
1 1/2 cups shredded 4 cheese blend or other shredded cheese of your choice
1 cup Smithfield® Garlic and Herb Pork loin cut into thin strips
1/3 cup barbecue sauce

Preheat oven to 425°
Prepare a baking sheet with either a silicone mat or spray it with cooking spray. Roll out the pizza dough on the prepared pan.

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Spread the barbecue sauce over the dough leaving a small margin all around.
Distribute the strips of Smithfield® pork over the barbecue sauce.
Sprinkle the cheese over the top of the pork.
Bake in the preheated oven for 15 – 20 minutes until the cheese is melted and just starting to brown.
Let the pizza sit for about 3 – 5 minutes before cutting and serving

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I served this with a simple, fresh from the garden, cucumber and tomato salad. I tossed in a few raisins just because. I also put anchovies on the hubby’s half of the pizza because according to him it’s not pizza without those salty little fish. I will not comment as to my opinion as to them.

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I will tell you that the pizza was really yummy! The pork had a delicious, rich flavor thanks to being marinated in the garlic and herbs. It paired very well with the slightly sweet barbecue sauce. The four cheese blend (cheddar, Monterrey Jack, provolone, mozzarella) was a wonderful complement to the pair. I will neither confirm nor deny that there was cold pizza for lunch today.

Ah-hem.

The second recipe takes just a little more time to put together but it’s a lot of fun! The kids can even help make them. Another bonus – it’s portable which makes it perfect for on the go dinners. Not to mention to send in for lunch. I guess you all know what the hubby is eating for his midday meal, don’t you?

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Pork, Pear and Cheese Roll Ups

PRINT THIS RECIPE

(It seems I can only have one Easy Recipe Box unless I pay for a subscription so I present this one the old fashioned way for printing.)

Serves 3 – 4

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1 can of pizza dough or 1 recipe of pizza dough
1/2 cup shredded cheese
1 large ripe pear, peeled, cored and cut into slices
1 cup cooked Smithfield® Garlic and Herb pork loin cut into strips
2 TBS Dijon mustard

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Preheat the oven to 425°
Prepare a baking sheet by either spraying with cooking spray or covering with a silicon mat
Roll out the pizza dough and cut into 8 pieces.
Take one piece of dough and roll it out with a rolling pin
Spread some Dijon mustard on the dough.
Sprinkle on some cheese.
Add a couple of pieces of pear and some of the strips of pork
Sprinkle with more cheese
Carefully roll up the dough being sure to make sure the bottom is sealed.

If you cannot see the video you can watch it on YouTube HERE

Bake for 15 minutes then remove and sprinkle with any remaining cheese.
Bake for 5 more minutes.

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Let sit for 5 minutes before serving.

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I served these for lunch today and we really enjoyed them. We both love pairing meat with fruit and a bit of cheese never hurts anything. The pears were nice and soft and the cheese was all melty in the nooks and cranies. The combination was truly delicious. I’ll be sending in the leftovers for his lunch the next couple of days. The outside had a nice crunch but the inside was nice and soft.

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He was a happy man. I always love when I can make something that he enjoys. And if it doesn’t take me forever in the kitchen – even better! Just think how great these would be to take in the car if you are in a hurry. They would work well at room temperature too so they are perfect to make and eat on the way.

So there you go – two easy and delicious meals made with Smithfield marinated pork that will allow you to get dinner on the table in no time at all. All with ingredients you probably already have on hand  – you just need to pick up some tasty Smithfield® Marinated Pork. There are many different varieties so the next time you are in Walmart look them over and imagine what you can do! I still have half of the loin left for other meals so I’m thinking up other great ideas for dinner.

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