QUICK FIX: Sweet, sour sauce gives pork tangy taste

Apricot jam and apple cider vinegar adds a sweet and tangy flavor to pork tenderloin.
TNS Apricot jam and apple cider vinegar adds a sweet and tangy flavor to pork tenderloin.

Here's an easy and delicious way to flavor pork tenderloin. It's a sweet and sour sauce made with apricot jam and apple cider vinegar, that adds a tangy flavor and takes only two to three minutes to make.

I thought barley would be a nice side dish but didn't want to spend a lot of time or another pot to cook it. So, using quick-cooking barley, I made the barley and green beans in the microwave oven. It's easier, minimizes cleanup and turns out the same as if made on the stove.

Helpful hints:

Any type of green vegetable such as broccoli florets or snow peas can be used instead of green beans.

Look for quick-cooking barley in the supermarket.

Orange marmalade can be used instead of apricot jam.

Shopping list:

To buy: ¾ pound pork tenderloin, 1 jar apricot jam, 1 bottle apple cider vinegar, 1 can olive oil spray, 1 jar Dijon mustard, 1 container fat-free chicken broth, 1 box quick cooking barley and ½ pound green beans

Staples: olive oil, salt and black peppercorns

Sweet and tangy sauced pork tenderloin

¼ cup apricot jam

2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

¾ pound pork tenderloin

Olive oil spay

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Mix apricot jam, apple cider vinegar and mustard together in a small bowl and set aside. Cut tenderloin into 1-inch slices and press with the back of a large spoon to about ½-inch thick. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat and spray with olive oil spray. Add pork slices and saute two minutes turn over and saute two more minutes, A meat thermometer should read 145 degrees. Saute another minute or two if needed. Remove pork to two dinner plates and sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste. Add the sauce to skillet and stir until jam melts and sauce begins to thicken about two to three minutes. Spoon sauce over pork slices.

Yield two servings.

Per serving: 290 calories (12 percent from fat), 4.0 g fat (1.2 g saturated, 1.5 g monounsaturated), 108 mg cholesterol, 36.2 g protein, 26.3 g carbohydrates, 0.5 g fiber, 190 mg sodium.

Green beans and barley

1 cup fat-free, no-salt-added chicken broth

½ cup quick-cooking barley

½ pound green beans cut into 1- to 2-inch pieces

2 teaspoons olive oil

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Place chicken broth and quick cooking barley in a large microwave safe bowl. Cover the bowl with a plate or plastic wrap. Microwave on high for five minutes. Remove bowl from microwave and add the green beans. Cover with the plate and microwave five more minutes. Remove from the microwave and keep the cover on the bowl. While you make the pork. Add oil and salt and pepper to taste and serve with the pork.

Yield two servings,

Per serving: 256 calories (19 percent from fat), 5.3 g fat (0.8 g saturated, 2.3 g monounsaturated), no cholesterol, 8.0 g protein, 47.0 g carbohydrates, 10.9 g fiber, mg 29 sodium.

Stovetop method if preferred:

Bring broth to a boil in medium-size saucepan over high heat and add barley and green beans. Reduce heat to medium-high and simmer 10 minutes, uncovered. Drain and add oil, and salt and pepper to taste.

Yield two servings.

Linda Gassenheimer is the author of more than 30 cookbooks, including her newest, "The 12-Week Diabetes Cookbook." Email her at LindaDinnerInMinutes.com.

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