Pepita Crusted Pork Tenderloin over Vanilla Pumpkin-Pea Risotto with Goat Cheese & Crumbled Amaretti Cookies by Lauren


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Soft-Ripened Cheeses

* 1 cup ground pumpkin seeds
* 1 ½ teaspoons sweet paprika
* 1 ½ teaspoons unsweetened cocoa powder
* ½ teaspoon allspice
* 3 teaspoons salt, divided
* 3 teaspoons freshly cracked black pepper, divided
* 1 tablespoon olive oil
* 2, 1-lb. pork tenderloins
* 2 cups Arborio rice
* 3 tablespoons butter
* 2 shallots, finely diced
* ½ cup white wine
* 5 cups vegetable stock, warmed
* Half of a 15-ounce can of pumpkin
* 1 vanilla bean
* 1/3 cup crumbled Ile de France original goat cheese
* ¾ cup frozen peas
* Garnish: crushed Amaretti cookies


* Preheat oven to 365 degrees F. In a small bowl, combine the ground pumpkin seeds (pepitas), paprika, cocoa powder, allspice, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper. Rub the tenderloins with the olive oil and then coat thoroughly with the spice mixture. Bake for 30 – 35 minutes or until completely done in the center. Transfer to a cutting board and let the meat rest for 6 – 8 minutes before slicing.

* Meanwhile, in a large skillet, melt the three tablespoons of butter over medium-high heat. Cook the diced shallots in the butter until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the Arborio rice to the pan and toast for about 5 minutes. Scrape the seeds out of the vanilla bean.

* Add the wine and the vanilla bean seeds and pod to the pan and stir until the liquid has almost completely evaporated. Ladle about ½ cup of the warmed vegetable stock into the pan and stir until it has almost completely evaporated. Repeat this process of ladling in stock, about ½ cup at a time, until the stock has all been used and the risotto is thick, creamy, and completely cooked (about 20 minutes). Reduce the heat to low, and stir in the pumpkin, Ile de France goat cheese, and peas.

* Season with salt and pepper to taste. Transfer the vanilla pumpkin risotto to a serving dish and top with slices of the pepita crusted pork. Garnish with crumbled Amaretti cookies and serve right away. Enjoy!