Pork Medallions With Squash and Greens

31/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
12 ounces peeled and pre-cut butternut squash (may substitute 1 pound delicata squash, peeled, cut in half, seeded and then cut crosswise into 1/2-inch-wide crescents)
6 to 8 sage leaves, coarsely chopped, plus more for (optional) garnish
1 cup fresh apple cider
2 teaspoons sherry vinegar
1/2 teaspoon kosher or sea salt, divided, plus more to taste
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
2 pounds pork tenderloins, trimmed of silver skin and excess fat
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
4 large cloves garlic, cut into very thin slices
8 ounces greens, such as collard, kale, rainbow or mustard
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
2 to 4 tablespoons good-quality cider vinegar or red-wine vinegar

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large cast-iron or heatproof skillet over medium heat. Add the squash, chopped sage, apple cider, sherry vinegar and 1/2 cup water, season with 1/4 teaspoon of the salt. Stir to combine, then increase heat to medium-high; bring to a boil and cook for about 5 minutes.

Transfer skillet to oven and cook for about 20 minutes or until cider has reduced to a glaze and squash is fork-tender. Transfer to stove top; taste and season mixture with salt and pepper as needed.

While squash is in oven, Cut the trimmed tenderloins into evenly sized medallions about 11/2 inches thick; shape them to a uniform size and season with salt and pepper; place on a plate.

Heat 1 tablespoon of oil and the butter in a large saute pan or skillet over low heat until butter has melted. Add the garlic and cook, stirring constantly, for 2 to 3 minutes, until slices are golden brown. Use a slotted spoon to transfer garlic to a small dish. While garlic is cooking, wash and dry the greens. Cut out and discard any tough center veins and stems, if desired. Tear or shred leaves.

Increase heat to medium and add greens to saute pan or skillet used to cook garlic. Cook for 3 to 5 minutes, just until wilted; use tongs to keep greens moving. Add the crushed red pepper flakes and 1/4 teaspoon of salt, stirring to combine. Return garlic slices to pan or skillet and mix to incorporate. Sprinkle with the vinegar to taste, then transfer to a bowl.

Heat the remaining 11/2 tablespoons of oil in same pan or skillet over medium heat. Add medallions and cook for 2 to 3 minutes on each side until nicely browned. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook for another 2 to 3 minutes, or until internal temperature of pork registers 150 on an instant-read thermometer. Return garlic and greens to pan or skillet, just to warm through.

When ready to serve, place a serving of greens, some squash and some pan juices on each plate, with a few medallions. Garnish with sage leaves, if desired; serve hot.

Makes 4 servings.


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