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Recipe for Mexican spiced pork tenderloin with pickled onions and cabbage

Sally Pasley Vargas for the Boston Globe

Serves 4 with leftovers


1cup distilled white vinegar
1cup water
cup sugar
1teaspoon salt
2jalapenos, seeded and thinly sliced
1large white onion, thinly sliced
½head red cabbage, thinly sliced (5 packed cups)
½cup chopped fresh cilantro

1. In a saucepan over medium heat, combine the vinegar, water, sugar, and salt. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally to dissolve the sugar. Add the jalapenos and onion and return to a boil; simmer for 30 seconds.

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2. Transfer to a large heatproof bowl and leave to cool. Add the cabbage and cilantro, and toss well. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour. Set aside 2 cups for the tacos.


3tablespoons slivered almonds, finely chopped
2tablespoons ancho chili powder
1teaspoon dried oregano
1teaspoon dried cumin
1teaspoon sugar
½teaspoon salt
1clove garlic, finely chopped
3tablespoons orange juice
Grated rind of 2 oranges
2tablespoons olive oil
3pork tenderloins

1. In a bowl, stir together the almonds, chili powder, oregano, cumin, sugar, and salt until blended. Stir in the garlic, orange juice, orange rind, and olive oil to make a paste.

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2. Set the oven at 425 degrees. Oil a rimmed baking sheet.

3. Rub the tenderloins all over with the spice paste. Transfer to the baking sheet. Roast for 16 to 20 minutes or until a meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part registers 145 degrees.

4. Transfer to a cutting board and tent with foil; rest 10 minutes. Set aside 1 pork tenderloin for the tacos. Slice the remaining pork on the diagonal. Drain the cabbage mixture and serve with the pork. Sally Pasley Vargas

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