Stuff It

Spinach & Sun-Dried Tomato Stuffed Pork Tenderloin

A concoction of creamy goat cheese, cream cheese and sour cream makes this dish ultra-savory.

1 tablespoon olive oil
2 cloves garlic
1 (10-ounce) package frozen spinach
1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes
1/2 cup goat cheese
1/2 cup cream cheese
1/2 cup sour cream
1 (2 – 3 pound) pork tenderloin
salt and pepper, to taste

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Sauté garlic and spinach in olive oil until nearly cooked through. Add in sun-dried tomatoes. Remove mixture from stove when spinach is cooked to taste.
2. In a separate bowl, combine goat cheese, cream cheese and sour cream. Add in spinach and sun-dried tomatoes.
3. Cut tenderloin open so that it lies flat. Pat the pork dry with a paper towel; then place on a baking sheet.
4. Spread filling across the pork; then roll the tenderloin up like a jelly roll, keeping the mixture inside. Secure open side of pork together with toothpicks or cotton strings.
5. Brush top of the pork with olive oil. Lightly salt and pepper both sides. Bake about an hour, until the internal heat of the pork is 155 degrees. (Begin checking internal temperature at about 40 minutes.) Serves 8 – 10.

Note: If any filling remains, use it to make savory crescent rolls. Using store-bought, prepared dough, press each triangle into a muffin tin, leaving triangle points to hang over side. Scoop a heaping tablespoon of mixture into center. Twist dough points to seal. Bake according to dough package instructions.

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Stuffed Jalapeño Peppers

Warning: These savory appetizers pack a spicy kick. They are a perfect pick-up dish for the big game or alongside grilled backyard burgers or steaks at the camp.

33 large jalapeño peppers
1 pound spicy sausage
1 bunch green onions
1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
or Worcestershire sauce
1/8 – 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1 pound thin-sliced bacon

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cut off tops of jalapeños and remove seeds and membrane from insides using an apple corer. Be careful not to poke holes in sides of peppers. Drain on paper towels. (We recommend wearing gloves for this spicy project.)
2. Brown the sausage in a saucepan.
3. In a food processor finely chop onions. Add browned sausage and process until meat is finely chopped.
4. Add cream cheese, balsamic vinegar and garlic powder. Process until combined.
5. Stuff peppers with the sausage mixture using a jerky shooter, pastry bag or small spoon.
6. Cover top of each pepper with one-half slice of bacon, using a toothpick to secure.
7. Place in jalapeño pepper cooker or custard cups, making sure that peppers remain upright.
8. Bake for 1 – 1 1/2 hours. The longer they bake, the milder the spiciness factor. Makes about 10 servings.


Lox and Cream Cheese Stuffed Cucumbers

An adaptation from a Sandra Lee original, these fancy no-bake apps are pretty enough to impress, but simple enough to throw together for a crowd.

2 medium-sized cucumbers
1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup sour cream
1 (3-ounce) package smoked salmon,  chopped into small pieces
3 – 4 green onions, diced
1/2 lemon, juiced
dash of cayenne pepper
salt and fresh ground pepper, to taste
1 bunch fresh dill, chopped

1. Using a vegetable peeler, peel along length of a washed and dried cucumber. (Leave every other section of peel to create stripes on the outside of the cucumber.)
2. Cut off cucumber ends and slice remaining portion into 1-inch rounds. Using a melon baller, scoop out the inner flesh from the top two-thirds of each cucumber slice. Do not scoop all of the way through. Set aside.
3. In a bowl, combine cream cheese and sour cream. Add in salmon, onions, lemon juice, cayenne pepper, salt, pepper and half of the chopped dill. Adjust seasonings.
4. Drain any excess liquid from cucumber slices. Transfer cream cheese mixture to a pastry bag with a star 8 tip. Pipe filling generously into each slice. Garnish with a sprig of dill. Serves 4.

Crabmeat Stuffed Flounder

This local classic hails from Market By The Bay on the Eastern Shore. Leftovers can be made into crab cakes.

2 tablespoons minced celery
2 tablespoons minced red bell pepper
2 tablespoons minced green onions
1 tablespoons butter
2 teaspoons Old Bay seasoning
1 – 2 dashes of Tabasco
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 cup Italian breadcrumbs
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 pound lump crabmeat
4 flounders, medium size
2 tablespoon melted butter
salt and pepper, to taste

1. Sauté celery, peppers and onions in butter until tender. Add seasoning, Tabasco, Worcestershire, breadcrumbs, mayonnaise and crabmeat. Combine. Cover and let rest in refrigerator at least 1 hour.
2. When ready to bake, preheat oven to 375 degrees. Place stuffing in flounder pouch*. Drizzle with butter. Salt and pepper outside of flounder.
3. Spray a shallow baking pan with cooking spray. Place fish in pan. Cover with foil. Bake for 25 minutes or until fish flakes very easily. Remove cover; bake another 5 minutes. Serves 4.

*Your fishmonger will gladly cut a flounder pouch for you, or slit the fish’s back to produce two pockets for stuffing.

Cajun Stuffed Chicken Breast

Mosley’s Meat Market sells these ready-to-bake lip-smacking entrees. Or, try out your own culinary skills and prepare them at home.

2 sticks butter
1 medium-sized onion, chopped
1 large red pepper, chopped
1 large bell pepper, chopped
1 pound Andouille sausage
1 pound crawfish tails
1 (14-ounce) box Pepperidge Farm cornbread stuffing mix
chicken broth
4 medium chicken breasts, with pocket cut
Cajun seasoning, to taste (Mosley’s uses Slap Ya Mama Cajun Seasoning)

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Sauté onion and peppers in butter. Add sausage and crawfish tails. Cook over medium heat, about 10 minutes.
2. Prepare cornbread mix. Add sautéed ingredients to the cornbread. Moisten with chicken broth until medium
consistency. (It should be moist enough so that it can be packed into chicken breasts.)
3. Stuff filling into chicken breast. Season chicken to taste. Bake for 45 minutes. Serves 4.

*Available upon request.

text by Lawren Largue, styling by Patricia Wood

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