18 August 2011

Who on Earth is Patricia Wells?

Sorry, Patricia! I have never heard of you! What rock have I been under? What channel have I not been watching? What foodie magazine have I missed in the check-out aisle? What newspaper have I been ignoring? I wonder ...

This 50 Women Game-Changers thing has given me so much new information and so many new people to research!  This week, Patricia Wells is the lady in the spotlight. She has a reputation for bringing Provençal cooking techniques and recipes to mainstream foodie culture. She is an internationally known restaurant critic, author of several cookbooks, a NYT journalist. She has branched out to Bistro cooking, other French fare, vegetables and salads as her fame has spread.

Pfft! Could've fooled me ... NOT that discovering her isn't a good thing!  Book after book can be found at Amazon ... she obviously travels in circles of which I've been blissfully unaware!

Sooooo ... I went to the Internet and found an easy, fast, and healthy pork dish that Wells submitted to Food & Wine. It uses various peppers, onions, a pork tenderloin, and hotter than Hell chipotle chiles ... wahooooo! Seems like this must come from her bistro phase ... it's fast, uses summertime vegetables and an easy approach to meat treatment, minimal spices, and a hot pan ... what I associate with a hot and noisy bistro kitchen environment. I prepared a steamed basmati rice, steamed summer vegetable (wax beans and buttered herbs) and plunked it all on a plate ... yum! Good on you, Patrica Wells! Nice to meet you!

I am posting the recipe that Wells posted to Food & Wine, but let it be said that I halved the recipe meant for four and there was the perfect amount for SB's and my dinner, plus a few bites of pork for the mutts that shamelessly beg!

Yes, half the peppers, half a seared pork tenderloin, and half the chipotle measure ... came out perfectly! Make the steamed rice ... it will help your palate handle that really hot chipotle sauce! Just sayin' ...

Patricia Wells' Pork Tenderloin with Bell Peppers and Chipotles

Serves 4


1 ½ tbsp. olive oil

1 ¾ lb. pork tenderloin, trimmed
Salt and freshing ground black pepper
1 large sweet onion, halved lengthwise and then thinly sliced
1 c. water
2 chipotle chiles in adobo, sliced and including ½ tsp adobo sauce (I used more sauce...)
1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
1 yellow bell pepper, ditto
1 green bell pepper, ditto

Making the Dish:

1. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet. Season the pork tenderloin with salt and pepper and brown in the skillet for 4 minutes per side over medium-high heat.

2. Remove the tenderloin to a warm platter and add the onion to the pan. Sesaon the onions with salt and pepper and cover … cook for about ten minutes until wilted.

3. Return the tenderloin to the pan with the onions, add the water and chipotles and adobo sauce, stir to combine, cover and simmer for about 5 minutes.

4. Turn the tenderloin over, cover with the bell peppers. Cover and continue simmering for another 5 minutes.

5. Remove the tenderloin to a carving platter and cover loosely with foil.

6. Leave the cover off the pan and boil the sauces and vegetables until the sauce thickens a bit – about another 5 minutes.

7. Plate the peppers and onions, carve the tenderloin into thick slices and place them atop the vegetables. Pour the sauce over all and serve with a steamed rice and salad or vegetable.

To view other tributes and recipes by Patricia Wells, join Mary at One Perfect Bite to link to all the other blogging friends that are along for the 50 Women Game-Changers blogging project! It's a varied and interesting crowd of cooks! Join us, why don't you?


  1. Looks good. I have the veg. harvest cookbook, but I just can't get into it. I'm not sure why, everything sounds so good. I made the salmon curry and my husband loved it!

  2. Travelling along with Mary and the group with this adventure we are learning so much. I had never heard of her either but had a very difficult time choosing a recipe for this weeks challenge. Excellent job Susan!

  3. I have never heard of her either, but now I will go find out what she is all about. Love finding a good recipe for pork tenderloin and this one is really our kind of meal; thanks Susan. I LOVE those zinnias on your side bar, ours did not do well at all this year.

  4. @ Rita - If I could send you a bouquet of zinnias, I would! Ours did well this summer, we had rain and kept Japanese beetle traps across the yard from them, so they thrived!

  5. I've never heard of her either. This recipe looks AMAZING.

  6. Wow, that's pretty amazing- to be a game changer without anyone seeing you do it! That pork tenderloin looks DEEEElicious! Reminds me that it's been eons since I've cooked one. x

  7. This meal looks delicious --- pretty too. I love pork tenderloin but I never do anything creative with it, so I'm glad to learn about this. Great choice!

  8. Nope, never heard of her (which really doesn't mean anything, lol). I LOVE chipotles!!! And yes, they're hot but isn't that smoky flavour wonderful. Looks delicious Susan. I'm with Sue, I love pork tenderloin too but never do anything creative with it (except make Cuban sandwiches).

  9. I love her mantra on cooking. I've watched a couple of her interviews online this week to get inspired by the challenge, really a neat person with a great attitude about cooking.

    Love the recipe you picked, looks amazing!

  10. I'd say that is a beautiful introduction to Wells...I'd fill my plate! So, is your bistro open for business...cuz I'm hungry ;)

  11. You picked a great dish to begin working with. I promise they'll keep getting better and better. I'm so glad you joined our group. You've been a wonderful addition. I hope you have a great day. Blessings...Mary

  12. Isn't it great to discover new cookbook writers? Your dish looks beautiful!

  13. What a nice simple meal to prepare in honor of Patricia Wells. I haven't cooked much from her cookbooks but so many of her recipes look straightforward and very appoachabe.

  14. I asked the same question when I first read her name on the list. Your peppers cooked up beautifully!

  15. I was right there with you...I had heard her name and saw articles with her name on them...but basically I did't know anything about her! Nice find! I will have to bookmark this recipe..it looks delicious!


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