Wild Pig Saltimbocca
Veal saltimbocca is a classic Italian recipe featuring thinly sliced veal cutlets, sage leaves and prosciutto all dusted in flour and fried until crisp. We switch things up a bit and use the tenderloin from medium-sized wild pigs. Finish the dish with a quick pan sauce of white wine, more sage and creamy butter and serve over rice, pasta or potatoes for a quick and delicious family meal.
While the traditional Italian version uses veal, we substitute the tenderloin of wild pigs.
Much of the flavor from this recipe comes from the thinly sliced prosciutto and the fresh sage leaves.
You can find prosciutto in the deli section of most grocery stores.
To make the pork cook quickly without drying out, we slice the tenderloin into cutlets.
Slice the tenderloin into 1/2-inch-thick cutlets.
Use a meat mallet to pound them down to just under ¼ inch in thickness.
Pound the pork down to about 1/8 to 1/4 inch in thickness.
Top each piece of pork with a fresh sage leaf.
Place a sage leaf atop each cutlet before adding a slice of prosciutto.
Next, really press a slice of prosciutto down on each piece of pork and sage before coating in flour so they stick together during the cooking process.
I like to dust the cutlets in Kentucky Kernel seasoned flour, but if you can’t find it at your local market, just use all-purpose flour seasoned with salt, pepper and garlic powder.
Dust the pork on both sides with seasoned flour.
Remember, whenever you cook with wild pork, always wash your hands, cutting boards, knives and anything else that came into contact with the raw meat well before using it for something else.
Heat ¼ inch of olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Once the oil reaches about 350 degrees or starts to smoke slightly, place a few of the pork cutlets in the pan, prosciutto side down. Fry for 3-4 minutes, then flip and fry for an additional 3 minutes. These super thin cutlets cook quickly. Work in batches so that you don’t overcrowd the skillet.
Fry for 3-4 minutes per side until golden and crispy.
Once all of the pork has fried and been transferred to a warm platter, drain the excess oil from the skillet.
Move the pork to a warm platter and make a quick pan sauce.
The pan sauce for this dish is as easy as it gets. Just wine, real butter and a handful of sage leaves.
Cut the cold butter into pats before starting the sauce.
Add the remaining sage leaves and the wine to the pan. Use a wooden spoon to scrape the pan, releasing all the cooked-on goodness from the pork. Once the wine has reduced by at least half, remove the pan from the heat and stir in the butter, one pat at a time. This will thicken the pan sauce. This is a French technique, monter au beurre, which means “to mount with butter.“ It’s a great way to finish off most pan sauces.
After reducing the wine, remove the pan from the heat and stir the butter in a pat at a time to finish and thicken the sauce.
Plate the pork — I like to figure two to three cutlets per person — then drizzle with the pan sauce and cooked sage leaves. I serve this with a starch like rice, potatoes, or pasta, and a vegetable.
1-2 wild pork tenderloins, sliced into cutlets and pounded flat
15-20 fresh sage leaves
6 slices prosciutto (Italian cured ham)
1-2 cups Kentucky Kernel or all-purpose flour seasoned with salt, pepper and garlic powder
½ cup white or marsala wine
4 tablespoons cold butter