Pork Fillet in a Creamy lemon and Thyme Sauce

Pork Fillet with Lemon and Thyme

   This week I have been proudly using our very first harvest of home grown lemons. Their dark yellow skins are a joy, the colour of spring and the promise of sunshine. Scratch the skin and the aroma is huge, reminiscent of  eating lemon sherbet on a hot summers day, or walking among trees bearing beautiful ripe fruits in the groves of Sicily. These large lemons are also filled with a good quantity of delicious juice. What a treat, and well done to ‘The Hubby’, and gardener Anna for looking after them so well this year. 

I have also been busy this week and so our family suppers have needed to be quick and easy. Either ten minutes to prepare before cooking slowly, or up front fast and easy. Lean, mild, tender and delicious, pork fillet fits the bill nicely.  They need no more than 15 minutes cooking time in total (for the weights indicated in the recipe), and five minutes resting time, while you finish off ,or dish up your veg, mash and sauce accompaniments.

This creamy lemon fragrant dish has the added benefit of using some of our wonderful lemons whose presence in the green-house has managed to inspired in me a  ‘Good Life’ moment, one that has found me scouring the garden for anything that has been robust enough to sit out the winter months, or that is bravely beginning to emerge. We have some very fat and powerful leeks that I  sliced and stir fried in a bit of butter to accompany the pork fillet, pretty variegated thyme that is used with the pork and  a few remaining store potatoes that lent themselves nicely to boiling and  then ricing into a fluffy steaming mound.  It is one of our  families greatest pleasures to sit down to meal and know that we produced  many of the components ourselves – it really does taste better!  


Pork Fillet in a Creamy Lemon & Thyme Sauce


1 pork fillet will serve 2-3 people; Preparation 10 minutes; Cooking 12-15 minutes; Completion 5-10 minutes


Lemon and thyme sauce

Lemon, variegated thyme, pepper and white wine

1 pork fillets (approx. 400-480g)

½ teaspoon coarse ground black pepper

A good pinch flaked salt

2-3 teaspoons oil for frying

200ml fragrant white wine such as Riesling, or use cider

2 lemons, 3-4 Zest strips from one, grated zest and juice from another

3 -4 sprigs fresh thyme

100ml double cream

An additional sprig of fresh thyme, leaves only, to garnish

Best British Pork Fillet

Dry the fillet well and then rub with the pepper and salt


*NB. If you are cooking double quantities only increase the wine and cream volume by 50ml each.



Heat the oven to 200c/gas6

Trim the fillet of sinew if necessary. Dry well with kitchen paper or the hot oil will spit unmercifully when you pan fry the fillet. Rub the fillet all over with the pepper and salt.

Heat the oil in a shallow lidded casserole and then pan fry the fillet on all sides until golden, 3-4 minutes in total.

Pour the wine carefully into the pan as it will splutter, and stir to deglaze incorporating all of the lovely browning residues. Add the thyme sprigs and lemon zest strips.

Put the lid on the casserole and cook the fillet in the hot oven for 12-15 minutes (larger fillets take a bit longer). I like my pork cooked but pink in the middle – if you are concerned about temperature then cook until the internal temperate of the fillet reaches 56C for pink and 61C for better done. The temperature will rise by 10 degrees on resting.

Remove the  fillets to a warm dish and rest them while you finish the sauce.

Put the casserole with the juices over a high heat on the hob and bubble to reduce by a 1/3rd. Stir in half of the lemon juice and ¾ of the grated zest, cook for a few seconds and then pour in the cream and stirring, bubble to thicken. Adjust the seasoning, adding a spritz of additional lemon juice or salt if required.

Slice the fillets, pour over the sauce and garnish with the reserved zest and fresh thyme leaves. Ready to serve.

perfectly cooked pork internal temperature

Perfectly pink pork fillet served in a creamy lemon and thyme sauce

To Serve:

In the winter casseroled rad cabbage or stir fried leeks or Cavalo Nero make good  accompaniments, along with baked sweet or white potatoes, mash or rosti potatoes. In the spring and summer serve with green beans, a simple salad and a few baby new potatoes.

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