Happy New Year!
The last two years sure have been challenging, but a new year brings feelings of hope and renewal. For this month’s posting, we thought we’d share a real “show-stopper”: Western Pacific’s Stuffed Pork Tenderloin with Cream Gravy and Raisin Dressing.

Figure 1 Western Pacific map, 1925.

The original Western Pacific Railroad was the westernmost portion of the first transcontinental railroad, built in 1862. It stretched between Sacramento and San Jose, California. Once it completed construction of its last leg between Sacramento and Oakland, it was then absorbed by the Central Pacific in 1870.

Figure 2 Western Pacific dining car menu, 1938.

Figure 3 Western Pacific dining car menu, interior, 1938.

A completely different Western Pacific Railway Company was established in 1903 under the direction of George Jay Gould, I, who was the son of the famous early railroad financier, Jay Gould. The Western Pacific, running between Oakland, California and Salt Lake City would become a part of a planned transcontinental railroad that was never fully realized. The Denver & Rio Grande was swept up into this scheme and under WP control for many years.

Figure 4 A 1939 Western Pacific dining car advertisement.

Given this relationship, several 20th century Rio Grande passenger trains were jointly operated with Western Pacific. These included the Scenic Limited and the Exposition Flyer. In the late 1940s, the Western Pacific would become a partner in operating the famous California Zephyr streamliner, along with the Denver & Rio Grande Western and the Chicago, Burlington & Quincy. The California Zephyr traveled between Oakland and Chicago via Salt Lake City and Denver.

Figure 5 A 1968 California Zephyr menu, Colorado Railroad Museum collection.

Figure 6 California Zephyr menu interior.

One of the most iconic 20th century trains, the California Zephyr was known for its scenic route, but also for its world-class dining. One such recipe featured aboard the Western Pacific is the following Pork Tenderloin.

The dish of rolled meat around a filling is known as a roulade, which comes from the French word rouler, which means “to roll”. There are similar dishes among different cultures, such as rouladen in German cuisine, or involtini in Italian cuisine.

Figure 7 Western Pacific “Inca” china pattern made for the Feather River Route.

Whatever you call it, we hope you enjoy the following dish. Please let us know how it turns out in the comments, or via our Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter pages.

Western Pacific’s Stuffed Pork Tenderloin with Cream Gravy and Raisin Dressing
Tenderloin Ingredients:
3 large or 6 small pork tenderloins
1 tablespoon flour
2 oz. butter
1 cup cream

Raisin Dressing Ingredients:
1 cup fresh bread crumbs
¼ cup seedless raisins
1 oz. butter
1 egg
Pinch of salt
Pinch of cinnamon
Milk to moisten

Instructions: Make raisin dressing by mixing all ingredients well. Split pork tenderloin lengthwise and fill with dressing, tie and dredge with flour, arrange in roasting pan, brush with melted butter and roast about 20 minutes in hot oven. Remove the tenderloins, sprinkle a little flour in the pan, add cream, and let simmer for a few minutes and strain. When serving, remove string, place open side down on platter and cover with pan gravy. Makes 6 servings.

Past Dining on the Rails Posts:
Dining on the Rails: December 2021 – Cranberry Sauce
Dining on the Rails: November 2021 – Oyster Stuffing!
Dining on the Rails: October 2021 – Chicken Pot Pie
Dining on the Rails: September 2021 – Chili
Dining on the Rails: August 2021 – Pullman “Tom Collins” Cocktail
Dining on the Rails: June – How about a salad?
Dining on the Rails – Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Ham!
Dining on the Rails: CRI&P’s New England Boiled Dinner
Dining on the Rails: A Sweet Treat for your Valentine!
Dining on the Rails: Black Eyed Peas!
Dining on the Rails: Eggnog
Dining on the Rails: Happy Thanksgiving!
Dining on the Rails: Union Pacific Apple Pie
Dining on the Rails, August 2020
Dining on the Rails, July 2020
Dining on the Rails, June 14, 2020
Dining on the Rails, June 7, 2020
Dining on the Rails, May 31, 2020
Dining on the Rails, May 24, 2020
Dining on the Rails, May 17, 2020
Dining on the Rails, May 10, 2020
Dining on the Rails, May 3, 2020
Dining on the Rails, April 26, 2020
Dining on the Rails, April 19, 2020
Dining on the Rails, April 12, 2020


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