Tag Archives: pork

spicy grilled pork tenderloin

We love to make pork tenderloin, especially during grilling season when we can just throw it on the gas grill outside on our back patio. And here in Florida, the weather is suited for outdoor grilling most of the year. Well, this winter has been cold, but I really can’t complain all that much.

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My brother-in-law turned us on to a really easy marinade for pork tenderloins using Dale’s Seasoning. It’s so simple just to marinade the pork for an hour or so before grilling, and the meat has wonderful flavor. In fact, it’s usually our go-to marinade for this cut of meat.

The April 2010 issue of Food and Wine magazine arrived in our mailbox this past week, and on page 48 is a recipe for Spicy Lemon-Rosemary Pork Tenderloin. Since we like lemon, rosemary, and most anything spicy, I thought we’d give it a try. I’ve listed the recipe below, but it’s really very simple — olive oil, fresh lemon juice, rosemary leaves, crushed red pepper, and garlic cloves. And pork tenderloins. That’s it.

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The recipe called for searing in a skillet, but since I’d been on my feet most of the day, I convinced my husband to fire up the gas grill and take over for me.

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The verdict? The meat was very tender, with great flavor from the marinade. And it was spicy. Probably a bit too spicy for the kids, and maybe a tad too spicy for me, but my husband really enjoyed it. When he gets seconds, I know we’ve hit on a good recipe. He went for seconds of this.

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I had been thinking of a white wine to cut through the spiciness of the marinade, perhaps a dry Reisling. Food and Wine recommended a Syrah, so I decided to go with their suggestion. The 2008 Mollydooker Two Left Feet is a mostly Shiraz (Syrah) blend. Great wine, very big and bold, and high alcohol (16%). I think a Reisling would have been a better choice for these spices, though.

mollydooker two left feet

Spicy Lemon-Rosemary Pork Tenderloin

(Only slightly adapted from Food and Wine. I grilled the pork instead of roasting it. Serves 4 easily.)
Ingredients
  • 6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup rosemary leaves
  • 2 tablespoons crushed red pepper (or less, depending on your tastes)
  • 6 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • Two 1-pound pork tenderloins
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
Preparation

1. In a large resealable plastic bag, combine the olive oil, lemon juice, rosemary, red pepper, garlic, and pork. Press out any air remaining in the bag, seal, and refrigerate for 6 to 8 hours. Note: We let it sit for about 3 hours, which I thought was plenty.

2. Let the pork stand at room temperature for 1 hour. Heat a gas grill until fully heated, about 10 to 15 minutes. Remove the pork from the marinade and scrape off most of the garlic and rosemary. Season the pork with salt and pepper. Put pork tenderloins on hot grill grate. Grill, turning occasionally, until thermometer inserted into the thickest part registers 145 degrees, about 20-25 minutes. Remove from grill, cover loosely with aluminum foil, and let rest for 10 minutes before slicing and serving.

And if anyone is wondering, that side dish in the photos is rutabaga. A post on that is coming soon.

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a grits revelation

Being from the south, I know grits. And I like grits. [Side note: I feel like I should throw in a Ya’ll or two here, but I’ll resist.]

Anyhoo…I’ve never actually made grits. I confess that in the distant past, I have microwaved a package of instant grits for my kids, but only once or twice. A long time ago. Before I turned over this new culinary leaf.
creamy grits with pulled pork
Grits have become very popular it seems. I’ve seen lots of recipes for creamy grits, and I’ve seen them show up more frequently on restaurant menus. The best brand according to all the hype is Anson Mills. For my first try at making grits, I really wanted to make the Anson Mills variety, but none of the local markets here carry them. I was able to find a brand in the local Fresh Market called Charleston’s Own, so I decided to go with those. What the heck.

Given that it was a work-day, I put a pork shoulder in the slow cooker (following this recipe from Better Homes & Gardens) first thing in the morning, and I worked on the grits when I came home. For the creamy grits, I semi-followed this recipe from Gourmet magazine. [Another side note:  I really, really, really miss that magazine.]
pulled pork with creamy stone ground grits
And these grits were the best grits I’ve ever eaten. The pulled pork was juicy and had some heat to it at the finish, and the creaminess of the grits was the perfect counterbalance to that heat. My husband — who told me just as I was serving it up, “You know, I don’t really like grits,” — really enjoyed the entire dish, grits included.

Never, ever again will I tear open and microwave a package of instant grits. I’m a stone-ground grits convert.

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Filed under dinner, slow cooker