I bet each and every one of you has a “go-to” pork tenderloin recipe. I can’t say that I do. I have a couple of recipes in my database that are good…just fine. But nothing that I’d be dying to serve to company.
I’ve been blogging for five and a half years and out of 559 recipes I’ve posted, only four have been pork tenderloin. Like chicken breast, I just don’t cook it very often. Well, that is about to change. Every once in a while, and just for fun, I’ll Google a recipe using the term “best ever” along with the food item. Just to see what comes up. Sometimes it takes me on a wild goose chase but have to admit I’ve found a couple of really great recipes doing that. The Best Pasta Salad Ever…is indeed the best pasta salad ever.
Last week I searched for the Best Grilled Pork Tenderloin Recipe Ever and it led me to a Fine Cooking link that I found to be a great resource. I guess I’ve always thought pork tenderloin was tender enough, so I’ve never brined it. Fine Cooking instructed me to found fill a bowl full of water and add sugar and Kosher salt. A quick soak of 45 minutes was indeed worth the pampering. We thought the texture improved.
The next step was making a pasty sweet chili glaze using pineapple juice, cumin and chili powder. The instructions read to turn the grill up to high and cook the tenderloin seven minutes before turning for another six on the other side. My grill gets incinerating h-o-t, so I chickened out and turned the heat down to 650 before tossing the meat on the grate. It worked great. The end result was a crunchy on the outside and oh-so-tender on the inside flavorful treat that I thought was cooked perfectly. What’s even more fun about this recipe “find” is the selection of glazes they offer for that flavorful crust; Rosemary-Orange Glaze, Curry-Apple Glaze…the combinations sound wonderful and I’d like to try them all.
And no matter how you flavor the pork, this method for grilling is great for a non-master griller like me. Also important, buy a pork tenderloin from the meat counter, not one that’s sealed in a package and swimming in some sort of odd smelling solution. Thank you Fine Cooking for that.
I served this with Pioneer Woman’s Macaroni Salad, which again, was billed as being the “best ever.” With black olives, sweet and spicy pickles, roasted red peppers and green onions, I have to admit, this is a great macaroni salad. Adjusting the flavors just a tad to our liking, it indeed was one of the best I’ve had.
- For the Sweet Chile Glaze:
- 2 tsp. vegetable oil
- 2 tsp. ancho chili powder
- ½ tsp. ground cumin
- ¼ cup frozen pineapple juice concentrate, thawed (or ½ cup pineapple juice thickened with ½ tablespoon corn starch)
- For the Pork Tenderloin
- ½ cup kosher salt
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 2 pork tenderloins (about 2 pounds total)
- Mango Chutney Sauce for serving (optional)
- n a medium bowl, mix salt and sugar with 1 quart cool water until dissolved. Trim the tenderloins of excess fat and silverskin and submerge them in the brine; let stand about 45 minutes. Remove the pork from the brine, rinse thoroughly, and pat dry.
- Season and grill
- Rub the brined tenderloins all over with the glaze and then season with the pepper. Or, season to taste with another flavoring of your choice.
- Heat a gas grill, turning all the burners to high until the grill is fully heated, 10 to 15 minutes.
- Put the pork on the hot grill grate. Close the lid and grill for 7 minutes. Turn the pork over, close the lid, and grill for another 6 minutes. Turn off the heat (keep the lid closed) and continue to cook the pork for another 5 minutes. At this point, an instant-read thermometer inserted into the middle of the thickest end of the tenderloin should read 145° to 150°F. (If not, close the lid and let the pork continue to roast in the residual grill heat.) Remove the pork from the grill and let rest for 5 minutes before carving. Cut across the grain into ½-inch slices and serve immediately, with the sauce of your choice.
- Serve with mango chutney sauce. (optional)
Grilled Pork Tenderloin with Sweet Chile Glaze…It’s what’s for Dinner.