Wednesday, July 25, 2012

grilled pork tenderloin with pepper jelly glaze




We had two suppers last night.   Well... not really.  Actually, what I intended to have for supper ended up being an after-dinner snack.

A really good after-dinner snack.

When we were home last weekend, Mom gave us a couple of nice-sized pork tenderloin roasts to bring back with us.  I put them in the freezer and had planned to use one last evening for supper.  Before leaving for work, I put it in the fridge to thaw, but it apparently was barely so when we put it on the grill.  It took about 30 minutes longer than I had planned, so we went ahead and had BLT's while waiting.  About an hour later, we enjoyed some smokey, sweet and spicy awesomeness.

I have found the key to really good pork is the brining process, especially with a four or five pound tenderloin on the grill.  If one's not careful, the outside cooks faster than the rest, and supper ends up being a dry chewing fest calling for a gallon of water to wash it down.  Not fun.  Brine is the answer every time, rendering juicy flavor without fail.

A couple of years ago, I brined a pork roast for hours and got a bright idea to baste it while grilling with a bit of pepper jelly I had left in a jar, just because.  Oh my, was it good!  So, that's what I've done periodically, including last night.

Take note:  Watch your grill carefully and keep turning the meat.  You don't want to overly char the outside.  We are charcoal people all the way, but a gas grill will work just fine.  Set a medium-high heat fire in the grill and find pieces of wood to add to the coals/heat source for a bit of tasty smoke (our hickory trees help us out here).

With this grilled pork tenderloin - no matter what time supper is ready - you're gonna enjoy every bite!

Grilled Pork Tenderloin with Pepper Jelly Glaze -
serves 4-6
Ingredients:

  • 1 4-5 pound pork tenderloin
  • 6 cups water
  • 1/2 cup kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp. peppercorns (optional)
  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme (optional)
  • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary (optional)
  • 6 tbsp pepper jelly, divided

~  For the brine, combine water, salt, sugar, and spices in a large pot.  Heat until sugar and 
     salt have dissolved.  Remove from heat and let cool 10 minutes.
~  Once cooled, place tenderloin in water and set pot in fridge at least 8 hours, or 
     overnight.
~  When ready to cook, remove roast from fridge and brine and let sit to take off chill, 
     about 15 minutes.
~  Meanwhile, heat grill to medium-high heat.  
~  Place three tablespoons jelly in microwave-safe dish, and heat in 20 second intervals 
     until thinned.
~  Place roast on greased grates over coals.  Using pastry brush, baste roast with thinned 
     jelly on exposed side.
~  Rotate meat and continue basting intermittently for about 45 minutes.  Wrap in 
     aluminum foil and continue rotating, checking for doneness with meat thermometer in 
     the thickest part of the loin.
~  When temperature reads 140 degrees, remove from heat.  Keep loosely wrapped with 
     foil for 10-15 minutes to allow juices to redistribute.
~  In the meantime, heat remaining jelly as previously directed, and pour over tenderloin 
     slices.

**  If you are not a fan of pepper jelly, other options will work.  Both mango and peach  
      preserves/jellies work beautifully!
   

Recipe from The Lazy Daisy Kitchen