An Easy Dish to Celebrate Your Vacation
Want to start off your vacation with a dish that’s easy, delicious, and takes you on a trip to the Islands? Even in the forests of the Pacific Northwest?
Well, put on some Reggae, put on your most colorful shirt, pour yourself the delightful beverage of your choice, and get ready for a party.
This sweet-and-spicy dish is simple to prep ahead as well, so get even that out of the way before your trip, and then just enjoy!
First: The Tenderloin
Pork tenderloin is either the easiest thing in the world to cook, or the easiest to dry out to ruin. Some care must be taken. But one you understand the best way to cook it, it’s a joy to offer to your guests and family.
The first secret? Cook it hot and fast! The less time a pork tenderloin spends on the heat, the less it will dry out.
The second secret? Let. It. Rest.
After you cook any meat, the interior pressure rises. If you cut into it then, it will literally pump out all the juicy goodness. Let that pressure fall, and let the juices redistribute. Tent it with foil, leave it alone for about ten minutes, and then serve it up with pride.
Second: The Tenderloin (Part 2)
Getting your tenderloin ready for cooking is the only real effort you’ll need to put in for
this dish. But the best thing is that you can cheat!
Removing *all* the silverskin from the tenderloin will make your dish so delectable. But it
can be daunting and picky the first time you try. You need a thin, very-sharp knife…or you can skip it entirely and ask your local supermarket butcher to do the job for you. They have the right knives and all the experience to get the job done quickly and easily. Avail yourself of their help! Make a new friend! A good butcher is a great resource. Your cooking level will immediately jump up.
If you want to try it yourself, slip your knife blade under the silverskin, making a small ‘tab’ to hold on to. Then, holding the tab taut with one hand, run your knife under the membrane, keeping it angled slightly away from the meat. Try to take off only the silverskin, leaving all of the meat behind. Go at your own pace; this isn’t a race. And remember that the sharper your knife, the easier and safer this task will be.
To make your vacation that much easier, make sure your tenderloin is trimmed and ready to go before you even leave home. Make sure it’s tightly wrapped and well chilled. Then there’s only the Marinade to mix up, and that can be done at home too!
Third: The Marinade
This sweet marinade gets its main flavor from Allspice, Ginger, Balsamic Vinegar and Rum. Don’t want to use rum? Substitute Rum extract. Want a more gingery taste? Substitute a spicy Ginger Beer for the rum.
This recipe also calls for some heat in the form of a small dose of Cayenne. But if you want more, feel free to add more Cayenne. Or, for a more authentic vibe, try a Scotch Bonnet pepper. But be careful; the Bonney can pack a lot of heat. I like to just cut a small cross in the base of the pepper and toss it whole into the marinade.
Of course, I know there are some of you out there who long to breathe fire. You can cut up your pepper and remove the white fleshy ribs and seeds from the inside.
Or don’t, if that’s how you like it!
This marinade is flavorful enough to balance even that level of heat.
1 1-2 lb. Pork Tenderloin, trimmed of all silverskin
½ tsp Salt
½ tsp Allspice (or more to taste)
¼ tsp Black Pepper (or more to taste)
¼ tsp Cayenne (or a Scotch Bonnet Pepper (See Above))
¼ tsp Garlic Powder
1 tsp grated Ginger
1 tsp Orange Zest
2 tbsp Soy Sauce
½ cup Rum
¼ cup Brown Sugar
½ cup Balsamic Vinegar
1 tsp Better than Boullion, Poultry Flavor
Step 1: Be sure you’ve trimmed all silverskin from the pork tenderloin. Place it in a one gallon ziploc bag.
Step 2: Mix the salt, allspice, black pepper, cayenne, garlic powder, ginger, orange zest, soy sauce, rum, sugar and vinegar. Pour into the ziploc bag and briefly massage into the meat.
Step 3: Marinate for at least one hour, no more than three.
Step 4: Set your oven to 425° F
Step 5: Heat your baking dish on the stovetop with a little oil. Make sure it as hot before you begin. Then squeegee off as much of the marinade from the pork tenderloin as possible. Sear the tenderloin quickly on at least 2 sides.
Step 6: Pour all of the remaining marinade into a small saucepan to reduce. Add the Better than Boullion paste (an all-purpose staple in my RV Fridge). Boil vigorously, stirring as needed, until reduced to a thick glaze. Set aside.
Step 7: Place the seared tenderloins into the preheated oven and roast for about 10
minutes, or until the interior temperature registers 135° F.
Step 8: Baste with the marinade glaze. Change oven to BROIL and broil until the
glaze is browned and crackly. Remove from oven and REST. Slice when ready to serve.
Step 9: Pour the remaining glaze into pools on plate and serve the tenderloin slices on top.
If you want to grill your Tenderloin instead, go for it!
After removing as much marinade as possible, place your Tenderloin on the hottest part of your grill, turning it only once, for about 10 to 15 minutes, or until the interior temperature registers 135° F. Move the pork to the cooler part of your grill and baste with the marinade for two minutes more to seal the glaze.
Rest, slice and serve. Turn up the music and let the party get started!
This dish goes with anything from a simple green salad, to mashed potatoes, or even fried plantain chips.
If you’re *really* feeling the island spirit, and you’re up for a challenge, try your hand at:
But that’s a recipe for another day.
From the Poulsbo RV Family to yours, enjoy!
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