April 09, 2015
We needed an extra appetizer one day for a catering event recently. We had chicken, beef, fresh vegetables, lamb, and seafood already on the menu, so we decided that pork would be a good addition.
What kind of pork, I asked my trusted GM and chef Barry Engh – he looked on the shelves and spotted some of his dry rub we use for ribs and chicken. We decided on a sliced dry-rubbed pork tenderloin topped with a pickled Asian radish and carrot slaw. It turned out delicious…so much so, I said this should be put on a dinner menu for an entrée selection.
Start with a simple dry rub.
BARRY’S DRY RUB RECIPE
- 1 ½ cups brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons garlic powder
- 2 tablespoons onion powder
- 2 teaspoons cumin
- 2 teaspoons chili powder
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
Set the oven to 450 degrees. Prepare the pork tenderloin by making sure all the silver skin is removed from the pork. Liberally rub Barry’s Dry Rub all around the tenderloin and press in so it is covered well. Let it sit outside of the refrigerator for an hour. For a more intense flavor, it can sit in the refrigerator overnight.
Place rubbed tenderloins on a baking sheet that has a ½” lip all around to collect the pan juices. Note however, you do not want a high lip around the baking sheet – for that will tend to steam the pork.
Surround the pork with a stick of fine salted butter placed on the baking sheet around the tenderloins. Place in the oven and bake for approximately 10 to 20 minutes depending on how thick your pork is.
My mom would always kill (overcook) pork to keep her beloved family from getting the deadly trichinosis. You don’t hear much about trichinosis these days, so you see restaurant pork tenderloin coming to your table medium – with a bit of pink inside. Frankly, this is the best way to cook it – so try not to overcook your tenderloin – you can always cook an undercooked meat more, but you can never change an overcooked meat.
Let rest for 15 minutes. You want the juices to stay in the meat – and if you slice it too soon, it will make your pork tough and flavorless.
Slice and dredge each piece in the pan juices. This is an essential process for you want each slice to have the wonderful flavor of the rubbed pork and butter juices.
#1: Roasted Tomatoes
Slice in half various colored (red, yellow, green) cherry and/or grape tomatoes. Many groceries have red and yellow, but if you can’t find them at Publix – try Fresh Market or Whole Foods.
Place them on a baking sheet, drizzle with extra virgin olive oil, Kosher salt, and fresh cracked pepper. Bake for exactly 6 minutes at 450 degrees…let rest – can be served at room temperature.
#2: Haricot Vert with Brown Butter
Haricot Vert is a thin cut green bean – often times called French green beans. Cut off hard ends of the green beans. In a pot of rapidly boiling water place the haricot vert in and boil for 2 to 3 minutes.
Drain and place in ice cold water (with ice cubes actually in the water) – this will stop the cooking process and keep the bright green color. Drain.
In a sauté pan over medium heat melt 4 tablespoons of salted butter until it becomes a nutty brown color. Add green beans to pan and toss, add salt and pepper to taste.
#3: Twice Baked Potatoes
Recipe on our recipe blog – type in Twice Baked Potatoes in the search box
#4: Pickled Asian Radish and Carrot Slaw
Julienned Asian radish to equal 3 cups. Julienned carrots to equal one cup (the carrots can already be purchased julienned at most groceries). Place in bowl, add 1 ½ cups natural rice wine vinegar, and 1 cup of white sugar. Stir. Let sit out for one hour, then refrigerate. Drain and serve chilled.