Lean, delicious and – as its name suggests – tender, this oft neglected cut of pork is great for quick stir fries and last minute meals. James and Sam explore how to get the most bang for your buck from a pork tenderloin.
Sweet & Sour Pork
Inspired by Ching’s Chinese Food In Minutes by Ching-He Huang
- 1 beaten egg
- 1 tbsp cornflour
- 1 pork tenderloin cut in to 5mm slices
- Oil for deep frying
- 1 tbsp grated ginger
- 1 red pepper, deseeded and cut in to chunks
- 1 green pepper, deseeded and cut in to chunks
- 1 small tin pineapple chunks (approx 250g)
- 1 tbsp light soy sauce
- 1 tbsp rice vinegar
- 1/2 tsp brown sugar (we used maple syrup)
- 1 tsp cornflour (mixed with 1 tbsp water)
- Salt and white pepper
- Mix the egg and cornflour in to a batter. Place the pork slices in the mixture and season with salt and white pepper.
- Fill a wok to 1/3 full of oil (or alternatively use a deep frier) and heat over a high heat. You can tell when the oil is up to temperature by dropping in a small bread cube – if it turns golden brown in 15 seconds and rises to the surface then you are ready to go.
- Carefully place the pork slices in the oil. Try not to overcrowd the pan. You may need to do this in batches. Fry for 3-4 minutes until golden brown, then remove and drain on kitchen paper.
- Once all the pork is cooked, drain the oil from the wok. You can strain it and reuse at a later date.
- Return the wok to the heat and add 1 tbsp of the reserved oil.
- Add the ginger and pepper chunks, stirring quickly. After 2 minutes, add the pineapple and its juice. Let it bubble. Add the soy sauce, vinger and sugar/maple syrup. Allow to reduce slightly before adding the cornflour-water mix, then stirring to thicken.
- Return the pork to the wok, stir and and toss to coat with the sauce then serve.
- 3 tbsp your favourite BBQ dry rub (I like Memphis Dust from AmazingRibs.com)
- 1 pork tenderloin
- 1 litre cold water
- 70g salt
- 200ml maple syrup (seperated in to two equal halves)
- 3 cloves garlic, crushed
- 3 tbsp ginger, chopped
- 2 tbsp dried rosemary
- 1 tbsp black pepper
- Wood chips (for smoking – I used cherry wood)
- 3 tbsp cider vinegar
- Any leftover hot sauce you have lying around (optional)
- To brine the pork, mix the water, 100ml maple syrup, salt, garlic, ginger, rosemary and black better in a large plastic container. Add the pork loin and refrigerate overnight.
- The next day, remove the pork from the brine and gently wash off any residual salt. Cover in tbsp of the dry rub and return to the fridge for a least two hours to marinate.
- Fire up your smoker or set your BBQ for indirect cooking. You are looking for steady low temperature of around 110c (around 225f). Add your pork tenderloin to the grill.
- While your tenderloin is cooking, make your BBQ maple glaze. Add the remaining maple syrup, BBQ rub, vinegar and leftover hot sauce to a pan. Reduce over a medium heat until thick and sticky.
- After about 2 hours on the grill, baste your tenderloin with the BBQ maple glaze. Repeat until the internal temperature reaches 65c (145f) – around 2 and a half to three hours.
- Remove from the grill and allow to rest for 15 minutes. Slice and serve with the remaining glaze.