Friday, June 7, 2013

Grilled Pork Tenderloin with Foil Wrapped Vegetables

For dinner tonight I prepared a beautiful grilled pork tenderloin with a generous side of grilled vegetables wrapped in a pocket made of aluminum foil.

I had cooked pork tenderloin on the grill before and that was neither the challenge nor the inspiration for this entry. It was the vegetables that I wanted to cook them differently. I had these mind numbing thoughts of grilled vegetables and I just could not solidify them to a normal state of recipe execution. I had to do a lot of improvisation.

I went to the supermarket and purchased a variety of vegetables for this event: broccoli, asparagus, and onions.


I am getting ahead of myself.

First I had to prepare the pork. I took it out of the package, washed it and then trimmed as much as I could of the fat.

I drizzled some olive oil and...time for the mustard! I rubbed about three tablespoons of mustard on the pork.


Then, I mixed the rub ingredients together
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder,
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder,
  • 1/2 tablespoon cayenne pepper, 
  • 1/2 tablespoon ground cumin 
and sprinkled them on the pork. Of course, the olive oil and the mustard helps and the rub sticks on the pork.  Here is the pork tenderloin next to the rub waiting to be processed.


After the rub was applied all over the pork I set it aside because I had to prepare the vegetables.

Here they are:
  • two bunches of broccoli, 
  • one bunch of scallion,
  • two onions,
  • four cloves of garlic,
  • one bunch of asparagus,
  • and a small potato. 
There is a major reason that I only used one small potato. I forgot to buy potatoes this week from the supermarket. Oops!



I took four garlic cloves and used my handy-dandy garlic press to mince it perfectly. This is a handy tool and I love it. I used a bowl to add the garlic to it.
 

Then I worked on the asparagus. To make sure your asparagus is all nice and tender take (take is a synonym/substitute for the word grab) one piece of asparagus and hold it a little lower than the middle. Then, with the other hand hold the very end of it and snap it. This way you ensure your asparagus will not have any hard, chewy parts.

The image below shows you a few that have been snapped.


Now cut the asparagus with a knife in small portions. Use a well sharpened knife and cut them on a angle. I added the pieces into the bowl with the minced garlic.


Then, the onions. Cut them in four quarters and then each quarter cut it in three additional pieces. I added the onions into the bowl too.


You can add two or three potatoes but since I only had one...that's what I used. That too cut it in quarters and then..you get my point. Add those into the bowl too.


I used two broccoli stalks but I do not have a picture of them. I cut the buds, a.k.a. florets, and also trimmed the leftover trunk. Then I cut the scallion too. Add this too into the bowl.


Here is the bowl with the cut vegetables. Then I drizzled a generous amount of olive oil on the vegetables and then I had to mix them up. I could have used a spoon to do that but I was looking for a better method, one that would really get the oil everywhere.
 

Sweet! I took a second bowl, one that was just a little smaller (a bowl that is a little larger will do as well), I covered one with the other and, CAREFULLY now, I used them as marakas a.k.a rumba shakers. That did the trick and I didn't break anything. Phew!


I took three pieces of aluminum foil and placed them on the counter top and I scooped the vegetables onto the aluminum. 


Then I carefully wrapped the vegetables with the foil. Then I used another piece of foil to wrap each with.  This way I made sure that the vegetables were sealed with the foil.


Here I am trying a new method for starting the fire. It worked well but it needs to be refined. Can you hear Alicia Keys sing This Grill is on fire?


I cooked the pork tenderloin for about two hours on indirect heat. I used my thermometer and waited for the meat to reach 150°F. From the beginning I placed the foil pockets on the other side of the grill, completely opposite the fire. When the pork reached 140°F I moved the foil pockets directly over the flames and cooked them for about 25 minutes and half way I turned the pockets over once.

Here is a picture of the pockets just before I took them off of Achilles.


Here is the first pocket ready to go on the plates. The aroma was just amazing.


I have two pictures for you to see the finished product. the pork and the vegetables. I should have some Parmesan cheese on the vegetables. Rats!


 The asparagus looks and is very tender and full of flavor.


 This is a picture of just the veggies. Yum!


Raspy is da bomb! She loved the pork tenderloin and she had two helpings. Then, she disappeared and no one knew where she went. She was a happy kitty-witty. How many cats do you know that like grilled food. NONE! Just my little Rasputinaki (in the Greek language if you add -aki to a noun it is the sign of a term of endearment). As you can see we also have a live plant for her to nibble of whet grass.





The pork tenderloin was delicious and all three of us loved it. The challenge was the vegetables and they too were delicious. When we have visitors, I will use a small aluminum plate to place the raw vegetables and wrap that once, tightly, with one sheet of aluminum. This way the serving will be much easier.

Happy eating.

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