Four Seasons chef Douglas Anderson keeps his grilled pork tenderloin as moist as possible by brining it for 4 to 6 hours, then glazing it with a smoky, coffee-flavored barbecue sauce just before it comes off the grill. The sauce can be refrigerated for up to 1 week. This recipe will make enough brine for up to 3 pounds of pork tenderloin.
Although the recommended safe internal temperature for cooked pork is 160 degrees, the chef admits that at home, he cooks it to--5 degrees.
At the Four Seasons' Back Yard grill, he serves it sliced with shrimp and grits.
Servings: 3 - 4
- For the brine and pork tenderloin
- 8 cups water
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup salt
- 2 to 3 thyme sprigs
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 clove garlic, crushed
- 6 whole black peppercorns
- 12 to 14 ounces pork tenderloin, trimmed of silver skin and excess fat
- For the barbecue sauce
- 1/2 medium onion
- 1/2 red bell pepper, stemmed and seeded
- 1 tablespoon steeped coffee grounds
- 1/2 cup hot water
- 2 cups ketchup
- 1 teaspoon hot chili sauce, such as sambal oelek
- 1/2 teaspoon smoke flavoring, such as Liquid Smoke
- 1/4 cup dark brown sugar
- 1/4 cup cider vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- Kosher salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
For the brine and pork tenderloin: Combine the ingredients in a large container with a tight-fitting lid. Submerge the pork tenderloin and refrigerate for 4 to 6 hours.
For the barbecue sauce: On the stovetop or grill, char the onion and bell pepper halves. Place them in a blender and add the steeped coffee grounds and 1/2 cup of hot water; puree until smooth. Transfer to a container with a tight-fitting lid and let cool, uncovered, to room temperature. When cooled, add the the ketchup, chili sauce, smoke flavoring, brown sugar, vinegar, garlic powder and salt and pepper to taste. Cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
When ready to grill: Heat a gas grill to medium-high. If using a charcoal grill, start the charcoal or wood briquettes; when the briquettes are ready, distribute them evenly under the cooking area for direct heat. Oil the grate.
Discard the brine. Grill the pork tenderloin for 15 minutes, turning often to develop color on all sides of the meat. While it cooks, brush the meat all over with the coffee-flavored barbecue sauce. (The meat should register an internal temperature of 160 degrees on an instant-read thermometer.) Transfer to a cutting board and let rest for 5 to 10 minutes before cutting into 1/2-inch thick slices. Serve with the remaining barbecue sauce passed at the table.
From Four Seasons chef Douglas Anderson.
Tested by Michael Trimarchi.
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