Creating recipes isn't a pastime—it's a passion. And a lot of fun.

The rules are few: Use 99% fresh ingredients (or thereabouts); make the dish simple but flavorful; make the dish flavorful but simple; be creative, not silly.

With this blog, I want to share new recipes, along with tips on ingredients and preparation, and, hopefully, show new cooks (and non-cooks) the pleasure in setting the table with a delicious homemade meal. The Briny Lemon is about fresh, simple, flavorful ingredients and easy cooking methods that help you bring the best to your family table. Your comments are welcome!

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Grilled Pork Tenderloin with Fig-and-Raspberry Glaze

When I think about cooking pork tenderloin, it usually involves a hot oven. But this wonderfully tender, lean cut of pork works great on the grill too. While some recipes call for grilling the meat directly over the flame, I’ve found that first cooking the tenderloin off-heat, next to a hot fire, mimics the environment of the oven. Once the meat is almost done, move it over direct heat to give the outside a little of that delicious char—and then you’re ready for the glaze.

Sauces are good for oven-roasted pork, but a glaze is great for the grill. Fruity, sticky, pleasantly sweet and very silky—that’s what a couple of tasty jams cook down to, along with a little butter and mild white balsamic vinegar.

Note: The stickiness of the jam also means that it tends to stiffen when cooked down and then cooled. Simply rewarm the glaze over very low heat just before using, if you need to loosen it.

Also note: I had an exceptionally large pork tenderloin—about one-and-a-half pounds. Of course, that means a longer grilling time. If your tenderloin is closer to the normal one-pound, adjust the time down accordingly—18-20 minutes total.

Serves 4

  • 1 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup red raspberry jam
  • 2 tbsp fig jam
  • 1 tbsp white balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp finely chopped fresh tarragon
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp crushed dried oregano
  • 1 1-1/2-lb pork tenderloin, trimmed
  • olive oil, for rubbing
Glaze Ingredients
  1. Light a grill for medium-high heat with space for off-heat grilling.
  2. Heat a small, nonstick saucepan or skillet over medium-low heat and add the butter. When the butter has melted, add both jams and the vinegar and bring to a simmer. Cook until thickened, 6-7 minutes. 
  3. Remove from the heat and stir in the tarragon. Season with salt and pepper and let stand while the pork grills. (Reheat gently before using if the glaze becomes too stiff.)
Glaze Beginning to Simmer 
Thickened Glaze
Fig-and-Raspberry Glaze
  1. Combine the oregano with salt and pepper in a small bowl. Rub the mixture all over the pork tenderloin.
  2. Lightly oil the off-heat side of the grill grate. Place the tenderloin on it and cover the grill. Grill 6 minutes, then turn at a 90° angle and grill 6 minutes. Turn another 90° and grill 6 minutes. Turn a final 90° and grill 6 minutes longer.
  3. Place the tenderloin over direct heat until char marks appear, 1-2 minutes. Turn over and brush with the glaze. Grill, uncovered, 1 minute. Transfer the pork to a cutting board and let rest 5 minutes.
Seasoned Pork Tenderloin
Beginning to Grill
1st Turn
2nd Turn 
3rd Turn 
1st Side Over Direct Heat 
2nd Side Over Direct Heat 
Glazed Tenderloin
Cut into 12 slices, transfer to a platter, and serve.

Grilled Pork Tenderloin with Fig-and-Raspberry Glaze

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