June 10, 2009

Pork In A Comforter

You've heard of pigs in a blanket, right? Well, this is a much larger and tastier version made with veggies, pork tenderloin, and a freshly baked baguette. It sure hits the spot, and looks impressive too.

While browsing through a few catering sites awhile back, I came across this recipe which seemed interesting and different. The original recipe calls for this to be oven-baked, but I decided to try it on the grill. After a lot of "tweaking" (is that possibly related to "twittering?"), I feel this recipe is one to try if you like pork tenderloin and sandwich-type meals. The only thing I would change would be using a softer bread. I purchased a multi-grain baguette, and it was difficult to cut after grilling. It was a bit dry and crumbly, and I think a loaf of Italian bread would work better. Feel free to use whatever vegetable combo you would like. I chose baby spinach, garlic and onions, but as I was grilling, I could visualize this with sweet peppers, or even an olive tapenade.

As for the dry rub, I use a cajun blend made by Dinosaur BBQ, a restaurant based in Central New York. They make a spicy rub called Foreplay, so it's easy to buy here. I always have a bottle on hand, and use it on french fries, chicken and burgers. I've also made my own rub using minced garlic, kosher salt, cracked pepper and herbs (dried oregano, thyme, basil and parsley). I actually plan on going to Dinosaur for a birthday party this weekend, so hopefully I'll be getting some new ideas and grilling inspiration!

If you choose to give this a try, I would love to hear your input, and how this recipe turned out for you.

Grilled Pork Tenderloin (in baguette)
Serves 4-6
1 small loaf of bakery bread (unsliced)
1 tablespoon mayo
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 pork tenderloin (3-4 lbs)
3 tablespoons - dry rub
2 tablespoons dried Italian herbs
olive oil
sea salt/pepper
1 cup baby spinach (uncooked)
2 tablespoons feta cheese
1 large vidalia onion (or red), sliced
8-10 strips of sun dried tomatoes
3 cloves garlic, chopped

Rinse pork tenderloin; pat dry with paper towels. Using dry rub and herbs, rub mixture evenly over tenderloin. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate.
On a large cutting board, make a long slice down the center of the bread, gently remove inside of loaf.
Blend mayo and mustard together, spread along inside bottom and sides. Line bottom of loaf with fresh baby spinach and feta cheese.

In a small pan, heat a few teaspoons of olive oil, and add the onion, sun dried tomatoes and garlic.
Saute until tender, cool and spoon on top of spinach and feta. Set loaf aside.

Preheat grill and lightly grease grates. Grill tenderloin for about 5 minutes on each side. Continue cooking until meat thermometer registers medium rare (about 15-20 minutes).
Remove from grill; lightly drizzle with olive oil. Firmly place tenderloin inside of bread loaf. Using kitchen twine, tightly tie at 2 inch intervals (bring string under bottom of loaf; tie at top, trimming string after knotting). Wrap bottom and sides of bread in foil.

Turn off heat on one side of grill, place loaf on that side (off the heat). Turn up the heat on other burner to high; close cover. Continue cooking loaf for about 15 minutes, checking tenderloin until thermometer registers medium well. Place on a platter, let rest for about 10 minutes.

Remove foil and cut off string. Slice into small servings. Serve with crunchy coleslaw or homemade macaroni salad. Enjoy!


bevkimmel said...

Just happened upon your blog.
this looks delicious and I think I will enjoy you sharing your love of food!!

The Food Addicts said...

that looks really good!! "pork in a comforter" is a cute title for this post, hehe.

"Vanilla and Thyme" said...

Thanks for visiting! Let me know if you try the recipe. I'm always looking for feedback-

Melanie said...

This is an amazing recipe - what a great summer meal. I love sandwiches and this looks absolutely awesome. Way to go on "tweaking" it for the grill - it looks like a success.