Yes sometimes it can be hard to be daring and try a new recipe, especially when you haven’t yet tasted what the outcome will be. I always find it so exciting to try new recipes. It opens up so much opportunity in the world of creating. There are no rights and wrongs (although there are many wise opinions available from experienced chefs) mostly there is just an empty plate waiting to be filled with something delicious and full of flavor. What will you fill your plate with? A drab mill that lacks flavor and leaves nothing to talk about or a meal that gives your taste buds something to really think about and appreciate? I love a good meal that says something. Spices can say a lot and I love the exciting twist of island flavors in this dish.
I used Sriracha hot sauce because it’s one of my favorite hot sauces and I prefer it over Tabasco. I think it has bit more kick and more flavor (but that is my personal opinion, not everyone would agree. So feel free to stick with Tabasco if you’d rather). I also decided to toss in some paprika and up the amount of black pepper, because why not? Enjoy!
Island Pork Tenderloin
Yield: 4 Servings
- 1 (2 1/2 lb) pork tenderloin
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp chili powder
- 1/2 tsp ground cumin
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 1/4 tsp paprika
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1/4 cup + 2 Tbsp packed brown sugar (light or dark)
- 1 Tbsp finely minced garlic
- 1 1/2 tsp Sriracha or Tabasco sauce
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a small bowl, whisk together salt, chili powder, cumin, cinnamon, black pepper and paprika. Press and rub mixture around all sides of pork tenderloin.
Heat olive oil in a 12-inch heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Once oil just begins to smoke, transfer pork to skillet and cook for 2 minutes until bottom has browned, then rotate and cook opposite side until browned, about 2 minutes.
In a small bowl, stir together brown sugar, minced garlic and hot sauce. Spread mixture over the top of browned pork. Transfer pork (in oven safe skillet) to center of oven and roast until center of pork reaches 140 degrees on an instant read thermometer (about 20 minutes, I actually cooked mine about 15 minutes longer because I had a thicker roast and I don't like rare overly juicy pork). Allow pork to rest in skillet, loosely covered with aluminum foil, 10 minutes at room temperature (temperature should rise to 155 degrees while standing). Carve and serve warm.