Pork tenderloin (2 to 2 1/2 pounds), cleaned and silverskin (membrane) removed
Pecan-Poblano Pesto (recipe below)
Sea salt and black pepper to taste
Apple-Chipotle Glaze (recipe below)
3/4 pound sliced bacon
Make a “Z” cut longitudinally in the pork tenderloin, first making a cut into one side, about one-third of way from top, to a depth of about two-thirds of width. Then roll loin over and make similar cut. When cuts are finished, tenderloin will look like a “Z” when viewed from end. Lay out tenderloin and gently pound flat with tenderizing mallet. Spread Pecan-Poblano Pesto on flattened loin, covering surface, then roll up jelly-roll style. (Loin will look like pinwheel when viewed from end.) Pat surface dry and season well with salt and pepper. Rub on coating of Apple-Chipotle Glaze. Wrap with bacon, covering entire length and both ends, then truss with butcher’s twine.
If cooking on grill: Heat grill to 450 to 500 degrees and brown pork on all sides, about 2 minutes per side, rotating front to back as you turn. Let grill temperature drop to 350 degrees and continue to cook 25 to 30 minutes, or until meat thermometer inserted diagonally 2 inches into meat (avoid stuffing) registers 145 degrees. Baste loin with Apple-Chipotle Glaze on all sides. Continue roasting until meat thermometer reads 160 degrees, an additional 10 to 15 minutes.
If cooking in oven: Heat 1-2 tablespoons of peanut or vegetable oil in heavy 12-inch skillet over high heat until very hot and just smoking, then brown pork on all sides, about 2 minutes per side. Transfer pork to roasting pan and roast in middle of oven about 10 to 15 minutes, until meat thermometer inserted diagonally 2 inches into meat (avoid stuffing) registers 145 degrees. Baste with Apple-Chipotle Glaze on all sides. Continue to roast until thermometer registers 160 degrees, an additional 10 to 15 minutes.
Transfer to cutting board and let stand 20 minutes. Remove twine, slice and serve with remaining Apple-Chipotle Glaze (on the side).
2 fresh poblano peppers
2 tablespoons pecan, walnut or olive oil
1/2 cup pecan halves
1/4 cup finely minced onion
4 cloves roasted garlic
Salt (sea salt)
Roast poblanos on grill, in oven or over stove burner until outer skin is charred. Place in a paper bag and close to steam peppers. Set aside. Heat oil in sauté pan, add pecans and toast for two minutes, stirring frequently. Reduce heat and add the onion (and peeled, raw garlic, if you don’t have roasted garlic) and sauté just until translucent. Set aside. Remove charred outer skin from poblano and discard along with stem and seeds. Coarsely chop poblano. Set aside. Place pecans, onion plus remaining oil and garlic into food processor, and pulse until pecans are coarsely chopped. Add poblanos and pulse to incorporate. Add oil if necessary.
1 can (11 ounces) apple juice concentrate
1 can (4 ounces) chipotle peppers in adobo
Put in food processor or blender and pulse until there are no large chunks.
Servings: 8. Serving size: 4 ounces. Per serving: 430 calories, 35.6 g protein, 27.2 g fat, 3.0 g carbohydrates, 0.9 g dietary fiber, 430 mg sodium, 121 mg cholesterol
—Steven McDowell, Hamilton County Electric Cooperative Association