Monday, 13 March 2017

Lombinho de porco teryaki salmourado em Sagres e Xerez com espinafres e pimentão


I love pork tenderloin.Tenderloin is easy to cook, juicy, flavourful, and healthfully lean. One tenderloin typically weighs somewhere around a pound, making it a perfect dinner for two (plus a little leftover for sandwiches the next day).One of the best reasons to cook more pork tenderloin is how easily it lends itself to a variety of flavours.My favourite tenderloin recipe has always been a recipe  from the Ribatejo that came to me by way of an Açorean Blogger Elvira,who sadly has not posted for a couple of years now.The recipe in particular uses  a Portuguese store cupboard staple Massa de pimentao.For this new recipe I beer brined the tenderloin in the Portuguese beer, Sagres. I used the teryaki principle but in an unorthodox way.Using the sweet sauce as a marinade and then grilling the meat first and pouring the reduced sauce on afterwards is a non-traditional method of cooking teriyaki
Leaner cuts of pork, like tenderloin, are perfect candidates for this. These cuts are difficult to cook because there’s not enough fat to keep them tender. A beer brine not only ups the moisture but alters the natural qualities of the protein causing some of the muscle to unwind and swell. The brine then gets trapped in these proteins and when cooked, the liquid binds to the muscle creating flavour pockets and a juicier result. This basic brine with beer is an instance where the power of beer can be highlighted during the cooking process.I served the pork on some wilted spinach with a nod to Elvira´s recipe, pan roasted peppers with anchovy.Anchovies add depth to the peppers, but you can omit them if you do not like the taste of anchovy.

Sagres beer brined 
teryaki tenderloin with spinach and pan roasted peppers

1 pork tenderloin approx 500g
2/3 cup soya sauce
1/4 cup mirin or sweet sherry
1/4 cup cider vinegar
1/3 cup sugar
2 tablespoons chopped fresh ginger
1x 25cl bottle sagres mini (left)

In a saucepan combine the soya sauce,mirin or sherry, vinegar,sugar,,ginger and the beer.Simmer the mixture until it is reduced to about 11/3 cups.
Let the mixture cool completely.In a container large enough to hold the pork in one layer,combine the pork and marinade,turning the meat to coat it thoroughly.Let the chops marinade for at least 4 hours or overnight turning it several times.Remove the meat from the marinade and pat dry on paper towel.Pour the marinade into a saucepan and boil it down until you have a sticky sauce.be careful not to burn the sauce,it will reduce down quite quickly. Grill the tenderloin on an oiled rack set about 10cm/ 4ins over glowing coals for about 8 minute on each side,basting it with the marinade for the last 5 minutes of the cooking time.Alternatively the meat can be grilled on a rack under a pre-heated grill in the same manner.
Slice in medallions and serve with the vegetables. 

For the Peppers
Heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a shallow pan.Add 4 garlic cloves crushed, a teaspoon of thyme and anchovies (if using ).Sautée an assortment of different coloured peppers,red,yellow and orange cut into strips.Cook until the peppers start to soften about 12 minutes.

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