Once a week, I try to sit down to plan our meals for that upcoming week. I usually try to plan a pretty good variety of meals and cooking methods. Spring in New England tends to be a bit tricky though, as some days it is 70 degrees and sunny and other days it is in the 40′s and raining. What is great about this recipe is that it includes two methods for cooking the pork, roasting or grilling outside. Perfect for the unpredictable Spring weather!
Pork tenderloins are marinated in a simple mixture of fresh herbs, lemon juice and Dijon mustard. Although we grilled them this time around, roasting is also delicious. This recipe makes three tenderloins, but can easily be halved for just one.
Herb-Marinated Pork Tenderloin
- 1 lemon, zest grated
- 3/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (4 to 6 lemons)
- Good olive oil
- 2 tablespoons minced garlic (6 cloves)
- 1 1/2 tablespoons minced fresh rosemary leaves
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme leaves
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 3 pork tenderloins (about 1 pound each)
- Kosher salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
Combine the lemon zest, lemon juice, 1/2 cup olive oil, garlic, rosemary, thyme, mustard, and 2 teaspoons salt in a sturdy 1-gallon resealable plastic bag. Add the pork tenderloins and turn to coat with the marinade. Squeeze out the air and seal the bag. Marinate the pork in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours but preferably overnight.
When ready to cook, remove the tenderloins from the marinade and discard the marinade but leave the herbs that cling to the meat. Sprinkle the tenderloins generously with salt and pepper.
To roast the tenderloins: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Heat 3 tablespoons olive oil in a large oven-proof saute pan or Dutch oven, over medium-high heat. Sear the pork tenderloins on all sides until golden brown. Place the saute pan in the oven and roast the tenderloins for 10 to 15 minutes or until the meat registers 137 degrees F at the thickest part.
To grill the tenderloins: Build a charcoal fire, or heat a gas grill. Brush the cooking grate with oil to prevent the pork from sticking. Grill the tenderloins, turning a few times to brown on all sides, for 15 to 25 minutes (depending on the heat of the coals) until the meat thermometer reaches 137 degrees at the thickest part.
Transfer the tenderloins to a platter and cover tightly with aluminum foil. Allow to rest for 10 minutes. Carve in 1/2-inch-thick diagonal slices. The thickest part of the tenderloin will be quite pink (it’s just fine!) and the thinnest part will be well done. Season with salt and pepper and serve warm, or at room temperature with the juices that collect in the platter.
Note: Ina recommends cooking the pork to 137 degrees, but I prefer to cook until 140 degrees.