Sunday, April 11, 2010


Now that I have a nanny here on weekdays, I have regained something resembling a weekend. And when I have a weekend, I can spend a good chunk of a day cooking meals ahead for the week. This weekend I made: 20 servings of a turkey, spinach, mushroom, onion, carrot, and green bean stew (about half local/organic and half conventional); 12 servings of pancakes fully loaded with last year's local organic strawberries and wild blueberries; and 2 family dinners worth of local, organic pork tenderloin with a Jack Daniel's, maple syrup, and Sriracha marinade.

Now it's that last item that I really want to talk about, see. I recently researched Tennessee whiskey for a work project. When I learned that it is A) filtered through maple sugar charcoal, then B) aged in oak casks that have been charred internally to caramelize the wood sugars, I thought, "Aha! Perfect affinity with maple syrup!" I've been playing around with sauces that balance maple syrup against Sriracha, and even trying to drum up a good liquor to throw in the mix. This did the trick in spades. Possibly the best damn pork I've had in my life--and the recipe couldn't be easier. Here ya go, folks:

Happy Jack Pork

1 -2 pounds of pork tenderloin

1/2 cup Jack Daniel's
1/2 cup Sriracha
1/2 cup maple syrup

1/2 cup Jack Daniel's
1/3 cup Sriracha
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/2 cup heavy cream

Mix the ingredients for the marinade thoroughly, then submerge the tenderloin in the marinade and refrigerate for 5-8 hours. Prehat oven to 375 F/190 C. Place pork with marinade in a baking pan and bake until no pink remains in the center (depending on the size/shape of your tenderloin, likely 45-80 minutes--if you aren't tenderloin-experienced begin checking at 45 minutes.) Remove pork from oven and prepare sauce by thoroughly combining the whiskey, maple syrup, and Sriracha in a saucepan and bringing to a boil. Boil for 4-5 minutes, remove from heat, and whisk in cream. Plate the pork, drizzle with sauce, and serve immediately. Enjoy!

***April 29, 2010: I hear from my aunt Sallea that you can substitute soy milk for the heavy cream in this recipe with good results. Thanks a bunch, Sallea! I love hearing from folks who try my recipes.***

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