Today was another nice day here in Nebraska, which i`m afraid is coming to a close. Winter is on it`s way and i figured i`d better fire up the Big Green Egg smoker before it get`s too cold. I found some tenderloins on sale at my local grocer. After a quick Internet search i decided i`d try my hand at braiding some tenderloins. Looked like a very nice way to present one of my favorite cut`s of meat.
I purchased two nice tenderloins so let`s get to work!
Start by trimming any extra bit`s of fat and silver skin from each loin. I decided to split one loin the long way into two pieces and leave the other whole. On your cutting surface place the loin so as you can slice each piece in three long sections as shown in this picture. Leave an inch uncut to hold the braid together as shown.
Start braiding by placing the left piece over the middle, the right piece in between those two and keep repeating till your at the end of the loin. Secure the ends with a tooth pick so they don't come apart while cooking. Fella`s if you are having trouble figuring this out just ask your wife or girl friend to show you, i`m sure they have braided there own hair. Not that we would need the help but such girl-ish matters are a bit confusing. Hang in there fellas it`s not as hard as it seems besides... it looks real purdy when your done and the ladies will just love the fancy presentation.
OK... now that we suffered through that difficult task the other whole tenderloin will be easy peasy. Split that loin into three section the same as before and criss cross the three sections into another one of those fancy nancy braids that the ladies love. What you will end up with is some thing like the next picture.
Be sure to grab your bottle of Whyldfire Bar-B-Que All Purpose Original Dry Rub or the next best thing which would be... huh ? cant think of any thing.
Anyway season em up good and place in the fridge covered for a few hours to meld the flavors and let em get... (you guessed it) happy. Remember fella`s... Pork gets real happy when using Whyldfire Bar-B-Que Rub so be careful when removing them from the fridge... they is liable to jump right out at ya when opening the fridge door.
While the loins are marinating... fire up your favorite smoker or grill. When the cooker temp stabilizes at 250 degrees place the tenderloins on the grate for a quick cook of approximately 2 - 2 1/2 hours at that temp. For this cook session i added two nice chunks of Apricot wood for smoke flavor. Check on them at the one hour mark and note your cooker temp, make any adjustments to the dampers if needed to maintain the target cooking temp.
Your finished temp for these loins will be 138-140 degrees. When close to being done "glaze" the loins once or twice with your barbecue sauce. Any more than that and in my opinion its a waste. Barbecue sauce is for serving on the side and dipping your meat in. When one glazes its added for color or presentation. Although it does add flavor... what you want is to add too it not over power the flavor of the meat, dry rub & smoke.
The last barbecue cooking competition my wife & I won she came home with a bottle of Whiskey Maple barbecue sauce so i figured this would be the perfect sauce for such a fancy presentations. Brush on a layer or two of the sauce the last 15-20 minutes of cook time.
When you hit the target temp remove the loins from the smoker and let them rest for 20 minutes or so, tented with foil. The internal temp will rise as it rests to approximately 140-145 internal temp, which is just perfect!
Ain't that just a nice way of presenting one of the most tender and flavorful cuts of pork? For the side dishes i would suggest Mac & Cheese with Seasoned Green Beans and a tall glass of iced tea.
That`s it... Thanks for checking out my latest... "BBQ Adventure".