One of the pleasures of the summer is gathering outside in the evening, and eating freshly cooked fresh food.  Regardless of the season, I like my plate to be about 60% vegetables, and summer makes that really easy.  But there is definitely a place for protein on the plate.

Cooking meat on the grill is one of the primal pleasures we’ve enjoyed for years beyond counting.  That pleasure does come at a bit of a cost: heavily charred meat is a known health risk.  But with a little care, you can enjoy the uniquely satisfying flavor of grilled food.

Some simple rules:
– Avoid high fat foods dripping on to extremely hot coals, and limit the amount of sugar in your marinades.  And for goodness sake, don’t use lighter fluid!
– Untreated charcoal and wadded up paper will make a fine fire.
– Lots of people don’t eat pork, and historically, there are some good reasons not to.  Good farming practices and modern refrigeration are critical to healthy meat production.  I do love pork tenderloin, though: it’s lean, it’s inexpensive, it’s pretty easy and fast to prepare, and it’s versatile – it marries well with lots of different flavor combos.

As you’ll see in the photo, I pushed the rules with this particular recipe.  I used a sweeter marinade, and put it on the fire a little early (my bad).  So it’s got a bit more char on it than is ideal.  But I have to tell you – it’s delicious.


 

Grilled Pork Tenderloin with Chutney-Mustard Marinade

 

Ingredients:
– 1/4-1/3 c olive oil
– 2 TB prepared chutney
– 2 TB Dijon mustard
– Juice and zest of 1/2 a lemon
– 2″ of fresh ginger, peeled and grated
– 1-1 1/2 pound pork tenderloin

Directions:
1. Mix together the olive oil, chutney, Dijon mustard, lemon zest/juice, and ginger.
2. Pour over the pork tenderloin in a glass dish or bowl and cover tightly.  Let sit in the refrigerator for 6-8 hours.
3. When your fire is ready, use tongs to lift the tenderloin out of the marinade and let the marinade drain off.  Then cook it on the grill for 15 – 25 minutes depending on the thickness of the tenderloin.
4. Let it rest for 10 minutes before serving.

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