Jerk Pork Tenderloin with Toasted Coconut Rice

Even though it's springtime, the occasional sun we're getting has me looking forward to summer already. Thank goodness for living in an area where we can actually enjoy all four seasons! But with summer on the brain I've been craving some island fare. This Island Pork Tenderloin with Toasted Coconut Rice certainly hit the spot and the robust seasoning really gave the meal a tropical feel. Coated with salt, pepper, cumin, chili powder and cinnamon, this rub really packed a punch!...

The combination of spices in this recipe will work well with chicken as it did for the pork tenderloin. I would recommend marinating the pork (or chicken) overnight so the flavor really gets into the meat. It makes a world of difference to have all that spice in every bite! I served this with toasted coconut rice (recipe follows) to complete the island inspired meal.

Jerk Pork Tenderloin
recipe adapted from Cooking Light

2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon chili powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 pork tenderloins (2 1/4 to 2 1/2 pounds total)
2 tablespoons olive oil

Preheat oven to 350°F.

  1. To prepare pork, combine first 13 ingredients in a blender; process until smooth. Place green onion mixture in a large zip-top bag. Add pork to bag; seal. Marinate in refrigerator 8 hours or overnight, turning occasionally.
  2. Heat oil in an ovenproof 12-inch heavy skillet over moderately high heat until just beginning to smoke, then brown pork, turning, about 4 minutes total. Transfer pork into preheated oven and roast until thermometer inserted diagonally in center of each tenderloin registers 140°F, about 20 minutes. Let pork stand in skillet at room temperature 10 minutes. (Temperature will rise to about 155°F while standing.)

Toasted Coconut Rice
recipe adapted from Martha Stewart

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup finely shredded unsweetened coconut
1 cup long grain rice
2 cups water
3/4 teaspoon coarse salt
2 scallions, thinly sliced on the bias

Heat oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Cook coconut, stirring, until golden brown, about 6 minutes.

Set aside 2 tablespoons coconut. Stir rice into pan with remaining coconut. Add water and salt, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer, covered, until water is absorbed and rice is tender, about 20 minutes.

Garnish with reserved coconut and the scallions.

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