Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Mostly Midwestern Thing

When we lived in Indiana, I always noticed two things on the menus whenever we went out to eat.  One was grits, the waiters and waitresses would always ask: "Would you like fries or grits with that?"  I'm not a big grits fan, even though my grandfather loved them for breakfast, but the other item on almost every menu, I did grow to like quite a bit.  That item was pork tenderloin sandwiches.  This is something Steve grew up with and almost always ordered each time we were out.  I never knew much about pork tenderloin sandwiches, but in Indiana's defense, whenever I'd ask for gravy on my french fries, I got funny looks, must be that one is mostly an Eastern thing.  So I guess we are even.  Here is our recipe for pork tenderloin sandwiches.

Start with however many pork tenderloins you want to make.  Take each one, place it between plastic wrap and pound them until they are about 1/4 inch thick, the thinner the better.  

Place them in a bowl and cover them with buttermilk.  If you cannot get buttermilk you can use one tablespoon of vinegar to one cup of regular milk, that works fine as a substitute.  Let the meat soak overnight, if you can, or all day while you are at work.

For the coating you will need:

1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

1 teaspoon onion powder

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1 cup flour, depending on how many you need to coat

2 beaten eggs

1 cup bread crumbs, either seasoned or plain, your preference, (hint: Panko bread crumbs will make a crunchier end product).

Add all the spices to your flour mixture.  Take the meat, one at a time, from the buttermilk and dip each one in the seasoned flour mixture first, then the beaten eggs, and finally coat with bread crumbs. 

Fry each tenderloin in your deep fryer, electric frying pan or stove top pan until each side is nice and brown.  

Place each tenderloin on toasted french bread, toasted garlic bread or on a hamburger bun.  We like ours topped with ketchup, mustard and dill pickles.  You can also add lettuce and tomato if you like.  We serve them with steak fries on the side and you can use whatever sides you like. 

We usually saw these tenderloins on the breakfast menu with white gravy on the meat and a couple of eggs and toast on the side.  They are wonderful that way too.

It has been our dream for the past ten years to own a nice little diner, serving down home cooking.  In the Midwest I came to appreciate those small diners dotted along the highways and in small towns whenever we traveled.

I hope you enjoy this recipe.