Bourbon Marinated Pork Tenderloin with Peach Watermelon Salsa is just so peachy, so Southern and makes a lovely summery dish for two.
Amazing and abundant displays of locally grown peaches and watermelons have greeted me lately each day when I walk into the grocery store to shop for my clients.
One of the first things I think of when I see a mountain of fresh peaches is a peach cobbler. Watermelon is something I love all by itself or with feta cheese and drizzled with a good balsamic vinaigrette.
You may have noticed I don’t do many desserts and sweet recipes. The reason is that hubby and I would then EAT said desserts and sweets and we don’t NEED to eat said desserts and sweets. If sweets are in the house, I [especially] would eat them until gone so they could no longer torment me.
So, rather than something sweet, I wanted to use peaches in a savory preparation instead so I came up with this peach and watermelon salsa that pairs beautifully with Bourbon-Marinated Pork Tenderloin.
Tips for making fruit salsa:
- Fruit salsas can be made from almost any combination of fruit.
- You want to include a spicy element like fresh chilies and an acid like vinegar or citrus juice to make all the flavors pop.
- I used white balsamic vinegar here which is a great staple to keep in your pantry. It adds that wonderful balsamic vinegar flavor without changing the color of your dish.
The salsa does not hold well because of the watermelon. If you wish to make the salsa ahead, add the watermelon right before serving.
What is the difference between pork tenderloin and pork loin?
I can not tell you how many times I see pork “tenderloin” and pork “loin” confused. They are two different cuts and if you’re unsure, ask the butcher.
- The tenderloin is a long and narrow muscle located at the end of the loin.
- Pork tenderloins are generally sold in packages of two.
- Each tenderloin weighs approximately one pound.
- They have a tough membrane called a silverskin that needs to be removed prior to cooking as the end result is rather chewy.
- Pork loins have a “fat cap.”
I like to buy pork tenderloin when it’s on sale, divide up the package, trim, place each tenderloin in a gallon-size zipper-top bag and freeze. When you want to prepare one, thaw in the refrigerator. One pork tenderloin takes approximately 24 hours to thaw. When thawed, add your marinade to the bag, place back in the refrigerator and you’re ready to roll!
The marinade for this dish is a delicious pork tenderloin recipe my sister makes that is one of her go-to recipes. She pairs it with a quick and simple cold mustard sauce.
Oh, and save the good bourbon for drinking on the side! An average bourbon will do.
Reserve the marinade to brush over the pork tenderloin while it’s cooking. That’s okay to do as long as you don’t do it right before serving. The meat should still have time to cook when you brush the marinade on for the final time.
Pork is safe to eat when the internal temperature reads 145 degrees but there is going to be some slight carryover cooking. Many people still have the heebie-jeebies about pink pork so if you want it thoroughly cooked, take it to 165 degrees.
A good, high-quality meat thermometer is a wise investment. I’ve never found retail meat thermometers to be accurate so I use a professional-grade Thermapen.
Helpful Tools and Equipment for making Bourbon-Marinated Pork Tenderloin with Peach Watermelon Salsa (Affiliate Links):
- 1/4 cup bourbon whiskey
- 1/4 cup soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar, light or dark
- 1 (1-pound) pork tenderloin, trimmed of fat and silverskin
- 3 tablespoons peach jam or jelly (may also use apple jelly or orange marmalade)
- 3 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar
- 2 peaches, peeled, pitted and chopped
- 1 cup finely diced watermelon
- 1 jalapeno pepper, minced (seeded if desired)
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped red onion
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh mint
- salt, to taste
- MARINADE AND PORK: Combine bourbon, soy sauce and brown sugar in a gallon-sized zipper-top bag. Add the pork tenderloin, seal and squeeze the bag to evenly distribute the marinade around the pork. Refrigerate at least 4 hours and up to 12 hours. Turn the bag occasionally.
- Preheat grill over medium heat. Remove pork from marinade and pat dry, reserving marinade.
- Grill low and slow approximately 30 minutes, basting and turning occasionally. (Baste up to approximately 5 minutes before removing pork from grill.) Pork is safe when it reaches an internal temperature of 145 degrees.
- Allow meat to rest 10 minutes before slicing. Slice diagonally against the grain and serve with salsa.
- SALSA: Whisk jam/jelly and balsamic vinegar together. Add remaining ingredients and stir to combine.
Amount Per Serving Calories 763Total Fat 27gSaturated Fat 4gTrans Fat 0gUnsaturated Fat 22gCholesterol 31mgSodium 4709mgCarbohydrates 100gFiber 7gSugar 74gProtein 21g