Whiskey Marinated Pork Tenderloin

I whipped this recipe up for dinner tonight — Lorraine liked it enough that she asked me to record it.

Recently I read some recipes for pork tenderloin that involved marinating it in various whiskey’s. Lorraine selected pork tenderloin for dinner, so I decided to go for it. I didn’t have a recipe handy … no biggie … I wouldn’t follow it anyway. So I dug into the cupboard and invented this one.

This is actually a pork scallopine recipe where I marinated the pork before cooking it.

Whiskey Marinated Pork Tenderloin

  • 1 pork tenderloin, cleaned of fat & silverside
  • Marinade:
  • 1/4 cup Irish whiskey (see note below)
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp minced garlic
  • 1/2 tsp Szechuan pepper, ground
  • 2 dashes Texas Pete or other hot sauce
  • Cooking:
  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • salt
  • 1/2 cup red wine
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 1 Tbsp cornstarch dissolved in 1/4 cup water

Slice the pork in 2″ segments. Place the slices on a cutting board on the cut side; cover with plastic wrap. Using a meat mallet, pound the meat to 1/4″ to 3/8″ thick. This will need to be done in batches, depending on the size of the cutting board.

Mix the Marinade ingredients in a ziplock back. Add the pork and seal it, pressing out air. Manipulate the bag to ensure the pork is coated. Refrigerate at least 2 hours, up to 24 hours.

Heat the butter and oil in a large skillet until hot over medium-high heat. Remove the pork from the marinade and shake off excess. Reduce heat to medium.

Brown the pork on both sides in batches, avoiding crowding the meat. Season lightly with salt — it won’t need much. As each batch is done remove to a large bowl and keep warm. Add more oil if necessary.

When pork is all cooked add wine and stir to scrape up browned bits. Boil for 1 minutes to boil out the alcohol, then add chicken stock and bring back to a boil.

Add the cornstarch mixture a bit at a time, stirring well after each addition. The sauce should thicken so that it coats the back of a spoon. Make more cornstarch mixture if it’s not thick enough, or add a bit more chicken stock if it’s too thick.

Add the pork back to the sauce, stirring to coat the meat on both sides. Turn heat down to low and simmer for a few minutes to ensure the pork is cooked through. Serve over pasta.


This recipe works with a few substitutions:

Pork: use boneless chicken. This should work with boneless beef as well. Non-whitefish such as salmon, trout, or tuna should work as well. [This gives me an idea next time we buy salmon …]

Whiskey: use any whiskey. Rum or brandy will work as well. Don’t use vodka as it will provide no flavor.

Szechuan pepper: use regular pepper.

Wine: use white wine or a specialty wine such as port, Marsala, or sherry. Sake would make an interesting flavor.

Chicken Stock: use beef or vegetable stock. Veal stock would make it very rich.

Corn Starch: use flour or cornflour.

This recipe is really a method. All ingredients can be successfully substituted.

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