It’s that time of year again, the leaves are changing, the temperature (and humidity) is dropping, football is on, my St. Louis Cardinals are in the playoffs (hopefully) and my favorite beer on the store shelves – pumpkin ale. If I had it year round, it probably wouldn’t be, as the limited availability adds to my love for pumpkin ale, so I do my best to maximize my experience with it as you can see in the Apple Pumpkin Ribs that were inspired by the very beer I will use as a key ingredient in this post.
2 bottles pumpkin ale (O’Fallon Pumpkin Ale in this case)
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/3 cup salt
12 turns of black and white pepper each
2 pork tenderloins, tied together
1 tbsp pumpkin pie spice
1 tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp granulated garlic
1.5 tsp paprika
10 turns of black and white pepper
Tie the pork tenderloins together, fat end to skinny so they will cook evenly:
Mix the pumpkin ale, salt, garlic, and pepper in a ziplock bag and churn the beer until the salt is dissolved forming a brine:
Place the pork tenderloins in the brine and refrigerate overnight. I don’t normally brine more than about 12 hours.
The following day, combine the rub ingredients and mix together with your fingers or the back of a fork to break up any lumps. If you need more rub, follow the same ratio above which is equal parts pumpkin pie spice, brown sugar and granulated garlic and a half part of paprika. I was trying to balance out the two sweets and two savories.
Remove the pork tenderloins from the brine and rinse them off under cold water and pat dry with a paper towel. Then apply the rub:
Normally I salt anything just before I put it on the grill, but the brine covered that step.
Set up the grill for two zone cooking, coals on one side and nothing on the other with a target temp between 250-275. Place the pork tenderloins over the side with no coals and smoke wood on the other (in this case pear wood):
After 60 minutes of smoking / grilling, slide the tenderloins over to the hot side of the grill and sear all the way around, not just top and bottom, but left and right as well:
More cooking will happen during this searing process than the hour on the grill indirect because the sear is 360 degrees. Once seared, remove from the heat and let rest. After 10 minutes, carve and serve.
The spice of the beer permeated the meat all the way through and meshed really well with the pumpkin rub on the outside. This was definitely an outstanding flavor combo and I will do it again soon. If I don’t do it soon, I’ll have to wait till next fall.
If you liked the pumpkin ale brined pork tenderloins above you might want to check these out the many other ways we have done pork on this site by clicking here.
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- 2 bottles pumpkin ale (O’Fallon Pumpkin Ale in this case)
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- ⅓ cup salt
- 12 turns of black and white pepper each
- 2 pork tenderloins, tied together
- 1 tbsp pumpkin pie spice
- 1 tbsp brown sugar
- 1 tbsp granulated garlic
- 1.5 tsp paprika
- 10 turns of black and white pepper
- Combine all ingredients in a resealable plastic bag, churning it until the salt is dissolved
- Put in the fridge for 2-12 hours
- Remove from the brine, rinse off and pat dry with a paper towel
- Combine all the ingredients in bowl and mix together thoroughly
- Coat the outside of the tenderloins with the rub
- Prepare the grill for two zone/indirect grilling with coals and smoke wood on one side and nothing on the other
- Target internal temperature for the grill is 250-275
- Place the meat on the side of the grill with no coals
- After smoking / grilling for an hour, place the tenderloins over the coals and sear all the way around
- Once it has a nice crust around it, remove from the heat and let rest for 8-10 minutes
- Remove the ties, slice and serve