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Grilled Pork Tenderloin al Pastor with Avocado Crema

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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 3 hr 15 min (includes marinating, cooling and resting times)
  • Active: 20 min
  • Yield: 10 to 12 servings
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1 cup pineapple juice

One 1-ounce package achiote paste 

4 chipotle chiles in adobo sauce 

2 cloves garlic 

Kosher salt

2 pork tenderloins, about 1 1/2 pounds each, trimmed of silver skin 

Neutral oil, for oiling the grill grates and drizzling

1 medium yellow onion, sliced into 1-inch rounds

Freshly ground black pepper

Avocado Crema, recipe follows

Chopped fresh cilantro, for garnish

Avocado Crema:

1/2 cup fresh cilantro

1/4 cup Mexican cream or sour cream

1 avocado, chopped 

1 lime, zested and juiced

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper


Special equipment:
metal or wooden skewers (soak in water before using)
  1. Add the pineapple juice, achiote paste, chipotles, garlic and 1 1/2 teaspoons salt to a food processor and puree until uniform. Reserve about 1/2 cup of the marinade for glazing. Put the remaining marinade and the pork in a resealable plastic bag and marinate for 2 hours in the fridge, rotating if necessary halfway through.
  2. Heat a grill to high heat; clean and oil the grill grates.
  3. Thread the onion rounds on the skewers, drizzle with oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill the onions, developing a deep char on each side, about 10 minutes per side. Set aside to cool.
  4. Lightly season the tenderloins once more, then grill on all 4 sides, frequently basting with the reserved marinade, until golden brown and the internal temperature registers 145 degrees F, 8 to 10 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate, tent loosely with foil and rest for 5 minutes.
  5. Mince the cooled onions and season again. Slice the pork and serve with a dollop of Avocado Crema and garnished with chopped cilantro and charred onions.

Avocado Crema:

  1. Put the cilantro, Mexican cream, avocado and lime zest and juice in a food processor and run until smooth. Season with salt and pepper. Cover with plastic wrap pressed on top until serving, to keep the avocado from browning.

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