Cocoa Crusted Pork Tenderloin

Cocoa Crusted Pork

This month for Secret Recipe Club, I was assigned to the lovely blog, Lynsey Lou's. After reading through Lynsey's entire blog, I had bookmarked a whole bunch of recipes that I wanted to try. And, as she kept updating, I kept bookmarking! Just about every single recipe on her blog looks like something I would make, or something I have made. I had to laugh because we both posted a recipe for Chiles Rellenos right around the same time as each other, which confirmed the fact that she and I seem to have similar tastes when it comes to food! The recipe I ultimately chose was this one for pork tenderloin. Pork tenderloin is not something I get to have often, because of all the foods Joel does eat, pork is one he is not a huge fan of. So, when I made this dish, he made himself a piece of salmon, and then we shared our side dishes of Japanese sweet potato and roasted broccoli. I have to say, I was very impressed with this spice rub! I was a little afraid that it might be very sweet from the cocoa nibs and cocoa powder, but contrary to that belief, it was just the opposite! The other spices, like the cumin and allspice, really shone through, and the cocoa gave the flavor balance. Joel made me try a bite of his salmon (which was pretty good), and in turn, I made him take a taste of my pork. I was pleased when he said that he liked it! I'm not expecting him to dive right in and have pork for dinner anytime soon, but that's fine, because for now, I get to eat the leftovers! Thanks for sharing, Lynsey! I had a great time getting to "know" you through your blog!!

2 tablespoons Cocoa Nibs
2 tablespoons Brown Sugar
1 teaspoon Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
1/2 teaspoon Freshly Ground Black Pepper
1 teaspoon Cumin
1 teaspoon Paprika
1/2 teaspoon Ground Allspice
1/2 teaspoon Cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon Kosher or Sea Salt
1 teaspoon Dried Thyme
1 1/2 pounds Pork Tenderloin
2 tablespoon Vegetable Oil

Place the cocoa nibs in a spice grinder, or use a mortar and pestle, and grind until broken into smaller pieces. Combine all of the ingredients, except for the pork and oil, in a bowl and mix together.  Trim off any fat from the pork, rinse, and pat dry with a paper towel. Lightly drizzle oil over the pork and coat with a generous amount of the rub. In an oven-proof skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of oil over medium-high heat. Add the pork and sear until golden brown on all sides, about 8 minutes. Transfer the skillet to a 450 degree preheated oven and bake until a thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the meat reads 145 degrees, about 15 minutes. Remove from the oven, cover with foil, and let rest for 10 minutes before slicing and serving.