Iowa breaded pork tenderloin sandwich
This sounds like a sandwich right up my alley. I'll have to give it a try.
Recently, I had an hankering for Chicken Fried Steak.....but I did not have any beef available, so I used boneless pork loin, pounded and dusted in season flour, pan fried crisp and milk gravy. Very Simple. This sandwich has a couple of more steps, but it looks to have a better end result on the crispy/crunch factor.
If one where to ask a butcher for the meat to be prepared for them - how would one do that? I asked for inch medallians cut from the tenderloin then pounded out to about a 1/2 to a 1/4 inch thick. They were about the size of the bun, but seemed to be the right thickness. Seemed to me that it was probably a half portion. Should I start with a thicker cut? Then butterfly or not? Just keep it the same and eat two?
I buy a regular tenderloin and cut 1" to 1 1/2" fillets trying to keep the weight at 5 to 6 ounces each and pound them out closer to 1/4 ". Last time I made homemade hamburger buns that were probably 4 1/2 ' in diameter and there was breaded pork tenderloin hanging over the sides.
has anybody else observed a trend toward thicker, moister tenderloins and away from the thinner, pie-plate sized versions i, at least, grew up with. i think it is the fry-shack version of gentrification.
i am a fan of butterflying a tube of tenderloin before pounding. pounding a disc of meat results in a form of pork lace useful only as a superstructure for breading.
denver, i used to eat burgers at henry's in coralville.
and (i can't resist)--i'm not sure about iowa vs indiana on the tenderloin front. i'm more confident that iowa will top the hoosiers on the football field saturday.
My born and raised in Iowa wife has an appreciation for Breaded Pork Tenderloin sandwiches. As a treat, I was determined to recreate the taste at home when I found the following link which has a great recipe and many pictures to educate those who have never had the pleasure. Enjoy
I agree with some of the others, never knew anyone to make them at home but they are found in bars, diners and drive-ins around Indiana-Illinois-Iowa with Iowa being the best. Here in Chicagoland, they're rare to find, mostly a down state thing. I think the reason why they are better eaten "out" is that the commercial fryer cooks them at a higher temp and gives them a nice crispiness. I like mine with mayo and yellow mustard.
I have never had an Iowa, Illinois or Indiana breaded pork tenderloin sandwich. I am fortunate to live in Vt, where family farms are the source of many delicious meats, poultry and cheeses. A local butcher gets his pasture raised pork from a nearby farm, and slices the loin into paper thin cutlets. If I can get there before they are sold out (which always happens) I grab a package and prepare them per his directions. Dip them in flour, egg and crumbs, fry them and serve them on a bun with pickles and mayo. I have been hooked since the first time I made them, as is my whole family. Who knows, maybe he was raised in the Midwest.
Here's a recipe:
Compton's Breaded Pork Tenderloins
4 pork tenderloin cutlets (3- to 4-oz ea)
1 Beaten egg
3/4 cup Milk
2 cups All-purpose flour
2 tablespoons Cornmeal
1 teaspoon Paprika
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
Shortening or cooking oil
Condiments such as ketchup, mustard, onion, tomato, lettuce
Place each tenderloin cutlet between 2 pieces of clear plastic wrap. Using the smooth side of a meat mallet or the bottom of a small frying pan, pound meat to 1/8-inch thickness. This is important! The tenderloins have to be very thin. The meat should be much bigger than the bun. Remove plastic wrap and place on baking sheet. Freeze meat for about 10 minutes or until it's stiff. If you do this, the meat won't curl up when you fry it.
In a bowl, combine egg and milk. In another bowl, combine flour, cornmeal, paprika, salt and pepper.
Dip each tenderloin into egg mixture, then into flour mixture, pressing the flour into the meat. Repeat dipping in egg, then flour mixture.
In a large skillet, heat 1/2 inch of shortening or cooking oil until it sizzles when a pinch of cornmeal is added. Fry the tenderloins, 1 or 2 at a time, for 1 1/2 to 2 minutes on each side, turning once. Keep warm in oven while you fry the remaining tenderloins. Serve warm on buns. Pass the condiments.
Makes 4 servings.
From Dee Vieschke's Compton Diner in IL
Paraphrased from a recipe printed in Midwest Living, April 1993
For one of the best go to the Gnawbone Marathon Food and Fuel in Gnawbone, IN. It is between Columbus, IN. and Nashville, IN. It is a gas station. They make their own from scratch, picnic tables insode or take it with you. Sterns wrote it up in Gourmet and the locals could not get near it for awhile. Luckily the food did not suffer. Just a little ways west off of I65 and worth a detour. This is the midwest and if you ask for mayo you will receive a packet of miracle whip :-( . I tote my own mayo now.
Indiana tenderloin is similar to the Illinois except at my house, I am also transplanted northern New Yorker. I use real pork tenderloin and not plain loin. Cut them into 4th's and pound each piece out very thin. I soak in an egg wash and half and half mixture, sometimes addinf a bit of seasoning to the wash. Then, dredge in panko mixed with salt andb pepper. Pan fry in 1.5 " oil in a cast iron skillet. Truly delicious!
I don't know about an IOWA breaded pork tenderloin, everyone around here knows the best tenderloins are made in Illinois :) Sorry. I'm a transplant (from NYC) and have been brainwashed! They truly are a treat, though not exactly haute cuisine. Although popular at many "family" restaurants here in the Midwest, most people don't make them at home. Having said that, a friend just gave me the following recipe. Yes, they really are served "dinner-plate-sized" with a single (store-bought) plain hamburger bun. It is acceptable to add any of the following condiments: ketchup, mustard (plain yellow), BBQ sauce, pickle relish and/or pickle chips. If served for dinner though, forgo the bun and serve with REAL mashed potatoes.
Dinner Plate-sized Tenderloin Sandwich
1 4-6" long boneless center cut loin of pork
1 cup milk
crushed saltine crackers
lard or solid vegetable shortening
Cut the loin into slices 1" thick. Place each between 2 pieces of wax paper and "beat the hell out of it" with a meat tenderizer (flat side)until the slice is nearly paper thin.
Combine the egg and milk. Dip the pounded pieces into the milk mixture, then into the cracker crumbs (you can add ground black pepper to the crumbs if you like). Fry, one at a time, in hot fat until golden brown. Serve on a hamburger bun.
Never made pork tenderloins, but ate many of them in Iowa with some sort of decadently yummy mayo/pickle sauce. Not quite tartar sauce, but I don't remember the distinction. Might be worth a post on the midwest board.
Home-cooking-wise, I've never met with pork of Iowa quality anywhere, any time.
I have never heard of, nor thought of, BBQ sauce on a tenderloin. Perhaps they need that in Illinois. ;-)
Most are just served with ketchup, mustard, pickles and onion. Sometimes chili and cheese.
They have them everywhere in Iowa, but quality varies greatly. I'm considering personally rating some of the more famous places around the state. Weather being nice and the urge to drop the top and cruise, might as well do it with purpose.
Hrmph. As an iowan (of sorts), i take umbrage at the suggestion that an Illinausean would know anything about pork tenderloin! Why, there are more hogs than people in IA!
Ok, now that i got that silliness off my chest, I have to agree with Anne. I actually don't know many people who cook/serve pork tenderloin at home. I always thought of it as diner/eat out food.
Good luck with your home cooking!
I must take exception. The breaded pork tenderloin sandwich is a Hoosier creation only transplanted to Illinois and Iowa. You will probably find more pork tenderloin sandwich serving restaurants per capita in Indiana than anywhere else. The mother of BPT's is Nick's Kitchen in Huntington, IN. The Iowa Pork Board doesn't even post a BPT sandwich recipe on their web site.
The drop off in places serving BPTs is dramatic once you are outside of Indiana, Illinois and Iowa. And when you do find them beyond the "I" state axis they start to take on variants from the traditional like adding cheese and serving them on bread instead of buns.
My Dad made them at his restaurant, Henry's, in Coralville, IOWA, during the 60's and 70's. The Best around.
Only change from Anne's recipe though was double breading and no milk or egg wash. We first breaded them in very fine Saltine Cracker crumbs - pressing very firmly instead of using egg/milk wash. Then rebreaded them with coarse crushed saltines. Double crunch and very tender.