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Easy smoked pork tenderloin - a delicious meal for springtime

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This is a quick and easy smoker recipe that I first saw on www.smoking-meat.com (courtesy of Jeff Phillips). There's something carnival-like about eating things that are served on a stick or skewer, be it cotton candy, corn dogs or barbequed pork. Now that spring is finally chased away the last dregs of our seemingly endless winter, these treats clamor to be enjoyed at your backyard picnic table, along with quinoa, smoked onions and an ice-cold beer.

If you have the inkling to fire up the smoker and make some delicious barbeque for dinner this week, these pork skewers are quick enough to smoke before dinner. It will help to have the pork prepped the night before, and you may want to cut out of work a few minutes early. Remember that, like fly fishing, time spent tending your smoker isn't subtracted from the sum total of your life.

Get the following ingredients together and prepare as follows:

Pork tenderloin - all silver skin and connective tissue peeled off
Worcestershire sauce
Easy barbeque rub (equal parts chili powder, cumin, brown sugar, garlic powder, black pepper, salt, cayenne pepper) red pepper flakes (if you need some extra heat) One large red onion Barbeque sauce of choice Honey Bamboo skewers

Follow the steps in the attached list and enjoy!

Pork skewers
Pork skewers Rusty Shackleford

Pork skewers

Lay the tenderloin on your cutting board and slice it thinly, diagnonally.
Combine the pork in a large ziplock bag with Worcestershire sauce, 1/3 cup of rub, and a few tablespoons of red pepper flakes if you want more heat.  Allow the strips to marinate overnight in the fridge.

Optimum smoker temperature
Optimum smoker temperature Rusty Shackleford

Optimum smoker temperature

Build your fire and allow the smoker to warm up to the 225F mark.
While the smoker is warming up, thread the bamboo skewers thru the pork strips. 
Work the skewer thru the top then bottom so that the pork forms a fan pattern of sorts.
If your skewers are a foot long (standard) you should be able to fit two pork strips per skewer.

Applewood on the coals
Applewood on the coals Rusty Shackleford

Applewood on the coals

Slice your large red onion into 1/2 inch thick slices - run a skewer through the onion to keep all the rings together. Sprinkle both sides of the onion with rub, and place the onion on the smoker along with the pork. A thick chunk of apple or other fruit wood on the coals will make all the smoke you need for this recipe.

pork skewers - beginning
pork skewers - beginning Rusty Shackleford

pork skewers - beginning

Keep a close eye on your smoker - depending on how thick you sliced the pork, the skewers may be done in 45 minutes to an hour.  About 30 minutes into the smoke, brush the pork and the onions with a mixture of barbeque sauce and honey.  Use whatever sauce you like - lately, I've been sticking with some of KC's best (OK Joe's Cowtown or LC's special sauce).

Pork skewers - finished
Pork skewers - finished Rusty Shackleford

Pork skewers - finished

Once the pork temp hits 140F, it's are ready to take off.  Cover it in a dish for a few minutes to let the temp climb a couple degrees.  Pour a fresh beer into your glass, take a big sip, and then dig into your first real barbeque dinner of the spring.  Enjoy, and tight lines!

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