Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Greek-ish Pork Pinwheels

I wasn't sure if this meal would be good or a Greek tragedy. Fortunately, it turned out excellent.

I daydream about food on the way home from work most evenings. I think about what ingredients I have at home, things I've seen or cooked before, and just let the thoughts collide. Tonight my thoughts centered around a pork tenderloin that I had thawed out.

I thought about Chris Lilly's Pork Tenderloin Pinwheels that I have made before, stuffed with bacon, rolled in pecans and brushed with a mustard sauce. But the feta and fresh spinach I had at home made me think more along Greek lines. Here's what I came up with.

Nibble Me This Greek Pork Pinwheels

1 ea pork tenderloin
30 spinach leaves (about 1/2 cup?)
1/4 cup feta cheese
1/4 cup sun dried tomatoes, diced

1/2 cup olive oil
3 Tablespoon lemon juice
1/4 cup fig infused balsamic vinegar (sub red wine vinegar)
1/4 cup white onion, finely diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried thyme
salt & pepper to taste

Whisk together all of the marinade ingredients. Reserve 1/4 cup of the marinade for the Greek rice.

Slice the tenderloin lengthwise into about 5-6 slices, about 1/4" thick each as pictured.

TIP: First, put the tenderloin into the freezer for about 30 minutes to partially freeze it. Slices much easier. Second, most tenderloins have a "flat side" due to being packaged two to a pack. Use that flat side as a solid base.

Top each slice with layers of spinach, feta, and sun dried tomatoes. Drizzle some of the marinade on top.

Carefully (i.e. make a hell of a mess trying to keep it all together) roll up each slice from one end to the other and secure with a toothpick.
Place the pinwheels in a small casserole and apply remaining marinade. Let sit for 1-2 hours.

Prepare your grill for a direct heat cook at 375f. On the Big Green Egg, I had plain lump charcoal burning with no wood and I used a raised grid extender. That's about 8 inches from the fire so that would be the top rack on most other grills.

TIP: The oily marinade will cause flare ups so keep your grill lid closed to control the flow of oxygen.

Grill the pinwheels for 8 minutes a side.

We were very pleased with this. They weren't very photogenic but the pork was tender and packed with flavor thanks to the marinade from inside and out.

For a side dish, I made this Greek Tomato Pilaf and added the reserved 1/4 cup of marinade at the point you add the dry rice to the saute. I give that recipe two thumbs up too.


  1. Oh welcome to my world!

    I bet those would be good smoked with pecan!

  2. Chris, these are gorgeous and would be a terrific for a dinner party. We don't have a grill where we are right now, but I'm bookmarking this to prepare when we return home. We have a friend who's of Greek heritage and this would be a perfect surprise to serve him. I do believe he'll be impressed.

    Stay warm and keep grilling.

  3. "Make a hell of a mess trying to keep it all together" - LOL! That sounds like me in the kitchen:D I think I'm kinda of messy cook.

    I've only seen pork tenderloin sliced into medallions. You have opened my eyes to a whole new method of slicing pork. Thanks for the introduction to pork pinwheels. I see them in the very near future:D

  4. This seems like something that a good contestant on "Chopped" would make. Do you watch that on Food Network? I'm not even much of a foodie and I LOVE that show!

  5. Chris, what a great way to prepare this dish. There is something special about each serving being made separately. This is truly a keeper recipe. Many thanks...

  6. Looks excellent and I have several tenderloins in the freezer I need to use. Will give this a try soon.

  7. That looks great. I would forget to take out the toothpick.

  8. Wow! I'm all over this one! Have written my shopping list and as soon as I hit post comment I'll be on my way to Safeway to grab what I need to make read my mind/dreams...a Greek dinner that isn't lamb - drooling already!

  9. I think they look amazing and so flavorful! I too daydream about food.

  10. What a great idea... love everything about these... you will see them soon on my site!

  11. I LOVE this idea! It looks delicious with these ingredients and I can see doing it with other combos according to MY fridge contents! Fun to hear that you daydream about food on the way home. That's exactly what I do, but I think your daydreams are better than mine. Keep dreaming and sharing!

  12. What an outstanding and elegant pork dish! Marvelous ingredient in the marinade that compliment the spinach, feta and tomatoes. Very creative and amazing!

  13. Now you are speaking to my inner Greek woman. Reading the ingredients and looking at the pictures takes to me a warm summer evening eating out on the patio, the grill still smoking in the background.... Maybe a nice beer and some feta and pita on the side...oh! and some tomatoes and onions simply dressed with salt, pepper and olive oil!

  14. OPAH!!! Looks delish - I love doing greek food over a fire - I hate having to do it on a George Foreman grill in the winter.

  15. Chris, what a WONderful idea! I've got half of a pork tenderloin in the freezer that I didn't use in my Hoosier Pork Sliders. Can't wait to try this. They look great.

  16. OMG these look freaking fan-tabulous! I am flagging this for the future!

  17. So YOU'RE Louis XIV you GEEKish-Pork Pinwheel. Did you get a new camera? GREG

  18. Love all the pictures!!I am a pork fan..... I am drooling here!!!They look absolutely delicious...I am printing this recipe.

  19. That looks and sounds great! We did a pork tenderloin Mutumbre once- stuffed with cheese strips, sausage strips, onion and bell pepper strips..when cooked then cut into disks- it looked like a church window cookie!

  20. These definitely look delicious Chris! Perfect for a main dish or as part of a nice party buffet. Yummy :-)

  21. Dude, I so need glasses. I thought you said "greenish pork pinwheels."

  22. I like the way you roll. Hee. Hee.

  23. I think like that all the time too - and my waistline and rear end will attest to it.

    These pinwheels sound wonderful and what a great presentation! Hello YUM!

  24. Chris - Those pinwheels are just lovely!

    Have you actually tried them with red wine vinegar, rather than the fig balsamic. That's a pretty drastic change from sweet to vinegary! I'd imagine it would pull the recipe in another direction entirely.

  25. I think I could totally wrap my head around this (and my mouth) YUM!

  26. Those pork pinwheels look really tasty!

  27. Loving these. For real! Who would say no to that?

  28. Sounds yummy. Can this be baked/ broiled in an oven? Could try it in winter in that case.


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