Simply Kid Chefs: Pork Tenderloin with Fried Okra and Pickled Watermelon

This week, our youngest turned 8 and made a special dinner to boot. We have been watching Master Chef Junior as a family and are really enjoying it! It has been amazing to see all of the dishes the kids have created. Another plus is the wonderful sportsmanship and camaraderie between the contestants. Both boys love the show; seeing what everyone creates and to their surprise without formal recipes.

Our youngest began pulling out cookbooks and came across this old Food and Wine cookbook

He immediately noticed Graham Elliot from Master Chef on the cover. We found his recipes in the book and he selected the pork tenderloin. I wasn’t sure how he would do with the different flavors but followed my rule of not discouraging based on my own perception.

We couldn’t find some of the ingredients, but substituted ground cardamon and ground coriander for the brine (about 1/8 teaspoon of each). Ground sumac also proved to be impossible to find for our timeline and we left it out.

The chef was able to do most of the preparations. I did the stove work, but he did put the okra in the oil.

The brine took longer to cool down than we anticipated. Here is the chef waiting for it to come to room temperature. Like a watched pot never boils, a watched brine doesn’t cool 😉

The meal was amazing!! I was a little nervous about the okra as I’ve never had it before. We could have eaten more! I would definitely increase the amount of okra when we make it again. The watermelon was delicious and really complimented the pork.

The recipe was a little intimidating at first, but really not difficult. Timing was the most complicated aspect. The chef wanted to keep moving and there was a lot of down time. Definitely allow enough time for the brine to cool when planning the meal. Everything else is relatively quick.

Do you watch Master Chef Junior? Have you made a brine before? What are your thoughts on okra?

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