Sunday, September 9, 2018

Bubba's Spicy Cocoa Pork Tenderloin by guest Dorothy St. James

Today we're delighted to welcome guest author, Dorothy St. James. Or, you might know her as Dorothy McFalls. Either way, her books will entertain you and this recipe will tickle your taste buds. 
Plus, she has a bookgiveaway! So read to the end, and please leave a comment.
Take it away, Dorothy!

Only modern society says that chocolate recipes need to be sweet. Chocolate and cocoa have historically been used in many savory dishes. The bittersweet flavor adds deep notes (or umami) that I’ve been craving lately. When I was writing a (humorous) romantic scene in the third book of my Southern Chocolate Shop Mystery series, In Cold Chocolate, the use of a pork recipe provided an excuse for several chuckles. At least it did for me. As an added bonus, pork rubs recipes often add cocoa because the two flavors work so well together.

The next time you’re looking to wow that someone special in your life, follow the advice of my book’s good-ole-boy, Bubba, and make your sweetie a tender and flavorful pork tenderloin with a rich garlic sauce.

Mix the spices. Hmm...I wish you could smell this!

Rub the spicy mixture on the pork tenderloins and then drizzle with olive oil.

Bake at 400 degrees for 25 to 30 minutes or until temperature at center of pork reaches 145 degrees Fahrenheit.

Let’s get started on the garlic sauce.

Sauté the garlic, onions, salt, and pepper.

Add the rest of the ingredients, including more cocoa. Things are really starting to smell good!

Straight from the oven. I let the meat rest for at least 10 minutes.

Cut the tenderloin in 1/2” slices, and then drizzle the garlic sauce over it. Serve with potatoes, rice, and vegetable, or even make a delicious sandwich. Everyone, even the pickiest eaters, will be happy to gobble it up.

1 tbsp cocoa powder
2 tsp allspice
2 tbsp dark brown sugar
1 tsp sea salt
1 tsp black pepper
2 1-lb pork tenderloins, trimmed
3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil

Garlic Sauce:
4 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 onion, finely chopped
1 tsp sea salt
½ tsp black pepper
3 tbsp cocoa powder
½ cup vegetable broth
1 tsp red wine vinegar
1 can (14.75 oz) crushed tomatoes

Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Make sure the oven rack is in the center position for an even cooking.

Whisk cocoa powder, allspice, brown sugar, salt, and pepper in small bowl. Place pork on foil-covered baking sheet. Rub cocoa mixture into pork. Drizzle with olive oil. Roast 25 to 30 minutes or until temperature at center of pork reaches 145 degrees Fahrenheit. Remove from oven. Let rest for 10 minutes.

While meat is cooking, make the sauce. Heat oil in medium saucepan over medium heat. Add garlic, onions, salt, and pepper. Cook until onions are transparent. Stir in cocoa powder, broth, vinegar, and tomatoes. Simmer covered for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Cut pork into ½ inch slices. Spoon sauce over the pork and serve.

Sea turtles, chocolate turtles, and a murder chill the eccentric residents of Camellia Beach in the latest Southern Chocolate Shop Mystery: In Cold Chocolate.You could be the lucky winner of a signed copy. Be sure to leave a comment before tomorrow at 6 PM along with your email contact information.

About Dorothy St. James
A lover of puzzles and perhaps a bit too nosey about other people’s lives, Dorothy St. James is a former Folly Beach beach bum. She now lives in Mt. Pleasant, South Carolina with her husband, precocious daughter, a slightly (OK, terribly) needy dogs, and the friendliest cat you’d ever meet. She has degrees in Wildlife Biology and Public Administration and as an urban planner, worked for many years telling the stories of small southern towns.

Author of a dozen novels, Dorothy enjoys writing both cozy mysteries and romance. Her works have been nominated for many awards including: the Southern Independent Bookseller’s Alliance Southern Book Prize, Romantic Times Reviewers’ Choice Award, Reviewers International Organization Award, National Reader’s Choice Award, CataRomance Reviewers’ Choice Award, and The Romance Reviews Today Perfect 10! Award. Reviewers have called her work: “amazing”, “perfect”, “filled with emotion”, and “lined with danger.”

Twitter: @dorothymcfalls


  1. I'm currently reading the first book in your series and really enjoying it, Dorothy. This newest book looks equally delightful, and what a fun cover! mbradeen [at] yahoo [dot] com

    1. Fantastic! I'm so glad to hear that you're enjoying Asking for Truffle. Good luck!

    2. I don't eat meat, so I guess I'll have to suffer with eating my chocolate sweet. But, I think I'll live. Not too sure I'd survive without chocolate though.
      Thanks for the giveaway!

  2. Oh my, I can't wait to try this recipe! Sounds so yummy!

    I've enjoyed the first 2 books in this series & look forward to this new one. Thanks for the opportunity to win it!


    1. If you do try it, let me know how you like it. Even my picky daughter will gobble down this dish. I'm so glad to hear that you're enjoying the series. Good luck!

  3. The recipe sounds great! Going to try it!

    Haven’t read this series, but I will definitely check it out!

    1. Thank you! I think you'll enjoy both the series and the recipe. Just as a head's up, the first two books in the series are Kindle Monthly deals for September and on sale for $1.99.

  4. This is a new series to me, but I love the cover and the premise. And that tenderloin looks delicious!
    Wendy Clark-MamaHen

    1. Thank you! I hope you try the recipe. It's a hit with my family.

  5. Sounds good to me, but I think my husband would have a cow if I tried to put cocoa on his precious pork lol
    Donah42 at aol dot com

  6. Oh my word, what a recipe! I never thought of using cocoa in a rub. The flavor must be out of this world! Thank you for sharing the recipe!
    I am looking forward to reading this book in the series.

  7. This series looks fun and I love that little dog. Thanks for the contest. ckmbeg (at) gmail (dot) com

  8. We love pork tenderloin but have never had it season like this. Looks delicious. Will be trying this. The cover of the book is adorable, and the story sounds like fun. Thanks for the giveaway.

  9. Delectable recipe which is perfect for fall. Your book sounds delightful and I would enjoy this fall reading. elliotbencan(at)hotmail(dot)com

  10. This series sounds unique and wonderful. The story interests me greatly. What a great recipe to try this season. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

  11. A truly unique recipe. Who would think to combine cocoa powder with other ingredients for a pork rub?

  12. WOW! Bubba's Spicy Cocoa Pork Tenderloin sounds to die for and one I'm going to have to try. We love pork tenderloin and this would make for a wonderful variation. I can imagine the smell it gives the whole house while cooking.

    I greatly enjoy reading books by Dorothy St. James and this one is definitely on my TBR list. I can't want for the opportunity to read "In Cold Chocolate".
    2clowns at arkansas dot net

    1. Thank you! I'm glad you enjoy my books. This recipe does make the house smell delicious. And even my picky daughter will eat this. Good luck!

  13. This is my fourth try at a comment. It's been misbehaving.

    This sounds really delicious.
    I add cocoa powder to chili and beef stew to add extra flavor depth.

    libbydodd at comcast dot net

    1. Thank you for being persistent! That's a good point about the cocoa powder. It doesn't make it sweet. But it does add a nice depth to the flavor. Good luck!

  14. I’ve never tried cocoa powder on meat.
    sgiden at verizon(.)net

  15. Have to try this, Dorothy! We’re going to be in Mt Pleasant next month. Is there a book store with your books signed?

    1. There is! Buxton Books in downtown Charleston has my books. I'll be having a signing there on October 7th (in case that's when you'll be in town.) I often bring chocolate treats to my book events. :)

  16. This recipe sounds good. So excited to read the book! I love this series!!! mcastor07 (at) gmail (dot) com.

  17. This recipe sounds delicious. I have not read any books in this series yet. Love this book cover!
    marypopmom (at) yahoo (dot) com