BY TIM MALM, RIPTIDE IOWA BUREAU
In Iowa, eating is serious business. Portions are typically large. Quality is pretty good to excellent and always priced to provide a good value. The number one item on the menu of regional Iowa specialty cuisine has to be the "tenderloin." This sandwich consists of a breaded and deep-fat-fried piece of tenderized pork tenderloin, served on a bun, with your choice of condiments. Seeing the sandwich, one is first struck by the size of the meat. It always dwarfs the bun. This is an essential feature. If the meat isn't at least three inches in diameter larger than the bun, then the sandwich is immediately judged inadequate. I've eaten tenderloins where the meat has even obscured the plate the sandwich was served on. Imagine the planet Jupiter is a tenderloin sandwich. Jupiter's red spot would be the bun. That's a good tenderloin! Topped with mustard, ketchup, and onion, the sandwich above retails for $5 (for two of them) at the employee-owned HyVee grocery store on Agency Street in Burlington, Iowa every Tuesday. Your drink is not included.