When I got up this morning, I decided barbequed chicken is in order for supper. Only, there’s no bbq sauce in the pantry O no! Wot to DO?! Make some! The ingredients are things you probably have in the fridge or pantry, and if you don’t, you SHOULD! I recognize not everyone is a booze drinking heathen like I am, and the sauce is fine without the bourbon, but for summertime cooking and if you intend to use recipes of mine, I recommend you get to the package store and buy a pint of Evan Williams. If you happen upon the Sunday School teacher while you’re there, tell him it’s for medicinal purposes. A good BBQ chicken is definitely the best medicine this time of year.
Rootie’s Own Bourbon BBQ sauce
1 small sweet onion (I use Vidalias) chopped real fine
couple tablespoon vegetable oil in a pot
Saute the onions over medium heat until they are translucent (this is called “sweating”) then add:
2 heaping spoonfuls of minced garlic from a jar (or 5-6 cloves fresh garlic, minced)
cook a few minutes more. Then add:
1-1/2 cups ketchup
1/4 cup worcestershire sauce
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 tablespoon dark molasses (NOT blackstrap! If you use blackstrap, add about 1 teaspoon)
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
3 shots liquid smoke
1/2 teaspoon ground red (or cayenne) pepper
Mix all this up really well and turn the stove down as low as you can. Simmer for a few minutes and add
1/4 cup decent bourbon
Stir well and simmer a little bit longer, put a lid on it and let it sit until you’re ready to use it. I recommend that you make it early in the day and allow it to sit several hours. Taste it several times and adjust the flavors as you see fit. Add some heat, or sweeten it, another shot of liquid smoke, or a splash more of bourbon…whatever your taste is. Set some of the sauce aside to serve with the chicken when it’s done.
To fix the chicken, coat it in the sauce and grill over a low heat for a while, brushing occasionally with the sauce. Serve some more sauce on the side when you put the chicken on the table.
I am a huge fan of liquid smoke. I use it in beans, baked beans, barbeques, marinades, pretty much anything that tastes like it was once cooked over an open fire by a guy named “Crusty”. Since I am not the woodfire snob that my brother is, and instead possess a gas grill, I think grilled stuff benefits from the (probably cancer-causing) addition of the liquid smoke. It’s not expensive and a bottle lasts forever. Get some.
Molasses is a wonderful sweetener to add to marinades, and it blends really well with the liquid smoke. Whenever I have a savory recipe that calls for brown sugar (like baked beans), I think it benefits from a dollop of molasses as well. It kind of deepens the flavor a bit. Blackstrap molasses is to regular molasses like a habanero pepper is to a banana pepper. It’s like…MolassesDammit, and very strong. It looks like tar. If you have never used it, I recommend you stick to regular Grandma’s Molasses, unless you’re feeling brave. Use it ONLY for savories, as it is completely unsuitable (in my opinion) for sweet things (for instance, you’d use molasses in gingersnaps, but blackstrap just wouldn’t work.)