This is my favorite style of barbecue sauce as it has all the elements I like in a barbecue sauce: sweetness, smokiness and some spice. Once you find a good sauce recipe it’s easy to modify by adding or eliminating flavors to come up with a completely new sauce. Common add-ins are liquor and beer, different chiles, different sweeteners like honey or sugar, dried herbs, citrus flavors via juice and zest and even more exotic flavors like tamarind and chocolate. Honey and chipotle is one of the more common variations seen these days so don’t be afraid to try something new. Just remember that sugar will burn so if your sauce is really sweet don’t use a lot of it until the end or better yet use it only for dressing and dipping.
- 4 cups tomato sauce
- 1 1/2 cups cider vinegar
- 1 cup cola (Coke, Pepsi, RC, Dr. Pepper)
- 1/4 cup steak sauce
- 1/4 cup yellow mustard
- 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
- 3 tablespoons molasses (robust if available)
- 3 tablespoons soy sauce
- 3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
- 1 teaspoon hot sauce (Tabasco, Cholula, Tapatio)
- 1/2 teaspoon liquid smoke
- 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons bbq rub
- 1 tablespoon chile powder
- 1 tablespoons lemon pepper
- 1 tablespoon mustard powder
- 2 teaspoons garlic powder
First, combine all the wet ingredients in a large saucepan and slowly bring to a low boil over medium heat. Too hot too fast will scorch the sugars and you cannot fix that. If that happens throw it out and start over. You will thank me later.
Second, combine all the dry ingredients and mix well.
Third, reduce the heat on the saucepan and stir in the dry ingredients. Let your sauce simmer on low for 30 minutes or so to thicken it up and concentrate all those flavors. The sauce will also thicken once it cools down so don’t over cook it. Whatever sauce you don’t use just transfer to a jar and refrigerate where it will keep for about 30 days.
Collard greens are a green large loose leaf vegetable in the same family as broccoli and cabbage, though it more closely resembles kale and spring greens. Collards are a good source of vitamin C and soluble fiber, and also contain multiple nutrients with potent anticancer properties. It is a relatively thick leaf with a thick fibrous stem in the middle. You basically use your knife to follow the sides of the stem to cut it out.
Make a short stack of cut leaves and then do a rough chop. Some folks like to roll the leaves and do a chiffonade but I like my food more rustic, plus this is easier for everyone.
I use the OXO brand salad spinner, this model is a few years old but still works like a champ. I take the basket piece to hold my cut collards.
Once all the collards are destemmed and chopped I rinse them off in the sink, shake the basket a bit, then rinse again. If your collards are a little wilted, you just need to soak them in cold water for a bit. This works with a variety of veggies! Once you are happy the greens are sufficiently rinsed, pop them into the spinner and blast away. I again do it twice just to get out as much water as possible.
Now we need to get the fat we are cooking these in, BACON! Get out 3 or 4 slices of bacon (smoked thick slice is best) and chop into small pieces. Get out the pan you are using to cook your greens in, I usually pick a tall enough pan to hold all the greens and one that has a lid. Over medium low heat get the bacon cooking, we need to render out the fat to cook the greens in. A vegetarian variation would be to use olive oil or your favorite cooking oil.
Once your bacon is good and cooked add your greens, reducing the heat to low. Give them a good stir trying to coat all the greens with fat. Cover and let the heat and steam do work. No salt at this time as the greens are reducing and a little salt could turn into a lot of salt. Plus the bacon has a natural salty flavor it is imparting to the greens.
Turn occasionally to avoid any burning, plus getting the hot fat on all the leaves will aid the wilting process. After a couple of minutes add a splash or two of a light vinegar, I use rice vinegar.
After 30 minutes you should see something like this:
Taste and season with salt and pepper, more vinegar or a shot of hot sauce.
And finally the finished product:
With the Super Bowl coming up, I decided to make some wings since it has been a while since I’ve had some. My favorite watering hole closed and I haven’t ventured out to find a new one. So in the meantime…
- 1/2 C oil, vegetable or neutral in flavor
- 2 C soy sauce
- 2 C dry sherry
- 1 C honey
- 2 T ground ginger
- 1 T garlic powder
- 2 T dry mustard
- 1 T onion powder
- 1 T fresh ginger, minced
- 4 large cloves garlic, minced
- 2 T onion, minced
- 1 t cayenne chile powder (optional)
Mix all ingredients together in a pot of sufficient size. If cooking in a smoker baste with sauce several times. If cooking on a high heat grill baste once. When crispy they are done!