Skip to comments.The Truth about BBQ Sauce
Posted on 03/02/2006 7:47:01 AM PST by stainlessbanner
Barbecue sauces have a uniquely Southern and Western U.S. history. Most experts agree that the practice of adding sauce and spices to meat and fish began early in our history, with Native Americans teaching the art to early European settlers. The natives probably developed the process as part of an attempt to keep meats and fish from spoiling quickly. Salt played a major role in those early barbecue sauces, and salt is a well-known preservative in the meat curing process.
Because the nations first European arrivals lived on the East Coast of America, that part of the country is credited with spawning the original barbecue sauce styles. First and foremost, there are the various Carolina barbecue sauces. The most widely known are East Carolina, Piedmont, and South Carolina varieties. East Carolina barbecue sauce consists of vinegar, salt, black pepper, and crushed or ground cayenne peppers. Its a very simple sauce that penetrates the meat nicely for a deep flavor. Piedmont barbecue sauce only varies from East Carolina in that it often includes molasses or Worcestershire sauce and thus clings to the meat more. South Carolina sauce is entirely different, using a mustard base instead, producing a much tangier and sharp flavor.
Then there is Memphis or Southern style barbecue sauce. This popular variety is typically more complicated (flavor-wise) and is built around mustard, tomato, and vinegar. Fans often point to the boldness of these flavor combinations as the hallmark of Memphis barbecue sauce. A saying often heard among hungry connoisseurs is no two bites alike.
Continuing our trek westward, we come to the acknowledged center of the barbecue universe Kansas City! Kansas City barbecue sauce is distinguished by its noticeably thicker consistency and emphasis on sweetness. Thats because this style of sauce is built upon thick tomato sauce, chunks of vegetables, and lots of sugar. Many popular commercial brands are based on this Kansas City recipe. Its most popular among amateur backyard grillers because of the availability in grocery stores (Kraft, Heinz, K.C.s Masterpiece, etc.). And also because the thick sauce can be applied only once and enough will remain in place to please the happy recipients of the grilled meat.
Finally, there are the Texas barbecue sauce styles. Now, Texas is one big state, and there are several regional varieties within it. The most common include thick and spicy sauces that are essentially spicier variations on the Kansas City sauces. These are found mostly in the north and east sections of the state (Dallas). In western Texas, thinner sauces that feature hot peppers can be found. These sauces are often added only at the very end of the barbecuing or grilling process. And then, in southern Texas, the barbecue sauce of choice features an emphasis on Mexican spices and, of course, jalapeno peppers! Make sure to have a cold beverage handy to put out the fire!
Owen Miller is the town expert on barbecuing and on barbecue sauces to make you drool. To get the information you need to be the top barbecue sauce guru in your town, check out Owen's bbq sauce resource center at http://www.bbqsaucezone.com.
Have you been talking to my wife? Or is this a hint you would like to book a room?
venison mmmmmmmmmm, BBQ venison MMMMMMMMMMMMM, SMOKED BBQ'D VENISON IZ GRREAT!
Yeah, I have it bookmarked.
Now, Tork, I do recall the warning; because I did start on the dry rub, certainly off some sage advice from you and others on the threads. My own concoction, varying by what's on hand and what I think might taste good.
However, I will still have a bit of my very own Appalachian Ambrosia on the side for dipping when I want to.
Yes, it's tomato. I started out trying to duplicate Ridgewood's, but have evolved it away from the sweet side and more toward tangy - not peppery. A taste of vinegar helps. But, vinegar is for collards, mustard greens, etc. With cornbread; and anyone who puts sugar in cornbread needs professional help.
You've got that right. I go there every now and then to get my fix. Their smoked sausages are something to die for. I found out about Payne's 30 years ago. The quality hasn't changed. Who knew perfection could be so boring. I work in downtown Memphis and it's worth the trip for a great lunch. BTW, the matriarch of Payne's died a few months ago. She made it what it is today. Great work.
IMO, if the meat is prepared well enough it doesn't need any sauce.
Come to Memphis in May, my friend. Tom Lee Park on Riverside Drive is awash with the aromatic scents of bbq. The Memphis in May International Barbecue Contest will put your sense of smell into sensory overload. YUM, YUM!!!!!
And no doubt that too would give them a better flavor than smearing them with that Carolina abomination.
Ping for later. Sometimes I really hate Seattle.
I've mentioned him before :), along with a few others.
And this timely thread gives me occasion to mention another:
Farm Boy's in Chapin, SC. They are only open(for now) Thursday through Saturday(I think).
I absolutely must give this place props for the best mustard BBQ I have had in many years. The best, in fact, that I have ever gotten from a restaurant.
Pros: Mustard AND vinegar-pepper styles. They also have both creamy and pickle slaw(marinated, no mayo). Assorted BBQ-appropriate sides. Desserts. All you can eat for about $8, tea included.
Cons: the hush-puppies are weak. Also, I'm told that sometimes they get a little happy with the pepper in the vinegar-pepper stuff, though I'm focused on the mustard-based, which is definitely top shelf.
I'm not sure if the yankee waitress is a pro or a con. Inappropriate, but I like her(I know her from when she worked at Hardee's), and there's something positive about the cross-cultural thing going on there.
I haven't been on a Thursday, but I understand that Thursday is pork chop day,and that the chops are very good.
I saw, by the Chapin exit from I-26, that a sizeable commercial building under construction has a sign that says "Future home of Farm Boy's," and more power to them. I hope they expand their hours when they get out of the little hole-in-the-wall they're in now.
If you're in the area, try it. If not, it's worth the drive for a BBQ afficanado. Honestly, what I had was way better than even Mourice's. If they sold that stuff in the store, they'd make a mint, worldwide. "Highly recommeded!"
Lint tastes good with the right BBQ sauce..
LOL! I've tried about all of them, even grew up in the Western part of the state (tomato based). But I didn't realize what BBQ was until I moved to the Eastern side. Although I can eat the mustard based from SC if necessary.
Is that ol' boy in Columbia still open? Maurices I believe it was. That was some decent BBQ
Okay. Here's the only hot sauce I have cautioned people away from. Some sauces I recommend, some sauces I don't. This sauce I warn against much in the same way I warn against wrestling alligators. This sauce will not only make your meat sprout legs and run away, it will also dissolve your driveway, kill hundred year old oak trees, eat through the refrigerator door and kill all gnats within one square mile. It has the added danger of being spilled in the house. In such case it will create a China Syndrome. But nuclear waste is limeade next to this stuff. My wife didn't know what it was and dripped a normal amount in a bowl of brunswick stew. In the dead of night we had to take the stew two miles away and find a dumpster. Had we done it in the daytime the trail of dead insects would have given us away.:
Yes, he has liitle fast-food BBQ restaurants all over the place. But, his sauce is no longer sold in grocery stores.
Here you go:
Yes, I'm aroused too!
Alton Brown came on at 7PM with a rerun of his Trailer Trash home made cooker made from a couple of terra-cotta pots, a electric hot plate, a metal pan for wood chips and grate to set the meat on. He brined the Poke and then used a DRY RUB.
All I could do was smile...
I have to nominate my two favorite sauces for consideration. The first is Bone Suckin' Sauce (thick hot variety) from NC. It is a sweet, hot sauce that tastes so good, no actual meat is required. Just dip your finger in it and suck it off, lather, rinse, repeat.
Also offered for nomination is a local sauce, Hot Chix BBQ sauce from Ellijay, GA. It is a black tangy sauce that absolutely shines for redneck delicacies such as Chorniy Meatballs, you'll note the searing fumes as it reduces and the delightful, complex kick as it coats the lamest of meats in a breastplate of kick f'ing a.