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.
Lately I've been using a Wasabi-based BBQ sauce to good effect, more to bring out the natural flavor of the meat than to introduce new flavors.
Memphis, Kansas City, Texas. All sauces made in an attempt to recreate the quality of the one true sauce, Eastern NC. Unfortunately they have not even come close
Three parts Rib King Sauce
One part Kraft regular BBQ sauce
One teaspoon of Tiger Sauce
three or four drops of Tabasco Sauce
A shot glass sized slug of beer
Try this out and I doubt you ever want another BBQ sauce ever. It's my (formerly) secret receipe
Can you add anything to this discussion, Ms. Southern chick?
There's a few here.
The Mecca for BBQ is in Lexington, NC. Everything else is a pale substitute. Try eating at either "Lexington BBQ" or "BBQ Center." They are the two best versions of Lexington BBQ. When you order a plate also order a "Cheerwine" to go with it. Another Western Carolina invention. Delicious. Don't forget to finish with a serving of Banana Pudding. Yum.
Apple Cider Vinegar
(don't be sparing with the ingredients.)
Mix it, let it sit for a day, then apply often to pork on the barbeque or smoker. You can make it in a big ole jar and poke holes in the top to create a shaker. It's ready to eat as is, but for sandwiches, I'll make a sweeter sauce to drizzle on top after the pork's on a bun. Made it last Sunday - the dog gets excited when she hears charcoal going into the smoker pan.
Yeah right. Try Hog Heaven in Little Washington or Parkers in Wilson. Even Stamey's in Greensboro is better that anything in Lexington.
Yo - AppyPappy, not to get too personal, but eastern NC BBQ is not as good as wester NC BBQ. I will admit I prefer the way easterners prepare their cole slaw.
Any input here?
Specially ironic, from an article originating in --- India!
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