Friday, May 18, 2007

Friday Night Videos

Mmmmmmmmm… sausages?

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Guest Post: Charity BBQ

I've been waffling back and forth about allowing guest posts on this here Bar-B-Log. Most folks seem to have strong opinions regarding BBQ, and I'm here to spout my own ideology and document my own personal barbecue journey. I don't want to muddy the waters or set a bad precedent. That being said, I'm posting this for the following reasons: 1) The guest is my wife. 2) The photo is excellent. 3) The guest is my wife.

from Moxie Dynamite

One thing that is great about living in Memphis is that if all the BBQ joints in town suddenly closed, you could still find decent barbecue pretty much anywhere. You might have to drive down streets you don't normally travel, such as 3rd Street south of downtown, which is where I was driving yesterday when I came across a sign that said "Support the Work of the Lord! Charity Car Wash & BBQ."

When I stopped to take a picture of the sign, the nice man doing the cooking came over to hand me some flyers advertising barbecue plates for $5 and $7, and sandwiches for $3 and $3.50, in addition to rib tips, turkey legs, chicken, hot fried fish and bologna. Not to mention a hand car wash for $8! According to the flyer they would be there through Saturday so I made plans to come back today to get a sandwich and maybe a much-needed car wash.

One of the problems with living in Memphis is you can't always count on a guy you meet on the street to be there with barbecue when he says he will. I went back today ready to put in three orders and equipped with a shiny $20 bill to cover the food and the car, and there was no one there, as if I had imagined the whole thing! Luckily I at least took a picture of the sign. Since I had promised my friends barbecue, I drove to Tops and got us all some sandwiches that were so delicious they were worth the trouble.

Friday, May 11, 2007

Friday Night Videos

What goes great with BBQ? Did you say french fries? Did you say potato salad? Well, do I have a deal for you! Tater Mitts! Order yours today.

Monday, May 07, 2007

Say It Ain't So

Smokey Bones is shutting down. A lousy chain barbecue restaurant closing up shop in Memphis isn't particularly surprising. However, they had few non-BBQ items that were OK, and the service was always interesting. One thing is for sure, I am sure as hell gonna miss the bag of donuts. I don't care if I've got The Sugars. If they're still open this week, I'm risking a spike in my glucose.

Update: No more donuts. According to their answering machine, the Memphis location has closed.

Friday, May 04, 2007

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Too Much Information

As part of the continuing series, "Get to Know Your Blogger," I was interviewed Dick Cavett style by überblogger Stacey Greenberg. You can read my hilarious responses at Fertile Ground.

More on the series here and here. And of course, here's a list.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

National BBQ Month

How did I not know that National BBQ Month starts today? And, how did I not know there exists an Official Website of the National Barbecue Association? And, why in the world isn't it based in Memphis? And, is Butch Hofferbert really the "nicest credit card guy on Earth?"

For only $50 a year, I feel almost obligated to join. I missed this year's conference, but I think I might have to check that out in 2008. Who's coming with?

Monday, April 30, 2007

Chatswood BBQ Kitchen

Those Aussies have a strange definition of barbecue joint.

Barbecue Opportunity

Our friends at Mothership BBQ are going through some financial struggles and looking to take on investors. If you were ever interested in owning a piece of a BBQ joint in Nashvegas, now's your chance.

Here's the story.

Friday, April 27, 2007

Friday Night Videos

Homer is always good for a laugh. Homer speaking a foreign language is always good for a bigger laugh.

Monday, April 23, 2007

The Rules

Click over to WhiteTrashBBQ today for Al Roker's 5 Rules of Barbecue. I'm down with all 5.

Friday, April 20, 2007

Friday Night Videos

This clip speaks for itself.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Pick up, Dingy!

OK , it ain't BBQ, but how could I visit Phoenix and not order a big bowl of chili at a diner? OK, I'm technically in Scottsdale not Phoenix. OK, the 5 & Diner isn't much of a diner. It's more like a Steak n Shake. OK! OK! I ordered a cup of chili and some crazy concoction called a Maximillian. I can't find it on their website menu, but it's a tortilla, folded and topped with tomatoes, peppers, hashbrowns and covered with a three egg omelet. It probably has green chiles in it too, but who the hell can tell? I ordered mine con chorizo. Strangely, it doesn't come con queso. But, it was alright, and it gave me an excuse to post a picture of Mel Sharples.

No, E. I did not eat all of that food. I promise. I didn't.

OK, I ate most of it.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Did Someone Forget to Pay the Google Bill?

I have a magnificent bit of writing just waiting to hit the Interweb, but it seems I can't upload pictures right now. I don't think I'm alone there. What's a blog entry without pictures? Words? In the meantime, you can read my guest post on Listwork.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Historic Reata Pass Steakhouse

As mentioned, I am in Scottsdale, Arizona, for a week with two things to do – jack and shit. Tonight I drove myself out to the ass of nowhere for a steak at Reata Pass. It's one of them there famous southwestern cowboy steakhouses. I was prepared for something annoyingly touristy and obnoxious, but it seemed authentic enough. I'm guessing this is one of the places all the others try to imitate. Think Huey's in midtown versus Huey's in any other part of Memphis.

The service was good if a bit no nonsense. I ordered a couple of beef ribs as an appetizer and a sirloin, medium rare, with a side of cowboy beans. Of course, I needed a little Fat Tire to wash it all down – diabetes be damned. The ribs were well-prepared and came slathered in a very sweet BBQ sauce. I've come to the conclusion that barbecued beef ribs are just silly. The bone-to-meat ratio is absurd, and they just don't have enough flavor. My steak was cooked properly, but was a little tough and lacked flavor. I shouldn't judge because I don't normally order sirloin. In fact, that it is normally tough and lacking in flavor could be the very reason.

I do not like cowboy beans.

At this point, I would normally just refrain from giving the place a thumbs up or thumbs down. I didn't care too much for my meal, but I really just ordered the wrong things. However, near the end of my visit, someone cranked up C.W. McCall's epic song Convoy on the jukebox. Yes, they have a jukebox. Yes, Convoy is on the jukebox. Yes, that's enough to make Reata Pass my favorite Arizona restaurant.

Oh, I plum near forgot! I'm pretty sure this guy was sitting at the bar.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Carlsbad Tavern

I am sitting in a hotel room in Scottsdale, Arizona, specifically a Hampton Inn, a little bit buzzed to tell the truth, wondering why I had to travel all this way to order for dinner what was essentially a BBQ quesadilla. The special at Carlsbad Tavern tonight was a quesadilla made from carne adovada – roast pork in red chili sauce with cheese and tortillas. It was quite tasty. Add some slaw and you've really got something. Shouldn't a BBQ quesadilla be a commonplace menu item at most restaurants in my hometown? Is it? Did I just not notice? This seems like an easy money maker. Sorry I didn't bring my camera, but I wasn't expecting the need. Here's Carlsbad Tavern during the day. It's impossible to find at night.

Dinner was good, but a lot of my time was spent listening to a complete tool whose voice carried like a train whistle ramble on and on to his date about how much he worked out, where he worked out, how she looked like his mom, and that his brother was a complete asshole while the poor, poor girl tried to be polite and I tried to reread Bluebeard for the first time since high school. Bastard.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Friday Night Videos

Kurt Vonnegut died. Apparently, everyone on the Interweb was a fan. That's nice. It seems also that everyone with a blog is obligated to eulogize him. I suppose that's nice too. To be fair, I'd like to do the same. I loved the man. In fact, I've spent two days trying to figure out how to draw a connection between one of the greatest writers I'll ever read and the subject of this blog. I suspect that Mr. Vonnegut could have managed, but I can't. I'm not that clever.

So, in celebration of the absurdity of the human condition, here is Paul McCartney making mashed potatoes. It's not BBQ. It has nothing to do with Mr. Vonnegut. I'm not sure it's even cooking. But, it is ridiculous. And, it is funny. In better words, "No damn cat, no damn cradle."

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

$100.00 BBQ

I can't say that I'm surprised these sandwiches aren't a big seller. While I appreciate both the excess and the experimentation, a BBQ pork, smoked foie gras and balsamic vinegar sammich doesn't sound particularly appetizing to me. However, I am 100% behind the choice of beer to wash it down.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

America's Test Kitchen

For those of us who both like to cook and like to believe there is a best way to do everything, the show America's Test Kitchen is great. Every week, they report on items like the best way to cook blueberry muffins or chicken noodle soup, or the best measuring spoons or the best brand of refried beans. Yes, it's geeky, and I'm sure the idea of devoting time to finding the best method for basting a chicken sounds terribly silly to most. I know finding the best way to brush your teeth or fold a towel isn't as important as finding the best way to build a bridge or educate children or extricate ourselves from Iraq. However, I think that if we as a society devoted more time to quality in all things no matter how trivial we might not be mired in the cavalcade of mediocrity that is American Idol, Wal-mart, NASCAR, and our last three presidents.

Wow, how did I rant myself into that corner? Back to the show. This week on ATK, they covered barbecue. Well, sort of. The results were less than appetizing to this Memphis boy, but I think they found the best way to cook ribs in the oven. I have absolutely no idea why anyone would ever want to do this. Although, the method was kind of interesting. They used tea leaves on the bottom of a sheet pan to generate smoke, put the ribs on a rack and wrapped it all in foil. It sure as hell beats the guy on Cookin' in Brooklyn who (no lie) boiled the ribs first. Shudder. And though it's not what I'm aiming for with The Sauce, they also made a 20-minute BBQ sauce of primarily ketchup, mustard and molasses that looked like it might have been good.

The point of all of this rambling is that I'm going to spend some time cooking BBQ sauce recipes other than my own. I'm starting here with the ATK sauce, and then I'll work my way through some of that book I bought not too long ago. Results to follow.

Monday, April 09, 2007

Meat News

The Memphis Business Journal did a blurb about Dixie Meat on Jefferson this week. I wasn't aware that they are open to the public – or maybe I was and just forgot. Have either of the two people reading this ever bought anything there? Worth the trouble? BTW, I love that they have a section of their website titled Meat News.

Friday, April 06, 2007

Friday Night Videos

You drive with it on! Don't forget to tighten the rotation knob.

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Ridin' the Rails

Here's another crazy BBQ contraption because I don't feel like writing.

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Euro BBQ

A tiny, MP3 playing, ridiculously expensive, retro-styled grill named the Memphis Barbecue is the kind of thing that would sell well only among our friends across the pond, but so help me, if I had £230 burning a hole in my pocket, I might just have to buy one.

Friday, March 30, 2007

Friday Night Videos

I guess this fella realized I was working too hard and decided to help me out with today's video post.

Welcome to Memphis
Memphis Street Blues
Thanks, Allen. Welcome to the big M.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007


Tuesday, March 27, 2007

This Just In

Roller derby fan and Interweb bon vivant, DW, alerted me to the Jeppe Utzon BBQ. Couldn't we all use a new $7100 grill that looks like a… well… a $10 card table? Mind altering? Swanky? I think not. {more}

Friday, March 23, 2007

Friday Night Videos

There is no way this place can be any good, but the video inspires me to open up my own BBQ joint. If these tools can do it, this tool certainly can.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

BBQ Puffs

Where do I begin? I may have mentioned my love of takoyaki before. If you've never tried it, do. In Memphis, you can get it as an appetizer at Sekisui Pacific Rim on Poplar. If anyone knows of another option, please speak up, but the folks at Pacific Rim are big supporters of the Memphis Roller Derby so give them a try. They put a special Z-girl sushi roll on the menu in honor of my wife's team, the Legion of Zoom, who happen to have a bout this Saturday night. Get your tickets!

, I'm watching one of my 22 hours of daily TV and run across the best commercial I've seen in a long time – Pancake Puffs! Two thoughts immediately sprang to my mind: 1) I must get up now and order a Pancake Puff Pan, and 2) I wish I was the genius who thought of a way to market takoyaki pans to Americans. "Order today and get an additional Pancake Puff Pan at 25% off the regular price!" Don't mind if I do.

Wikipedia soon informed me that these are actually æbleskiver pans used for making Danish stuffed pancakes. Not much marketing genius there, but of course, I still want to buy a couple. However, I decided that ordering one actual takoyaki pan instead of two Pancake Puff Pans was probably more economical.

Soon, I will be making 15 takoyaki at a time. As a variation, I intend to replace the cubes of boiled octopus with some BBQ pork shoulder and cover the whole mess in The Sauce. Do you think the folks at Memphis in May will appreciate some BBQ Puffs? I suppose I should try to make some Pancake Puffs too. My doctor said those would be good for my diabetes.

The quality of the video on the Pancake Puff website is much better than this, but I love that this goofball picked up his video camera to record the commercial for YouTube:

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Another Nail in Corky's Coffin

A link arrives today courtesy of Brain's Brian which further discredits an establishment often purported to be the best Memphis has to offer in terms of barbecue.

Am I wrong in condemning any BBQ sauce that comes in a packet?

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Neely's Bar-B-Que

Not long ago in response to the naming of Patrick Neely as restaurateur of the year, EC and I visited Neely's West for lunch. I've been a few times over the years and enjoyed the food, but it's not a common hang out. They were packed at lunch time. Service was a bit slow, but friendly and accurate. I ordered a small sandwich and beans. EC had beans, fries and a sandwich sans slaw. I spent the entire meal chastising him for that, so I won't do it here. In fact, I'm not really a fan of their slaw. It's too green. I probably wouldn't put them in my top 5, but we had a good meal. I really liked the beans.

The main impetus for this review is to point out an interesting characteristic of their BBQ sauce. It tastes of prunes. Neely's grocery store sauce was widely panned by the participants of our recent tasting, but the restaurant sauce was much more pleasant. I think that trying to replicate that prune-like flavor for the bottle is what makes the store bought sauce so unpalatable. I don't want The Sauce to taste of prunes, but I now have an idea involving molasses, pomegranates, some string, a two-by-four, and the element of surprise.

BTW, It's very dark in there.

Friday, March 16, 2007

Blasphemy or Genius?

Courtesy of Click (Daily).

Friday Night Videos

Our first Friday Night Montage. This guy's a piece of work.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Bar-B-Palooza 2007 Results

Much like presidenting, maintaining a blog is hard. At least, doing so well is hard. It requires commitment, enthusiasm and sustained interest. As a man who is routinely too distracted to complete more than the first three chapters of any book, I mostly lack those qualities. Therefore, long after the one person who clamored for me to post the data collected at Bar-B-Palooza 2007 has lost interest, here it is:

     {Download Results}

It's a chart that averages all of the ratings given by those who participated in Bar-B-Palooza 2007. The highest scores in each category are marked in green and lowest in red. This was a blind tasting, and in case you're interested, here is the questionnaire we used.

Several things surprised me. Neely's scored lower than even Schnucks Multi-Purpose Meat Sauce, but no one had a bad thing to say about the restaurant. Tops scored low as well, but I was less surprised as the sauce is ridiculously sour and requires both pork and slaw for the full effect. Three Little Pigs and The Sauce tied for sweetness despite the former being almost as tangy as Tops. My entire approach has been to limit sweetness. It looks like I've failed there. The biggest surprise was perhaps that the Commissary scored the highest in overall tastiness. This could be because we tasted the sauces sans pork, bun and slaw which can be a bit jarring.

What did I learn? Not much really. There was nothing scientific or statistically accurate about the event. It was just fun. I did learn that I have way too many friends who like the Bar-B-Q Shop, and several of them don't know the difference between sweet and sour.

Thanks to everyone who participated.

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Ego Alieno

As a kid, I was often distracted and awfully forgetful. In the winter I left my jacket at school almost every day. In the summer, I'd forget to come inside for lunch. I could never answer the question, "Where is your little brother?" I forgot to get my homework. I forgot to do my homework. I forgot to take my homework back to school. And, I still can't find that peanut butter and jelly sandwich?

Things haven't improved as I grow older.

Bar-B-Palooza 2007 occurred two weeks ago Sunday. I've waited too long to write a post detailing the event. I'm not really sure what fun things we did or what witty things were said. I know that Click (Daily) was the most gracious of hosts. I know that we ate some damn fine pork shoulder (thanks RA). I also know that RA couldn't join the party because the baby was sick. RJA was there. (Unfortunately, he reads this blog and invited himself.) We ate more BBQ sauce than really should be eaten. The monkeys ran around like, well, monkeys. Miss M and the dog did not become fast friends. We made a big mess. And as always, E and I were the last to leave.

Here are a few snapshots that I don't remember taking:

Friday, March 09, 2007

Friday Night Videos

Sexy BBQ. Local commercials are the best.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Interweb Randomness

I'm working on the sauce tasting results. I promise. Don't blame me. It's the dyubeetus. In the meantime, here are few bits of food-related news:

Patrick Neely named Restaurateur of the Year. Congrats! Read the article. The Food Network needs a Memphis-style BBQ show. Hope that works out.

Two-faced pig. No, I'm not talking about Rachael Ray. Looks awfully photoshopped to me.

Waste of money? I think I'm ordering one.

Rachael Ray attacked. OK, now I am talking about Rachael Ray. Isaboo? Really? Isaboo?

Friday, March 02, 2007

Friday Night Videos

Super Kung Fu Soccer Barbecue Beer. Hit me!

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Après Moi, le Déluge

My harsh criticism for a certain establishment on Madison is well known, but it's not my fault. The Bar-B-Q Shop continues to suck. On Saturday, I planned to pick up the final sauces needed for our little tasting, but before I could get it in gear, the clouds burst. I thought, "No worries, I'll run out and grab the last minute items tomorrow, at the last minute." No need to mess about in the storm.

It was not my intention to exclude said restaurant from the gathering. In fact, I knew I'd catch a lot a grief if they weren't represented, as a host of Bar-B-Q Shop apologists would be in attendance. Well, the stupid place is closed on Sunday. Tops? Open. Central? Open. Three Little Pigs? Open. Whole Hog Café? Open. Bar-B-Q Shop? Closed. Also, the sauce does not seem to be available at either Schnucks or the Piggly Wiggly. At least, not in midtown. I checked.

I'm working on posting the results of the tasting, but wanted to get that mini-rant out on the Interweb.

Sunday, February 25, 2007


About 10 minutes into cooking last night, I cut my thumb. E finished chopping the vegetables for me, and I managed to finish the ragu and the salsa. However, I wasn't too interested in making sauce. So, I got up this morning and got to work. Unfortunately, this batch sucks. After we get the results from today's tasting, I'll try to figure out what happened. Right now, I'm just pissed.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Salsa Tomate Asado

Ragu Tacchino


A few days ago after lunch, I stopped at Borders for a $2 cup of coffee to take back to work. $85 later, one of the items I left with was a cookbook titled Barbecue! Bible : Sauces, Rubs, and Marinades, Bastes, Butters, and Glazes. I skimmed it briefly today and didn't notice a recipe that cooked for longer than 45 minutes. I think shortening the cooking time for The Sauce is a step in the right direction. We'll find out tonight.

Also on tonight's cooking agenda: roasted tomato salsa, turkey ragu and guacamole. The guacamole has already been made and eaten.

Going Overboard

I just got back from the grocery where I picked up the following sauces: Commissary Mild, Neely's, Rendezvous, Stubb's Original, and the pièce de résistanceSchnuck's Multi-purpose Meat Sauce. Later today I'll stop by Tops, Central and the Three Little Pigs to bring our total to ten for the tasting including mine and RA's. We're gonna have a lot of leftover BBQ sauce.

Friday, February 23, 2007

Bar-B-Palooza 2007

I mentioned spending the upcoming weekend tasting and testing BBQ sauces from around the city, and Click (Daily) has graciously offered to host a gathering at her home on Sunday afternoon to do just that. In an equally gracious move, the Ashley's are bringing a pork shoulder and some of their own private label sauce. Who's bringing the beer?

Here's the plan. I pick up 5-10 sauces including mine and RA's. Each person rates as many of the sauces as they like in categories such as color, overall taste, sweetness, etc. Then they make a sandwich and drink a beer. I'll post the results – of both the testing and the beer drinking. Of course, now I have to come up with some sort of questionnaire for everyone to fill out. So much for doing any real work today. Ah, the things we do for scientific BBQ advancement.

Since I'm mostly looking to determine the balance of flavors in the best sauces and not really trying to identify a "winner," is there any reason to do blind tasting? Also, which ones should we test? Tops, Bar-B-Q Shop, Rendezvous, Neely's, Central, Commissary? Any preferences?

If you haven't already been invited, speak up, and I'll let you know if you are.

Friday Night Videos

As a newly diagnosed diabetic, is this what I'm reduced to?

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Sauce Talk

After a lot of thought and quite a few taste tests of the last several variations of The Sauce, I've decided to alter my fundamental approach to sauce making in two ways.

I've become too preoccupied with sauce viscosity, and I think that's causing me to cook everything too long. The flavor is still good, but wrong. Overcooked is the only word I can think of to describe it. It's not fresh enough.

Also, there are still several flavors that I want to add, but I've run out of spice overhead. For the batch size that I'm making, I'll have to start working in eighths of a teaspoon to avoid over seasoning. That's a pain in the ass. Instead of measuring out each individual spice for each batch, I'm going to turn my mixture into a rub or adobo. Then I can add that mix by tablespoons to the the sauce. Brilliant! (Thanks, Sassy Molassy. Your recent order of Indian spice mixes from inspired this idea.)

Anyway, that's the new plan. Before I get started, I think I'll drive around town picking up sauce samples for a big taste comparison extravaganza. Anybody want to drop by this weekend and offer their opinions?

Friday, February 16, 2007

The Year of the Pig

The Saucier has been diagnosed with The Diabetes – a plague among us pudgy, Southern lovers of barbecue. As you can imagine, I've been a bit uninspired when it comes to writing or even thinking about BBQ sauce for the past week. Have no fear, faithful readers. This just means I'll have to reduce the frequency and quantity of my personal BBQ intake, but I can still cook up all the sauce I want. And, I want to cook up a lot of sauce.

This is after all the Year of the Pig. What? You didn't know? Well, Chinese New Year hits on Sunday the 18th, and 2007 is the Year of the Pig. To be more precise, 4705 is the Year of the Boar. In fact depending on which fortune teller you ask, it's the Year of the Golden Pig which happens only once every 60 years. Parents consider this an extremely lucky time to have a child, and I can't help but think it's an extremely lucky time to birth a new barbecue sauce.

Friday Night Videos

This commercial just freaked me out.

Friday, February 09, 2007

Friday Night Videos

Too much real work has led up to Friday Night Videos with no previous posts for the week. Shameful. Perhaps I can make up for it. It's not National Barbecue Month, but don't you wish it was?

Saturday, February 03, 2007


Ladies and gentlemen, we have tang. I know I promised four iterations of The Sauce by the end of today, but I'm awfully pleased with my latest attempt. This version thickened perfectly, and I'm removing the corn starch option from the recipe. When cooked properly, The Sauce needs no artificial agents. I'm stopping here for the night. Before making another batch, I think I need to get some outside opinions.

I made some big changes this time around including the addition of ketchup and prepared mustard. I've avoided the Heinz until now because I've tasted way too many BBQ sauces that were essentially ketchup, Worcestershire, and not much else. In this case as an additive, I think I may have found what was missing. You'll also notice powdered lemon peel and a touch of cinnamon in the recipe.

Dry Ingredients
3/4 tsp Smoked Paprika
1/4 tsp Chipotle Chili Powder
1/4 tsp Powdered Lemon Peel
1/4 tsp Ground Cloves
1/8 tsp Cinnamon
1/4 tsp Ground Celery Seed
1/2 tsp Cumin
1/4 tsp Onion Powder
1/2 tsp Garlic Powder
1/2 tsp Dry Mustard
1/2 tsp Salt
1/4 tsp Pepper

Wet Ingredients
3 cups Beef Stock
16 oz Tomato Sauce
1/2 cup Ketchup
1/2 cup Apple Cider Vinegar
1/2 cup Red Wine Vinegar
1/2 cup Worcestershire Sauce
1 tbsp Prepared Mustard

1/4 cup Brown Sugar
1 tbsp Honey
2 tbsp Molasses

Simmer tomato sauce about 45 minutes to thicken. Combine the wet ingredients and bring to a boil. Combine the dry ingredients. Add to the wet and simmer 1 hour. Add the finishers approximately 15 minutes before the end of cooking.


Well, that was a bust. I thought I could add some tang with a bit of orange juice. I should have used actual Tang instead. I cut back on the heat by removing the chipotle chili powder. In fact, I reduced the quantities of several of the spices. Mistake. I also added 1/4 tsp of ground cloves. They provided strong smell while cooking, but the flavor seemed to disappear in the final product. I might try allspice instead.

There is really nothing good to say about this batch. Moving on.


As promised, I'm back to The Sauce – one batch down this Saturday morning. I'm not terribly happy with it, but E says it's the best so far. I tacked a half hour on to the cooking time which seemed to thicken things properly without burning. I'm sticking with the current level of heat for now, but I might eliminate the chipotle and go all paprika. The finish still isn't as smooth as I'd like, and there isn't enough tang. Mmmmmmm… astronauts. I'll add still more vinegar this time and perhaps cloves.

Part two on the way.

Friday, February 02, 2007

Friday Night Videos

Keeping with the Aqua Teen Hunger Force theme, here's an episode titled "Global Grilling." It includes both the Char-Nobyl nuclear-powered grill and the original, wooden George Washington grill. Fair warning. It's a cartoon, but it's not for the kiddies. It's kinda gross, too.

Some Common Sense Please

Some days this blog just writes itself. With all the attention being paid to the big Mooninite scare in Boston, this little gem might get overlooked. People, please. When you are standing in the airport security line, keep your mouth shut. Speak only when spoken to. Nothing you say can possibly be funny. Nothing.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Super Sauce

In the hopes of having an edible version of The Sauce available for Super Bowl Sunday, I'm making up for lost time. They call it rapid prototyping – at least 4 experiments by the end of Saturday. It's shameful that I haven't made a batch in over two months. After reviewing my notes, I'll return to tomato sauce and add even more vinegar. I'm adjusting the onion power and introducing celery seed.

Dry Ingredients
3/4 tsp Smoked Paprika
1/4 tsp Chipotle Chili Powder
1/4 tsp Ground Celery Seed
1/4 tsp Onion Powder
1/2 tsp Cumin
1/2 tsp Garlic Powder
1 tsp Dry Mustard
1/2 tsp Salt
1/4 tsp Pepper

Wet Ingredients
3 cups Beef Stock
16 oz Tomato Sauce
1/2 cup Apple Cider Vinegar
1/2 cup Red Wine Vinegar
1/2 cup Worcestershire Sauce

1/4 cup Brown Sugar
1 tbsp Honey
2 tbsp Molasses

Simmer tomato sauce about 45 minutes to thicken. Combine the wet ingredients and bring to a boil. Combine the dry ingredients. Add to the wet and simmer 1 hour. Add the finishers approximately 15 minutes before the end of cooking.

Add 2 spoonfuls of corn starch slurry at the very end to thicken, if needed.