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All about "BAR B QUE " SAUCE

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I would appreciate knowing all there is to know about BBQ sauce.

What constitutes a great BBQ sauce?
What is the actual purpose for a BBQ sauce?
"Basic requirements for a successful sauce ?
The balance of mixtures in the BBQ sauce
What not to add to your BBQ sauce concoction?
Technically speaking , what actually happens to the meat when BBQ sauce is applied?
How much BBQ sauce should be applied to any one item?
The best application of the BBQ sauce when grilling or baking?
What type of BBQ sauce goes with what?
and anything else you want to add about great BBQ sauce.

THANKS... Let the lesson begin.

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  1. Oh, what a can of worms you've opened! To me, sauce is unnecessary for real barbecue, which I define as pork (butts, shoulders, ribs, or whole hog) cooked low and slow using real wood. Heat can be direct or indirect, depending on the skills of the pitmaster (it's much harder to regulate the fire to the right temperature if you're cooking direct). Rubs are simple...the simpler the better. Good barbecue needs no sauce. YMMV.

    1 Reply
    1. re: ricepad

      I agree that sauce is unnecessary for Q if it's done right. I do however like sauces very much so I do indulge. Very little on my pulled pork. Much more on my ribs, brisket and chicken. None what so ever on turkey.

      When I do a shoulder (whole) I put it on naked. Half way through I flip it (Skin side down) and wrap it (If it's good enough for the fine folks at Jack Daniels, it's good enough for me). After cooking, I drain all the goodness into a measuring cup. I later separate the fat from it for other applications. After "Pulling" I sprinkle bbq seasoning (No sugar or salt in it) on it and then add some of juice back into it. All to taste.
      It's fabulous.

      You can sauce it yourself or not as Mrs. Sippi chooses.

      DT

    2. Unanswerable. Ideas vary from region, and household to household, and from week to week. Of course, you can get numerous blowhard arguments, but it's just a matter of personal taste. So why not try various sauces yourself and see what you like?

      1. Lots of heat
        Very little sweetness
        Plenty of spices
        Little or no vinegar flavor

        As you can tell, I like a more Texas-style BBQ.

        1. I'll answer your question if you can tell me what constitutes pasta sauce.

          DT

          1. What constitutes a great BBQ sauce? Depends on the region

            What is the actual purpose for a BBQ sauce? to compliment the flavors of the meat

            "Basic requirements for a successful sauce ? again depends on where you are

            The balance of mixtures in the BBQ sauce? regional

            What not to add to your BBQ sauce concoction? anything you wouldn't eat on it's own.....it's kind of a trial and error type process when developing a sauce

            Technically speaking , what actually happens to the meat when BBQ sauce is applied? It adds flavor and moisture. Other than being a more "wet" mixture, I've not noticed any type of change to the meat.

            How much BBQ sauce should be applied to any one item? Personal taste, I don't like to add sauce to the meat when serving bbq. I put out squeeze bottles of various sauces and let them choose whether to add or not.

            The best application of the BBQ sauce when grilling or baking? I always add in the last 10 minutes of so of cooking. That gives the sauce a chance to caramelize and stick to the meat better. Any earlier and it has a tendency to burn. With that said, I only do this with chicken or pork chops.......not pulled pork (butts, shoulders, etc).

            What type of BBQ sauce goes with what? personal taste but I like a thicker, rich sauce on chicken. Mine is a ketchup based (starting from tomato sauce is in the works) and has a sweet, sour kind of taste. It's best on chicken or chops, but I like a more thinned down sauce with a bit more vinegar on pulled pork.

            and anything else you want to add about great BBQ sauce. I've tasted and made sauces from various regions of the country. I prefer mine to be a bit on the sweet side but not everyone does. Making a good sauce takes time as well as trial and error. My advice is to read as much as you can on various BBQ sauces, especially recipes. Make a few of them and then decide which one you prefer and concentrate on perfecting that recipe. Then you can move on to others. There is no specific right or wrong in making bbq sauce.

            1 Reply
            1. re: alliedawn_98

              One of these days I'll pay enough attention to a barbecue sauce I'm making to be able to write it down, but so far I haven't managed to do that. I always start with a good bit of ketchup, then add some Pickapeppa sauce, a bit of molasses (the dark, not really sweet kind), and a whole canned chipotle (please note: NOT a "whole can of chipotles!!). I'll usually add some of whatever bottled barbecue sauce has fetched up in the fridge - people tend to bring some over and then leave it behind, for some reason - and thus wind up with maybe 1 1/2 - 2 cups. This goes into the blender with about 1/3 cup of canola oil. If it's short of sharpness I may add some vinegar or lemon juice.

              I will add at this point that what I'm aiming for here is not real barbecue at all, since I haven't the equipment to do that, if you don't count a water-smoker (and I don't). This is for fake barbecue, stuff like ribs or chicken cooked on the grill, or even slow-cooked in the oven. To my way of thinking this is like fresh spinach vs. canned, or slow-cooking vs. quick-cooking grits: two entirely different things, but each good in its own way.