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Jul 24, 2008 10:07 AM

"Pepper Sauce" circa 1950?

I've recently inherited my grandmother's recipe for barbeque sauce, that I would like to reproduce as accurately as possible.

It calls for a bottle of "pepper sauce," which seems to not be a very spicy type of sauce, because it calls for a whole bottle, and also because the recipe later also calls for "hot stuff like tobasco."

I am assuming this recipe might be from around 1950 but maybe earlier. Recipe also calls for "Brer Rabbit cooking molasses," which seems to have been around from the early 1930s and popular through the 50s.

Thanks in advance for the help!

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  1. I don't know what Pepper Sauce is, but Brer Rabbit molasses is still in grocery stores and is my preferred brand. Comes in dark and light. Each has its uses, but I'd guess your recipe means the dark. Could the pepper sauce be Pickapeppa (or something like that) sauce that comes in a bottle in the condiment section of many grocery stores?

    1. Here's a webpage that lists the history of hot sauces in the U.S.

      I wonder if your "pepper sauce" might be a bell pepper sauce? That wouldn't be hot or spicy.

      1. On this link, the bottom left of the triangle is probably what you're looking for.

        1 Reply
        1. re: PapaHarley

          I have a bottle of those small yellow vinegar packed peppers. They are much hotter than tabasco sauce and not quite as hot as habanero peppers.

        2. Hey, thanks for the assistance. This is very interesting.

          1. does your recipe have any vinegar component?

            6 Replies
            1. re: alkapal

              Yes, calls for apple cider vinegar, about the same quantity as the tomato-based ingredients.

              1. re: thebelly

                Yep, pepper sauce to me is the small yellow peppers in vinegar - what you use on greens...

                1. re: thebelly

                  thebelly, IF the "pepper sauce" is the peppers-in-vinegar sauce (like this: ), then that is a lot of vinegar. would you care to share the recipe, proportions, etc.?

                  btw, is your screen name as in...."get in my belly"? ;-) warning: not for the sensitive hounds among us:

                  1. re: alkapal

                    I don't think the pepper-in-vinegar sauce makes sense either.

                    I am thinking the recipe means something like Heinz Chili Sauce?

                    1. re: Chile Pepper

                      That was my first thought, too, Chile Pepper :--)

                      1. re: Chile Pepper

                        That's kind of what I was thinking. My grandma and great grandma have several recipes in their recipe boxes for "chili sauce" and I could easily see, from the ingredients, how one would call that pepper sauce too. Here are a couple of the recipes:

                        Chili Sauce

                        12 large ripe tomatoes
                        4 ripe green peppers
                        2 onions
                        2 T. salt
                        2 T. sugar
                        1 T. cinnamon
                        3 cups vinegar

                        Peel tomatoes and onions and chop separately- very fine. Add chopped green peppers and remaining ingredients. Cook for 2 hours. (May use red food coloring, if desired.) Pour into pint jars and seal.

                        Tomato Chili Sauce

                        2 dozen ripe tomatoes
                        4 onions, peeled and quartered
                        3 green peppers, cored and quartered
                        1 t. cloves
                        1 cup sugar
                        3 cups vinegar
                        2 T. salt
                        1 T. cinnamon
                        ½ t. allspice

                        Dip tomatoes in very hot water and then in cold water; quarter, core, and peel. Grind first three ingredients in a food grinder, and then add remaining ingredients. Cook to desired thickness, stirring frequently. Put in ½ pint jars and seal. Red food coloring is optional.

                        Notes from Grandma:
                        - Cooked 2 ½ hours in August 1965- made 11 ½ pints
                        - Cooked 2 ½ hours in September 1968- made 9 ½ pints
                        - Cooked 3 ½ hours in August 1973- made 9 ½ pints- used canner and sterilized jars in dishwasher