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Homemade Barbeque Sauce for Christmas gift

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I was thinking about making some homemade barbeque sauce as a Christmas gift to my brother - he is known to piss me off by smothering even the most carefully marinaded meat in Sweet Baby Ray's. I'd be going for something sweet and tangy, not hot.

Is homemade bbq sauce worth the trouble? Does it keep well? Most recipes I've browsed online start with ketchup... does anyone make it completely from scratch? Any input/words of wisdom/recipes would be very much appreciated!

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  1. I make a couple of batches each year. One batch is about two gallons.

    The biggest hassle is the canning process. I put it up in quart and pint jars and they go through the water-bath method of canning. But then they go right to the shelf and hold beautifully.

    The other upside was that I got to learn about canning AND buy some gadgets.

    Mine is ketchup based and I truly would not be the guy who considers starting with fresh tomatoes (if that's what you mean by "completely from scratch")

    The sauce recipe I use goes well on pork and, in conjunction with a grilled chicken recipe, produces what my neighbors call the best chicken they've ever had.

    This recipe is not hot. Sweet and Tangy.

    Summary: Yes, homemade BBQ sauce is worth the trouble.

    Here's the link and my "batch" is a double recipe: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/em...

    1. The only time I don't make my own barbecue sauce is if I'm in the US and have access to a good local producer's stuff. It's definitely worth making it. As for storage, I do the same thing I do with most all sauces: freeze flat in ziplock freezer bags, having removed the air. With a bit of foresight you can defrost it in the fridge, cut off a corner of the bag, and pour into a bottle to keep in the fridge.

      For sweet and tangy and tomatoey, I'd make it as follows: in a pot with the lid ajar, simmer tomato puree with some onion, garlic, thyme, bay and white wine, for an hour or two. Remove the seasonings, and don't freak out when it smells more like something to go on pasta than the bbq at this point. Add a lot of molasses, mustard powder, a little cumin, a little clove and cinnamon, a lot of ground black pepper, and simmer uncovered. When it's reduced by one-third, add a bunch of cider vinegar and simmer until it's the consistency and tanginess you want. Adjust for salt, sugar and cayenne.

      1 Reply
      1. re: tmso

        BTW, that's a base sauce. You can add all sorts of crazy whatever while you're simmering down: chutney, coca-cola, tamarind, melon, nuts ... look around at people's recipes for ideas. Tamarind and coca-cola are good, though. If you want a smokey flavor, don't add liquid smoke, add smoked ingredients. So bbq your tomatoes and onions over smoking wood chips. Or add chipotles, or something.

      2. Well, at least he goes with Sweet Baby Rays. I make a bbq sauce from the Weber's Big Book of grilling which is our everyday bbq sauce. Its the basic apple cider vinegar, brown sugar, ketchup, mustard etc sauce. I generally only make around 32oz. and I have no problem keeping it well in the fridge. I've also made this one from Tyler Florence which was absolutely awesome and got rave reviews at a bbq over the summer.

        http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/ty...

        1. Here's my favorite homemade BBQ sauce.

          Bulls Eye Original Barbecue Sauce copycat
          http://www.chow.com/recipes/13576

          1. I make my own barbecue sauce all the time, but usually "as needed." I hadn't thought of gibing it as a figt. Good idea! Thanks. I have made it using a ketchup base, a tomato sauce base, and a fresh tomato base. The ketchup always wins hands down;. The other versions were because I was out of ketchup and didn't want to go to the store. OR tear off the corners and squeeze the bushel basket of take-out ketchup packets I have in the cupboard.

            1. Find a recipe that sounds good, or one recommended here. I can't share mine, besides it's not the sweet kind. Don't sweat using ketchup.
              When you think you are done with the basic recipe, adjust to your taste with apple cider vinegar or go sweeter with honey, more molasses or brown sugar. I think you need a dab of heat, and besides using too much mustard or black pepper, I like chipotles or chipotle powder for that. Cayenne if you don't have chipotle. You're a good Sis!