Last night I made barbecue. I didn't have time to make a sauce from scratch, so I decided to "hack" a store-bought source and use up a number of almost-empty items in the pantry. The result was pretty tasty and felt almost homemade. Here's the recipe:
• Empty two containers of Kansas City-style -- thick and sweet -- barbecue sauce into a saucepan and turn on the heat to medium. I used Trader Joe's "Natural Barbecue Sauce." • Add a shot glass -- or two -- of scotch, bourbon or other hard liquor of the "brown" sort. I used one of Seagram's and one of Applejack, which had been biding time in our store of supplies since a Thanksgiving dinner back in the early 1990s. • Add a can of tomato sauce. • Add the equivalent of six garlic cloves. I used the Israeli frozen cubes from Trader Joe's. • Add a tablespoon of vinegar. I used apple cider vinegar. • Add two tablespoons of a liquid sweetener, such as molasses or honey. I used this neat product I found at Trader Joe's last night, Blue Agave nectar. • Add a teaspoon of soy sauce. • Add a teaspoon of Tabasco sauce or equivalent. • Add more red chiles to taste. I used this thick Thai-style chile sauce that Trader Joe's is presently selling, which gets its viscosity from tapioca. It worked great, because it didn't need to be reduced. • Add the juice of one lemon. • Slice two or three more lemons so that there are four slices per lemon. Put the slices into the sauce. • Simmer until the liquor has given up its alcohol and the sauce has the density you desire.
The best thing about this sauce is that it really clung to the ____ I was grilling. Maybe the tapioca in the chile sauce helped. But it was like barbecue napalm.