Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Mommying magic #3: BBQ Sauce...and online recipes

If you are waiting on the edge of your seat to see what the 17 household uses for barbecue sauce are, you are about to be disappointed, because this is just a recipe. But your poor disappointed heart will feel much better when you have an amazing barbecue dinner made from scratch. Delicious scratch.
kinda like this, only more stubble

I really like to make things myself. I love the feeling of making something that I used to think you had to buy, and knowing that I can now have it whenever I want, whether or not I remembered to put it on the grocery list. Freeeeeee! This recipe is one I tweaked from Allrecipes.com(if you haven't discovered this site yet GO NOW), and so far everyone who's tried it has loved it. We had it with chicken the other night and Miles literally licked his plate. We're classy like that.
(adapted from http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Zippy-Barbecue-Sauce/Detail.aspx?event8=1&prop24=SR_Thumb&e11=barbecue%20sauce&e8=Quick%20Search&event10=1&e7=Home%20Page )
1 cup ketchup
1 cup water
4 Tbsp honey 
4 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
2 Tbsp white vinegar
2 Tbsp yellow mustard
2 Tbsp brown sugar
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp hot sauce, like tabasco(I used part of a restaurant packet)
1/2 tsp granulated garlic(I'm sure garlic powder would work)
1/2 tsp black pepper

Put all the ingredients in a saucepan and bring to a full boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Cool overnight if possible so the flavors can blend, and it will also thicken up a little, although never as much as some store bought sauces. YUM!

Now, if you are really wanting a yummy dinner out of this, make a batch of sauce without the water(maybe a half batch, but I like a lot of barbecue sauce), put 3-4 chicken breasts in a casserole dish(I like to cut them into a few pieces so they get more saucy and I'm paranoid about things cooking through) and cover them with generous amounts of the concentrated barbecue sauce. Cover the dish with aluminum foil and bake ~1 hour at 400 degrees. Serve with mashed potatoes and salad, or other good things. Or if you have some buns you could shred the chicken into the sauce when it comes out and make amazing barbecue sandwiches.

the other best tip today: YOU CAN FIND A GOOD ONLINE RECIPE FOR EVERYTHING. Seriously.
...but do yourself a favor and promise to do four things before diving into an online recipe:
1)Read the whole recipe before you choose it, including all the instructions. There may be crazy amounts of time/work required that you aren't ready for, and I guarantee you can find another recipe without whatever it is that you don't like.
2)Always, aalllllllways read the reviews. A whole lot of them. When you start to see a theme, pay attention to that tip
3)Substitute. You usually do NOT need dijon mustard, rice wine vinegar, or cooking sherry. It takes a little experimenting, but really you can get away with substituting a whole lot of things and still get awesome results. And reading the reviews will tell you what you can substitute
4)Skip sponsored recipe sites(...foodnetwork.com, I'm looking at you)! Look for a "real person" kind of site with lots of reviews of people who have actually MADE the recipe instead of comments like, "this looks amazingly delicious!"