With Sweet Dreams and Even Sweeter Days

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Orange Bourbon Barbecue Sauce

In theory, the time between summer and fall has the potential to be one of the most magical times of the year.

The days warm enough to hold all the wonderful outdoor activities that we associate with summer, with the nights and mornings cooling off enough to hint at the weather that's just around the corner.

In practice, it doesn't always go that well.

(Maybe I drank a pumpkin spice latte in 90 degree heat because I was so excited about them coming back, or maybe I got caught in an air-conditioned classroom that was freezing in a summer dress.  Maybe.)

When we can hit the mark between summer and fall just right though, it is one of the most wonderful things imaginable.  And this sauce is there.

With the days cool enough to be able to stand over a simmering pot but with the weather nice enough to still get out there and grill, you basically have no reason not to make this.

This sauce is out of this world.

Think making your own barbecue sauce is obsolete?  It'll take just one taste to change your mind.  All of the normal suspects of homemade barbecue sauce (brown sugar, ketchup, vinegar etc) come together with bourbon and orange to create something that is absolutely out of this world.  The sweetness of the orange juice reminds of the long summer days while the slight spice from the bourbon echoes the colder nights that will be here before we know it.

And it could not be easier.

This would be great with any food associated with regular barbecue sauce.  We enjoyed ours warmed over grilled chicken, but next time you better believe I'll be going at it with some homemade french fries.  Oh yes.

So while maybe I haven't got my wardrobe or coffee choices down pat just yet, this sauce is definitely spot on.

And is one of the best way to savor the last days of summer and welcome in fall.

So so good.


Orange Bourbon Barbecue Sauce
Servings: 2-3 cups

- 3 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 onion (chopped)
- 2 cloves garlic (minced - I used the kind from a squeeze bottle and it worked great)
- 1/2 cup bourbon
- 1/2 cup orange juice
- 1/2 cup cider vinegar
- 1 cup ketchup
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1/4 cup molasses
- 2 Tbsp worcestershire sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon orange zest
- 3/4 tsp ground coriander
- 1 tsp black pepper (ground)
- 1/2 tsp salt

Heat olive in a medium saucepan over medium heat.  Add the onions and sauté until slightly browned and mostly clear (about 5 minutes).  Add garlic and sauté for a minute or so more.  Bring the heat to low and add the bourbon, scraping the pan as you go.  Add the rest of the ingredients.  Bring to a simmer and cook for 35-40 minutes, or until reduced and thickened.  Store mixture in an airtight container.  

Recipe adapted from: Joy the Baker

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