I'm am NOT a sauce-lovin'-kind-of-a-gal. Seriously. If we go to a BBQ joint, I always ask for the sauce on the side. I prefer to have control over the amount of my sauce. I just don't like to have my meat swimming in sauce. Oh, and if I can't get my BBQ sauce on the side, I'll order something else. Like a salad, dressing on the side. And please don't drown my mashed potatoes in gravy. There's nothing like having too much gravy and not enough mashed potatoes. If I wanted potato soup, I would've ordered it. Take-out Chinese food is also something I try to avoid because it is just too slimy with sauce. I mean they take those delicious deep fried chunks of chicken and drench them in sweet-and-sour sauce. So not my thing.
Because of my over-sauced experiences, I have had a hard time with BBQ sauce in general. And you know the bottled kinds almost never do it justice. They're either totally bland, too sweet, or too spicy. But, I am changing my ways. We have a delicious new BBQ restaurant in town. And they have some ah-mazing sauces. That they serve on the side. I don't even have to ask :) They have 6 homemade sauces total and my faves are their Mustard Sauce, Blackberry Bourbon, and Root Beer BBQ. So. Good.
So, this got me to thinking that I could make my own incredibly delicious sauce at home. While I would love to be able to replicate one of my favorites from the restaurant, I decided to start with the basics. You know, get a good base (and understanding) for BBQ sauce. Now, when I made this, it came out pretty tangy and spicy. Until I had Adam slather it on some chicken he was grilling. Something magical happened. The grilling process brought out the sweetness from the honey and brown sugar, something the stove had failed to do. But if you don't like your sauce to be too sweet, don't hesitate to reduce the amount of brown sugar. And if you prefer your sauce to have a bit less spice, reduce the amount of chilli powder.
Classic Barbeque Sauce
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 onion, finely diced
1/2 cup beer, vegetable broth, or water
1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
1/3 cup honey
1 14oz can tomato sauce (I use low sodium)
2 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
3/4 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
3 Tbsp chilli powder
Salt to taste
In a medium saucepan, add garlic, onion, and beer/broth and cook over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium, and cook until onion is translucent. Add in vinegar, honey, tomato sauce, Worcestershire sauce, brown sugar, and chilli powder. Mix well. Cook over medium until sauce has reduced and thickened, approximately 20 minutes. Season with salt to taste.
Source: Elizabeth original, inspired by Brew BQ