Basic BBQ Sauce

I know there are countless amazing recipes for barbecue sauce out there, and everyone has their own opinion about which is best, but I do think this one is a good place to start.  We found it in our Big Green Egg Cookbook and decided to make it because their baked beans call for 3 cups – and I was definitely making those. Plus, I now trust everything Egg-related. :)

Big Green Egg Basic Barbecue Sauce

Ingredients:

  • 2 (15-ounce) cans tomato sauce
  • 2 cups apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon celery seed
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 chipotle pepper in adobo (we didn’t have this, so I just used 1 tsp ground chipotle chili pepper)

Directions:

  • Place the tomato sauce, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, and brown sugar in a medium saucepan and mix well.

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  • Whisk the salt, pepper, celery seed, cinnamon, paprika, cloves, garlic powder, onion powder, and chipotle together in a small bowl until completely blended.

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  • Add to the saucepan and mix well.  Simmer the sauce over low heat for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until the sauce thickens.  Remove chipotle, if used.
  • You can refrigerate in sealed container for up to 2 weeks.

This sauce was really good, but I think I’ll add more spicy and less tomato sauce next time to help balance out the sweet.  That’s totally personal preference though, so if you like sweet – go big!

Fennel Slaw

We found this recipe for “Fennel Slaw” in our new Big Green Egg Cookbook. It promised crispy deliciousness, so we had to check it out – and I suggest you do, too!  It was a perfect side to accompany our first Green Egg BBQ - definitely crispy and definitely delicious.

Fennel Slaw

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon celery seed
  • kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 cups finely shredded green cabbage
  • 1 cup finely shredded purple cabbage
  • 3/4 cup finely shredded carrots
  • 2 cups shaved fennel
  • 2 tablespoons fennel fronds

Directions:

  • Whisk the mayo, sour cream, vinegar, sugar and celery seed together in a small bowl.  Season with salt and pepper.

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  • Mix the cabbages, carrots, fennel and fennel fronds in a large bowl.

*we only had 1 head of each cabbage, so we obviously had more purple than called for – which made the slaw super purple (but still good!)

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  • Pour the dressing over the slaw and toss until completely blended. Refrigerate until ready to use.

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This slaw was really easy to make, had tons of flavor, and added a crunchy-fabulous contrasting texture to the oh-so-tender pulled pork.

I’m pretty sure if you’re short on time you could also just pick up a few bags of coleslaw equal to 7 cups, add some fennel, and mix in the dressing.  I know it probably wouldn’t taste as fresh, and probably wouldn’t be as crunchy, but it would be a pain in the ass to shred all that cabbage without a food processor (or that’s my opinion, at least).

Either way, it’s going to be good – you can’t go wrong with that dressing.

Happy slaw-making!

Ahhh Days Off

Don’t get me wrong, I like to work, but I LOVE a Monday off.  Thank you Dr. King for being such an awesome leader.

I’ve gotten to do exactly what I wanted to do today. It’s gone something like this…

Slowly enjoyed a cup of coffee – in my p.j.’s – while watching the Today Show’s recap of the Golden Globes.  After downing a couple of cups, I checked email and worked on blog organization, and finally got around to “breakfast.”  I think most might consider this brunch because it was about 10:45 before I actually started sipping.

Breakfast:

Mango Ginger Protein Smoothie

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Ingredients:

  • 2/3 cup frozen mango
  • 4-5 ice cubes
  • 1/4 cup vanilla soy milk (add more if not blending smoothly)
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 scoop vanilla protein powder
  • swirl of agave nectar
  • pinch of xanthan gum (for thickening)

Directions:

  • Throw it all in a magic bullet/blender, blend and enjoy!

After a little cleaning and more blog work, came some exercise starting around 12:30.

Today’s Workout:

5 mile run, Tracy Anderson strength training

This was my first long run through a hilly neighborhood since my half marathon – AH.  I’ve been avoiding running in general, but especially outside in the cold.  It surprised me how good it felt to get my legs going again, and reminded me how much I really do love to run.  It was also a relief to run without a set distance or length of time.  I just ran one of my favorite routes at a comfortable pace and enjoyed my music.  Knowing I had plenty of time left in the day was also huge plus, making me feel calm and not rushed.

After I finished my workout, John and I prepared a couple racks of ribs to throw on the Big Green Egg for dinner!  We’re taking them to my parent’s house tonight so they can evaluate or Egghead skills.

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They have to cook for about 4 hours, and won’t be ready until around 6:30 or 7:00 tonight…

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Once we got those bad boys on the grill, I finally made it to the shower around 3:30ish – yummy – and made lunch around 4.

Lunch:

Random Veggie Medley and Leftover Butternut Squash Soup

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I tried to keep things light and healthy since I’m planning on thoroughly enjoying those ribs tonight…

I’d say I’ve taken full advantage of having the day off today.  Not in a “vacation day” type of way, but in a “do what I want to do all day and still get stuff done” kind of way.  One day, all my days are going to be like this – I just have to figure out what I want to do with my life first…

On another note, we just pulled the ribs off the grill and are about to head down to my rent’s!  I’ll be sure to let y’all know how these ribs turn out.  Happy almost dinner time – tootles!