~ Totally Undeserving of the James Beard Award

~ Completely Undeserving of the James Beard Award ~

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Aunt Bethany: Is this the airport, Clark?

Clark: ...Nobody's walking out on this fun, old-fashioned family Christmas. No, no. We're all in this together. This is a full-blown, four-alarm holiday emergency here. We're gonna press on, and we're gonna have the hap, hap, happiest Christmas since Bing Crosby tap-danced with Danny f#%$&@# Kaye. 

Yep…all in this together…and speaking of together…I have assembled together…some of my favorite sauces...

Up first is the worlds most difficult culinary word to pronounce…Worcestershire (wuus-te-shire). As Chef Greg Atkinson put it, this classic sauce is: “… tangy, sweet, fruity, spicy saltiness, Worcestershire sauce is unique among condiments. It also stands alone in its almost universal appeal - it has been popular around the world for well over a century. Some 25 million bottles a year roll off the assembly line in Worcester, England…”. I am sure everyone out there in blogland has a bottle of it in their pantry. Our bottle happens to be the low-salt version.

According to Wikipedia, it’s made from various ingredients such as malt vinegar (from barley), spirit vinegar, molasses, sugar, salt, anchovies, tamarind extract, onions, garlic, cloves, soy sauce, lemons, pickles and peppers. When Messrs John Wheeley Lea and William Perris (both are what we would label pharmacists today) first concocted the stuff, which was so strong, it was deemed inedible so they moved the keg to a storeroom to be forgotten for a few years. After fermenting they discovered it mellowed with age (like a lot if us). They began commercial production in 1837, apparently from a recipe they received from someone who obtained it in India.

Clark: Can I refill your eggnog for you? Get you something to eat? Drive you out to the middle of nowhere and leave you for dead?

Well, if Clark was getting Eddie something to eat, I bet he would use Pickapeppa sauce! Their web page states: Pickapeppa Sauce is created using a unique blend of tomatoes, onions, sugar, cane vinegar, mangoes, raisins, tamarinds, peppers and spices. Quite similar to Worcestershire sauce in my mind but a bit more intense, spicier and thicker…see?…just the same!

Ellen: Clark, Audrey's frozen from the waist down.
Clark: That's all part of the experience, honey.

Talk about an experience! When you are famished from stringing all those Christmas lights, a good old BBQ would sure taste good. Next is our favorite non-home made BBQ sauce we've experienced from Pendleton, which includes whiskey of the same name. One main reason I like it (other than it tastes good) as it is made from common, easily pronounced ingredients. In fact, if you were to make a home made BBQ sauce, you would probably use these same ingredients.

Eddie: You surprised to see us, Clark?
Clark: Oh, Eddie... If I woke up tomorrow with my head sewn to the carpet, I wouldn't be more surprised than I am now.

…And I am sure you are not surprised like Clark was when you see this next sauce…Frank's Hot Sauce. That ubiquitous hot sauce obviously for hot wings but equally good to spice up fries, eggs, what have you.

Bethany: Is your house on fire, Clark?
Clark: No, Aunt Bethany, those are the Christmas lights.

And your mouth will not be on fire with this taco sauce. I just has that perfect old-school taco flavor. A favorite of Mr. Blogger Man's son.

Aunt Bethany: Grace? She passed away thirty years ago.

This is a graceful addition to anyone's pantry. Think of it as Chinese BBQ sauce…thick and a little sweet. Note!…watch it if you are going to also use soy sauce with it as it can quickly become too salty.

Bethany: Don't throw me down, Clark.
Clark: I'll try not to, Aunt Bethany...

This will easily with a throw-down contest for an authentic Jamaican jerk sauce. A very spicy blend including scallions, scotch bonnet peppers allspice and nutmeg. 
Use carefully…it really is hot but oh so tasty. 

Clark: The most enduring traditions of the season are best enjoyed in the warm embrace of kith and kin. Thith tree is a thymbol of the thspirit of the Griswold family Chrithmath.

I bet your kith and kin have traditionally use good old Sriracha sauce with the famous green top and rooster on the label. Not an import from Asia, but a fully American made sauce from So Cal but does has it's influences from Thailand. 
A recent article on NPR reminds us of the recent upheaval and scare of the factory being shut down because the factory's neighbors complained about the smell…geez! And now a documentary is out about it. According to the article, the company's revenue grows 20 percent…each year…with zero  advertising.

Russ: Dad.
Clark: Yeah.
Russ: This box is meowing.
Clark: She wrapped up her damn cat.

So, to wrap up…I end with a sauce I blogged about earlier. It's from a recipe I got from a co-worker who replicated it from memory of his grandfather's Carolina tangy-vinegary-spicy BBQ sauce. It's got white vinegar, ketchup, pepper flakes, Tabasco, onion and garlic powder. Great on pulled pork, fries, burgers...your shoe.

Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night!