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APPLE CITY BARBECUE SAUCE

Peace, Love, & Barbecue:
Recipes, Secrets, Tall Tales, and Outright Lies from the Legends of Barbecue

by Mike Mills, Amy Mills Tunnicliffe

THE GOSPEL ON SAUCE
When I bought 17th Street Bar & Grill in 1985, Mama Faye was 82 years old and in excellent health. For several years, she made gallons of our family's barbecue sauce each week, but once the place got going, the amount I needed for the restaurant and for competition quickly got to be overwhelming. I had to cook hundreds of batches myself.
     To Mama Faye's dismay, I did alter our recipe ever so slightly. I only added some apple juice and a few different spices, but she never let me forget it. "This isn't the original sauce," she'd tell anyone who'd listen. "Mike veered off the recipe."
     She was awfully proud, however, when the sauce won the Grand Sauce Award at the Jack Daniel's World Championship International Barbecue Cook-Off in 1992.

APPLE CITY BARBECUE SAUCE

Makes 3 cups
This award-winning sauce enhances just about any barbecue. Some barbecue sauce is very thick and just sits on top of the meat. This sauce is smooth and on the thin side, and it seeps down into the meat.


1 cup ketchup (I use Hunt's)
2/3 cup seasoned rice vinegar 
1/2 cup apple juice or cider
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar 
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup soy sauce or Worcestershire sauce   
2 teaspoons prepared yellow mustard
3/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper
1/4 teaspoon cayenne
1/3 cup bacon bits, ground in a spice grinder
1/3 cup peeled and grated apple
1/3 cup grated onion
2 teaspoons grated green bell pepper


Combine the ketchup, rice vinegar, apple juice or cider, cider vinegar, brown sugar, soy sauce or Worcestershire sauce, mustard, garlic powder, white pepper, cayenne, and bacon bits in a large saucepan.

Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Stir in the apple, onion, and bell pepper. Reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, 10 to 15 minutes or until it thickens slightly. Stir it often.

Allow to cool, then pour into sterilized glass bottles. A glass jar that used to contain mayonnaise or juice works real well. Refrigerate for up to 2 weeks.

VARIATION: To make this sauce a little hotter, add more cayenne pepper to taste, approximately another 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon. Be careful; a little cayenne goes a long way.
 

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