Monday, May 24, 2010

Homemade Barbecue Sauce

Last week, I made some barbecue chicken breasts in the oven. Grace loves chicken so I like to keep it made and in the fridge for her. It makes it easy for me on nights when she can't eat what we're eating.

We usually use store bought barbecue sauce but we ran out a couple weeks ago. The store was sold out of our favorite brand (Famous Dave's Sweet & Zesty) and I didn't care for the brand that Joe bought instead. It had way too much smoke flavor for my taste. 

I checked out my Better Homes and Gardens New Cook Book (it's seen better days) and found a basic recipe. I was happy that I had all of the ingredients needed. As always, I adapted this recipe to suit our tastes and added or switched some of the ingredients.

Easy Barbecue Sauce


1 C. ketchup
1/4 C. apple cider vinegar
1/2 C. water
1 1/2 T. brown sugar
1 T. Lea & Perrins Worcestershire Sauce
1 T. brown mustard
3 T. finely diced onion
1 T. finely diced celery
1/4 tsp. celery seed
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes
1/4 oz. liquid smoke
several dashes of Tabasco Chipotle Pepper Sauce
ground black pepper to taste


In a small sauce pot, stir together all ingredients. Bring to boil over medium heat, stirring often. After sauce comes to a boil, reduce heat and simmer (uncovered) until sauce is thick, stirring often.

A couple of years ago, I never would have made my own barbecue sauce.  I wouldn't have even thought to do it.  I'm so happy that I made this sauce, it was so easy and so much cheaper than the store bought sauces.   I think we'll be sticking with this sauce for more daily use and save our favorites store bought brand as a treat. 
I'll be linking to the following blogs this week: 

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Easier Grilled Cheese Sandwiches

I've been wanting to post more kitchen tips and other kitchen related topics to this blog but I've been focusing on recipes.  Since I haven't tried any new recipes lately, I thought I'd post this tip for easy grilled cheese sandwiches.

I  hate spreading butter onto bread.  Mainly because I always forget to take the butter out to soften and trying to spread the cold and hard butter on the bread tears the bread.  Sure I could soften it in the microwave, but I usually end up with an entire stick of MELTED butter.

For grilled cheese, I make it the way my Mom always made it for us.   With mayonnaise instead of butter.  It wasn't until I was in my late teens that I realized that most people used butter for their grilled cheese sandwiches. 

You've got to try it!  Instead of spreading butter onto the slices of bread, try some mayo!  I guess the oils in the mayo keeps the bread from sticking to the pan.  It still gets nice and golden brown too, just like a "regular" grilled cheese sandwich.  Joe even thinks that the mayo makes it taste creamier than the traditional way. 

Here's another tip:  For best results, use regular mayonnaise.  Don't use lite mayo or miracle whip.  The grilled cheese tends to stick when using those types. 

********Be sure to check out my other blog for a giveaway to celebrate it's 100th post!********

I'll be linking to:

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Happy Mother's Day!

Happy Mother's Day! 
This photo is from my FIRST Mother's Day.
Grace is so tiny in this picture. 
Just 8 days old. 
I cannot believe that it's been a year already! 

I'm looking forward to a quiet day with my 2 favorite people (and my favorite puppy).  We may possibly run an errand or two, but for the most part, a nice quiet day....we need it!  

My other blog:  Under the Big Oak Tree is getting very close to it's
100th post!  
Soon, I'll be announcing a giveaway to celebrate! 
Check back this week for more details!