Friday, 17 May 2013

Barbecue chicken

Sorry, no photo for this one. I was too busy eating to get the camera out!

A quick note on barbecue sauce. It's easy, and home-made has considerably less sugar and salt than any of those 'cook-in' sauces you can buy in jars.

Last night we had chicken and chips, but to make things a bit tastier I marinaded the (already cooked) chicken breasts in some homemade barbecue sauce all day before popping them in the oven for around half a hour to warm through.

Start with some tomato puree and oil. They mix together to make a great paste that sticks really well to food. Then you need to remember to add five things:
  • salt
  • sweet
  • heat
  • sourness
  • aroma

Salt's easy. You can, if you like, just add salt. But if you use something like a couple of anchovies, or some Worcester sauce, you get salt plus flavour.

Sweet. Honey, sugar, marmalade, jam. Just stick in a relevant amount. Tablespoon of conserve, just a teaspoon of pure sugar will be enough. Pulped fruit such as plums or apple is also an interesting variation.

Heat. Well. Chilli and ginger are the obvious ones here. But don't forget black pepper.

Sourness. Lemon juice is good. So is some sort of vinegar. Or if you have tamarind that's also very yummy.

Aroma. Well, that's whatever you like. Garlic is essential in my opinion, but if you don't like garlic, don't add it. Any kind of herb or spice that you like will add to the taste.

Last night's mix consisted of tomato puree, olive oil, celery salt, brown sugar, freshly-ground black pepper, dried ginger, garlic powder, balsamic vinegar, and ground cumin.  And very good it was too!  

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