Smoked beer barbecue sauce
Prep time: 10 minutes plus cooling time
Cook time: 25 minutes
Makes about 1 1/4 cups
If you crave the flavor of smoked foods but it's too cold or wet to mess with the grill, add this barbecue sauce to meats. It uses smoked beer for a facsimile of the outdoors taste you yearn for. It won't replace the real thing, but it might tide you over until the weather is more conducive to grilling. Pass this at the table to accompany meats, or use as an ingredient in food such as pulled chicken or pulled pork.
Make ahead: The sauce can be stored in a covered container and refrigerated for up to a week.
Recipe adapted from "Raichlen on Ribs, Ribs, Outrageous Ribs" by Steve Raichlen (Workman, 2006).
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 medium onion, finely chopped (about 1 cup)
1 clove garlic, minced
1 cup smoked beer
1/4 cup ketchup
1/4 cup molasses
1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
3 tablespoons Dijon-style mustard
2 tablespoons brown sugar (or more to taste)
1 teaspoon red wine vinegar or white vinegar
Coarse kosher or sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper
Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and cook for 2 minutes, then add the garlic and cook until the onion has softened, 4 to 6 minutes. Reduce the heat if the vegetables begin to brown too much.
Add the beer and bring to a boil; cook until it has reduced to about 1/2 cup. Add the ketchup, molasses, Worcestershire sauce, mustard, brown sugar and vinegar. Cook, with the sauce barely bubbling around the edges, until it is thick and richly flavored, 6 to 10 minutes, stirring often with a wooden spoon.
Taste, and add salt, pepper and additional brown sugar if needed; the sauce should be highly seasoned. Let cool to room temperature before serving.
The cooled sauce can be covered and refrigerated for up to a week; allow it to return to room temperature before using.
Per tablespoon: 50 calories, 0 g protein, 8 g carbohydrates, 2 g fat, 1 g saturated fat, 0 mg cholesterol, 115 mg sodium, 0 g dietary fiber, 5 g sugar