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Q-talk *ON TOPIC ONLY* QUALITY ON TOPIC discussion of Backyard BBQ, grilling, Equipment and just outdoor cookin' in general, hints, tips, tricks & techniques, success, failures... but stay on topic. And watch for that hijacking.


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Unread 12-31-2012, 03:26 PM   #1
krshome
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Default Virginia BBQ sauce ??????

OK I keep seeing that BBQ started here in VA but what style of sauce was used? Are there any good recipes for one?
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Unread 12-31-2012, 03:52 PM   #2
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As far as I have ever been able to find it was mostly vinegar salt molasses and pepper similar to a E.NC style sauce Ole Boshizzle will probably chime in on this I'd like to here his take on it too.
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Unread 01-01-2013, 07:29 AM   #3
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Boshizzle where are you? We need your take on this! Happy new year everyone
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Unread 01-01-2013, 07:45 AM   #4
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I'm not sure of all the ingredients, but I have heard the locals call it "Virginia Vinegar", and it was good!
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Unread 01-01-2013, 07:52 AM   #5
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This is the vinegar sauce I have been using and I really like it,

2 cups cider vinegar
1 cup ketchup
1/2 cup hot sauce( I have been using med Ortega taco sauce)
2 tablespoons salt
2 tablespoons coarsely ground black pepper
1 tablespoon red pepper flakes
1/2 cup sugar



I am not sure where the recipe comes from, I got it from a co-worker, but I really like it.
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Unread 01-01-2013, 07:57 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cashew View Post
This is the vinegar sauce I have been using and I really like it,

2 cups cider vinegar
1 cup ketchup
1/2 cup hot sauce( I have been using med Ortega taco sauce)
2 tablespoons salt
2 tablespoons coarsely ground black pepper
1 tablespoon red pepper flakes
1/2 cup sugar



I am not sure where the recipe comes from, I got it from a co-worker, but I really like it.
That really looks like a NC style????????
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Unread 01-01-2013, 07:57 AM   #7
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If you go back to the 18th century, with community barbecues, the sauce would be comprised of melted butter, cider vinegar, red and black pepper, and a little Maderia wine.


I think nowadays cashew's sauce is pretty close, although that's too much hot sauce if it's a respectable brand. I would cut down on the sugar in cashew's and add a 1/4 cup of ballpark mustard. Very good


Anything with ketchup is Western NC, or Piedmont style.
Eastern NC is just vinegar and pepper and salt, for the most part

It's a huge divide in the state, which kind of sauce is better.
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Unread 01-01-2013, 08:45 AM   #8
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VA BBQ Sauce? That's tough to identify as existing nowadays. From my travels through the state, the three places with what I would consider to have the closest thing to VA BBQ sauce would be Allman's BBQ in Fredericksburg, Pierce's BBQ Pitt in Williamsburg, and perhaps King's BBQ in Petersburg.

VA BBQ sauce, like everywhere else, was modified and evolved throughout the centuries in a way that reflected the prosperity of the times. Early on back in the 1600's, the English didn't like the gamy flavors of the native game so they began using vinegar based sauces on meat in order to cover up the gaminess.

Native Americans taught the English their ways of smoking meat. When enslaved people from Africa and the West Indies arrived, they refined the cooking process into what we are familiar with nowadays by using a bed of coals with the meat suspended above them.

As prosperity increased, more wealthy people began to use more spices and even sugar when cooking BBQ. Poor people and enslaved people didn't have that luxury and continued to use the vinegar, butter, salt, pepper, cayenne sauce. In fact, that sauce remained as a main component in just about all BBQ cooking by most African Americans and poorer white people until at least around the 1920's. That recipe was passed down from generation to generation and that was just the way you cook BBQ. As enslaved people moved around the colonies because of inheritances, sales, trades, etc., that cooking technique and sauce was spread all over the South.

Also, the only way to get into North Carolina, South Carolina, GA, Kentucky, etc. during colonial times was from either VA or PA using Indian hunting/trading paths that led from PA, through VA all the way down to about Augusta, GA. As settlers in VA set out to find new lands to settle, they took their BBQ with them. Those are some of the reasons that the vinegar, butter, salt, pepper, cayenne sauce is so universal throughout the South.

Here is some further information you may find helpful regarding the sauces and flavors used in VA BBQ -

From the 1600's onward - Butter or lard, vinegar, salt, pepper, cayenne.

Early 19th century - vinegar, mustard, sugar, salt, pepper, butter, mushroom ketchup, garlic, honey, peach syrup, soy, molasses, and starting around the 1830s tomato ketchup.

Late 19th century - Worcestershire, tomato, vinegar, salt, pepper, mustard.

Early to mid 19th century meat flavoring -

2 chopped onions
3 pods of red (cayenne) pepper chopped
2 TBS brown sugar
1 TBS celery seed
1 TBS ground mustard
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp black pepper
1 tsp salt

Add 1 quart of cider vinegar and mix well.

Shack sauce is an old school Virginia sauce inspired by a great Virginia BBQ cook named Shack who lived from around 1840 to about 1920.

1 1/2 cup Apple Cider Vinegar
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup of your favorite hot sauce
1 Tablespoon (TBS) Paprika
1 TBS Black Pepper
1 TBS Kitchen Salt
2 TBS Yellow Mustard (French)

Mix well, let sit for at least 24 to 48 hours before serving for best results. I blend it in my Ninja, that's why it's about 16 ounces total.


So, if you want an authentic VA BBQ sauce nowadays, I'd suggest that you get to work using some of the ingredients I listed above. Of course, just as it always has been, the VA BBQ sauce you create will reflect the prosperity and tastes of our time. But, that's just as much a part of VA BBQ sauce as vinegar is.

Check out Issue 9 of Smoke Signals for more details - http://www.smokesignalsmagazine.com/SSM/Issue9/index
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Unread 01-01-2013, 09:28 AM   #9
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Great post! Thanks for putting it together.

Have a happy and prosperous New Year.
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Unread 01-01-2013, 09:31 AM   #10
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Boshizzle is the man!
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Unread 01-01-2013, 09:34 AM   #11
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I really enjoy your history "lessons" Bo. It's nice to have such a historian in our midst.

Thanks
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Unread 01-01-2013, 09:38 AM   #12
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Thanks Bos good history lesson. And for the other authorities there was no ketchup in early Virginia.
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Unread 01-01-2013, 10:29 AM   #13
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Looks good, Bo. I'll definitely try those out.

If you want a store-bought VA BBQ sauce, this is what I grew up on at backyard pig pickins:



http://www.cfsauer.com/products.asp?id=20

It is a hybrid vinegar/tomato based sauce. It's fairly thin too. I always keep a bottle on hand in my stash of sauces.
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Unread 01-01-2013, 10:41 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brauma View Post
Looks good, Bo. I'll definitely try those out.

If you want a store-bought VA BBQ sauce, this is what I grew up on at backyard pig pickins:



http://www.cfsauer.com/products.asp?id=20

It is a hybrid vinegar/tomato based sauce. It's fairly thin too. I always keep a bottle on hand in my stash of sauces.

Yep, that's good too. It was created in Petersburg, VA, sold to Sauer's and they moved production to SC.

Bill's BBQ in Richmond had a good VA sauce too but after decades in business they closed down last year.
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Unread 01-01-2013, 11:25 AM   #15
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I was heartbroken to hear that Bill's BBQ closed. That place was an institution in Richmond. A pulled pork sandwich and a limeade was hard to beat.
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