Newest Food Trend: Smoky Flavor! | Print |  E-mail
Thursday, 19 July 2012 15:38

071912fWhether you’re talking about white tablecloth restaurants or roadside BBQ joints, smoke-flavored meats, vegetables, and even desserts (think “Bacon Sundaes” at Burger King) can be found on the menu in abundance these days, according to The Food Channel.

Smoke has become the hot new trend among both home cooks and pro chefs. Fry a strip or two of bacon before any other cooking. Use the rendered fat to cook the rest of the ingredients, then add the bacon — cut into pieces — back in at the end for a subtle smokiness.

Use smoked spices or liquid smoke. Some spices come with their own smoky flavor, like cumin, while others have been smoked before being ground, like smoked paprika.

Or, just serve your meal with one of these smoky BBQ sauces.


2cups tomato sauce or ketchup

1/2 cup apple juice

1/2 cup apple cider vinegar

1/2 cup brown sugar

5 tablespoons butter

3 tablespoons paprika

2 tablespoons chili powder

1 tablespoon chipotle powder (optional)

4 finely chopped garlic cloves

1/2 medium onion, finely chopped

1 teaspoon liquid smoke, or to taste

Salt to taste

Cayenne to taste

Heat the butter in a pot over medium heat for 2-3 minutes. Add the onion and sauté until it begins to brown. Add the garlic and sauté for another 2 minutes.

Pour in the remaining ingredients and stir well to combine. Simmer slowly for at least 30 minutes, and up to 2 hours. Adjust the heat and salt levels with the cayenne and salt right before you plan to use this sauce, which is great on ribs, chicken and pork shoulder.

Makes about 2-1/2 cups, enough for 4 racks of ribs.


1 cup ketchup

2 large cloves garlic, finely chopped

2 tablespoons dark brown sugar

2 tablespoons dark amber maple syrup

2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

1-1⁄2 tablespoons cider vinegar

2 teaspoons smoked paprika

1 teaspoon smoked sweet paprika

1 teaspoon coarse black pepper, or to taste

Add all ingredients to a small saucepan and place over medium heat. When it begins to steam, reduce heat to medium-low and cook for about 20 minutes, or until slightly thickened and flavors are combined. Yields about 1 cup of sauce.


1/3 cup apple cider vinegar

1 cup ketchup

3 tablespoons brown sugar

1 tablespoon yellow mustard

2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

1 teaspoon liquid smoke

Juice of 1 orange

1/2 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon hot sauce

1 teaspoon soy sauce

Combine vinegar, liquid smoke and brown sugar. Stir until sugar is dissolved.

Add and combine the remaining ingredients well and refrigerate. Yields about 1-1/2 cups.


4 tablespoons butter (or olive oil)

1/2 grated onion

1 (15-ounce) can crushed tomatoes

1/2 cup cider vinegar

2 tablespoons brown sugar

1/4 cup molasses

1-4 chipotle chiles in adobo (depending on how hot you want your sauce)

1 teaspoon liquid smoke

1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh sage

Salt to taste

Note: Use gloves, or a plastic bag to protect your hands when handling the hot chiles in adobo. Wash hands thoroughly after handling and avoid touching your face or eyes for several hours.

Heat the butter in a heavy pot over medium-high heat until it froths (or heat vegetable oil until hot), then add the grated onion. Sprinkle a little salt over the onion. Sauté until the onion just begins to color, about 4-5 minutes.

While the onions are cooking, finely chop the chipotle chiles in adobo. They are hot, so start with one chile. You can add as many more as you want later.

Add the chipotle to the onions, then add the tomatoes, vinegar, molasses, sugar, liquid smoke and chopped sage. Stir to combine and let this simmer for 5 minutes. Taste it and add salt and more chipotle if you want.

Simmer the sauce gently, uncovered, for 1 hour. Before serving, taste one more time for salt and chile. Yields 2 cups.



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