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Saturday, June 17, 2017

Sweet Tasting No-sugar and Low-sugar Virginia-style Barbecue Sauces

No-sugar Shack Sauce, Low-sugar NOVA Sauce, Low-sugar Central-VA Sauce
At around the turn of the 20th century, sugar prices were affordable and manufacturers figured out that the sweet stuff makes just about everything taste better. Though controversial among barbecue purists in those days, increasing amounts of sugar were beginning to be added to barbecue sauces. 

Nowadays, the most popular commercial barbecue sauces are extremely sweet often including high fructose corn syrup, honey, brown sugar and molasses. Many people have developed a taste for sweet barbecue sauces but due to dietary changes for losing weight or other health reasons, they have had to give them up. If you are one of those people, here are some suggestions for sweet barbecue sauce recipes that you might find suitable. One of these Virginia-style barbecue sauces is tangy rather than sweet and contains no sugar or sweeteners. The other two sauces are sweet, low-sugar or no-sugar variations of Virginia-style sauces.

The first sauce is my extremely popular Shackleford Pounds barbecue sauce, or "Shack sauce" for short. This barbecue sauce was inspired by a 19th-century Virginia barbecue cook named Shackleford Pounds who lived in Pittsylvania, Virginia. You can read about his amazing story in my book Virginia Barbecue: A History. It is in the southside Virginia-style of sauce and contains no sugar whatsoever. You can find the recipe by clicking here.

The second sauce is of the the Northern Virginia-style. It is a low-sugar alternative to the sweeter sauces found in that region of Virginia that also contain fruit.

Low-sugar NOVA Barbecue Sauce

1/2 Cup Shack Sauce
1/2 Cup Low Sugar Ketchup
3 Tablespoons No Sugar Added Peach or Apple Jelly
Splash of Worcestershire Sauce
Juice of 1/2 a Lemon
Stevia to taste (optional)

Add all ingredients to a saucepan except the lemon juice. Whisk while heating over low heat. Do not boil. Heat the sauce while whisking it long enough for the jelly to melt. When the jelly has melted into the sauce, remove from the heat. Add the lemon juice and mix well. If you use artificial sweeteners, optionally you can add Stevia (or your favorite artificial sweetener) to taste.

The third sauce is a low-sugar sauce similar to what you will find in central Virginia.

Low-sugar Central Virginia Barbecue Sauce

1/2 Cup Shack Sauce
1/2 Cup Walden Farms Balsamic Vinaigrette
1/4 Cup Low-sugar or No-sugar Ketchup (optional)
3 Tablespoons of Worcestershire Sauce
Juice of 1/2 a Lemon
Stevia to taste

Mix all ingredients well. Add Stevia (or your favorite artificial sweetener) to taste.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

King's Barbecue in Petersburg, Virginia: 70 years of Virginia-Style BBQ

King's Barbecue in Petersburg, Virginia, is celebrating 70 years of Virginia-style barbecue excellence. Read more at WRIC's website here.

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Virginia Barbecue and the Big Green Egg - Match Made in Heaven

You can cook some mighty fine Virginia-style barbecue on a Big Green Egg. If you need recipes, browse the archives and pick up a copy of the book Virginia Barbecue: A History available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble and local booksellers.