Bourbon Barbecue Sauce

Outrageously good homemade barbecue sauce with molasses, chili, onion, lemon juice, tomato sauce, Worcestershire sauce, and bourbon.
Ingredients

Main Course
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil, such as canola or peanut
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1 chopped chile pepper, such as a serrano
  • 1 medium yellow or white onion, grated
  • 1 cup bourbon or Tennessee whiskey
  • 1/2 cup ketchup or tomato sauce
  • 1/2 cup lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/3 cup dark molasses
  • 1/3 cup Worcestershire sauce
  • 2-3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • Salt to taste

Santa Maria Rub (enough for a 4 pound roast)
  • 1 Tbsp Kosher salt
  • 1 Tbsp finely ground black pepper
  • 1 Tbsp garlic powder
  • 1 Tbsp onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1 Tbsp dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dry rosemary (or fresh, finely minced)
  • 1/2 teaspoon dry sage
Directions
  • Heat the butter and oil in a sauce pan over medium-high heat.
  • Grate the onion through the coarse grate of a box grater, or finely mince the onion if you don't have a grater.
  • Add grated onion and chile to the oil/butter combination and cook over medium heat for 3-4 minutes, or until onions turn translucent. You do not want the onions to turn color.
  • Take the pan off the heat and add the bourbon. Return to the stove, turn up the heat to medium-high again and boil down the bourbon for 5 minutes.
  • Add the ketchup, lemon juice, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, molasses, and the sugar. Mix well and return to a simmer.
  • Cook the sauce for a few minutes to combine the flavors and then taste test it. Is it salty enough? (It should be from the Worcestershire sauce). If not, add salt. Is it spicy hot enough? If not, add a little cayenne powder. Is it sweet enough? If not, add some molasses.
  • Let the sauce cook down slowly until it thickens, about 20 minutes. Keep it on low heat while your ribs cook. Alternatively, you can make this sauce ahead of time and reheat it when you cook the meat. It will stay good in the fridge at least a week; I've held mine for two weeks with no problem.

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