Don’t knock it until you try it.
“Ricky, I’ve been a bad girl”! Have you ever been somewhere that absolutely has nothing to do with food and suddenly you smell the hickory smokiness of charcoal on the grill and you suddenly remember that winter is over and you immediately get hungry? You know what I am talking about. This happens to everyone who still has all five of their senses. There is something about the smell of smoke from a grill that makes me salivate. I think it’s because the smell stimulates the brain to know that soon you are about eat some really good food! I’m talking food that is going to stick to your bones and make your mouth happy.
When I go to a cookout or decide to BBQ at home I look for a good potato salad, mac-n-cheese, deviled eggs, baked beans, corn on the cob, pasta salad, and some really good meat. Not only am I looking for some well qued and seasoned meat, I am looking for a good BBQ sauce. When I was younger and the men in my family would BBQ and call themselves making BBQ sauce, I would see them take already made BBQ sauce and add beer, seasoning, or an entire onion and call themselves making good BBQ sauce. Now that I am older and much wiser in the BBQ sauce making front I laugh at their efforts because none of them could ever have the balls (yes I went there) or the knowledge to create this Strawberry Honey Chipotle Sauce.
Now before you look at me funny and begin to question my ability here, let me tell that this idea has been attempted. I have heard of this at farmers markets and have seen it a few other places but never tried to create it on my own, until now. This comes from no other recipe. It is completely driven by my taste buds and my taste buds alone. You know something, you can’t really taste the strawberry all that much. I’m lying. You can but it isn’t strong. It works really well together with the heat of the chipotle and the extra sweetness of the honey. The underdog ingredient in this recipe is the liquid smoke. It adds a great hickory and smoky flavor that gives the taste of BBQ. In fact, this is a great sauce to make even if you are baking your ribs or grilling your chicken indoors. If you add this sauce, you will think that your food came from a gas or charcoal grill. I promise. But those ribs you are looking at right there….those are from a grill.
- 1 c. ketchup
- ½ c. honey
- 2 tbsp. strawberry preserves
- 1 chipotle pepper, chopped
- 1 tbsp. chipotle sauce (from the can)
- ½ c. diced strawberries
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 2 tsp. liquid smoke
- 2 tsp. red pepper flakes
- 1 tsp. garlic powder
- 1 tsp. parsley leaves
- 1 tsp. dried basil leaves
- 1 tsp. cayenne pepper
- 1½ tsp. apple cider vinegar
- Combine the ketchup, honey, strawberry preserves, chipotle pepper, and chipotle sauce and stir in a crockpot on high heat.
- Add the rest of the ingredients and stir. Allow the sauce to cook for, at least, 2 hours before apply to meat or serving. Double the recipe for a larger serving if needed. Feel free to increase seasoning if needed.