The best thick sauces are made with paste tomatoes. You can use a canned tomato puree or "crushed tomatoes". But if you go the from scratch route you must cut tomatoes in half and squeeze or scoop out the seeds and more importantly the soft slimy covering to the seeds. Short of fermentation the seeds and slime bits take forever to break down. The soft stuff around the seeds are what give the bitter acidic tangy flavor to tomatoes so if you want to have sweeter smoother sauce you get rid of that part. It is also the part of the tomato that breaks down protein so expelling it makes your bbq last longer.
For one 4-5 lb chicken (this will make approximately 5 Cups finished sauce) baked and stripped down this is the amount of bbq sauce you'll need for a saucy dish. You can halve this if applying to grilled foods or using as a glaze while baking. I like this with Pici pastas. num
- 4 pounds of Tomatoes or one 28oz can of tomatoes
- 1 giant (and I mean huge) yellow or vidalia onion minced (teeny tiny pieces) - this adds a lot of round and sweet flavor one of the more important ingredients
- 4-6 cloves garlic pressed or minced
- 1/2 Cup olive oil
- 1/2 tsp cayenne (depending on heat-taste)
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 1 tsp paprika as real as you can get not just the stuff that makes things red (smoked paprika makes a unique bbq)
- 1 tsp allspice
- 1/2 tsp cumin (fresh ground is best)
- a handful of fresh oregano
- 1/2 -1 Cup honey, agave, brown sugar or Preserves of your choice (cherry, and raspberry are my personal favorites- apricot is also awesome) I use Bonne Maman or whatever I have been given or have canned myself.
- Sea salt to taste
Simmer minced onion until translucent, add minced garlic and stir well.
Pour tomatoes into onion/garlic mix simmer on low-med (it should not spit and sputter too much that scorches the sauce). Add spices and then herbs, once nearing the end choose one sugar/sweetener. Stir in until well blended wait a few minutes to taste before adding final salt -the flavor builds and you can end up with a salty mess if you salt too quickly. This recipe can be halved easily to be a dip for chicken fingers, fries, sandwiches.
This recipe can be canned or frozen into portions so you don't have to baby a new sauce each time you want some. If canning add 1 tsp of lemon juice to a half pint, 2 tsp to a pint, 2 TBSP to a quart jar. Or just test the ph. I like to just make it easy on myself and add the lemon juice in these increments, it assures there is enough acid to help preserve the sauce.