My grandfather, Papa, used to make the best homemade barbecue sauce. We grew up in Georgia and I just loved the hot and spicy sauce he made. It had a tang of vinegar that I found irresistible. I regretted that I never got that recipe from him. As I lived and traveled throughout the South, I was never able to find a sauce that tasted the same as his. From Kentucky, to Tennessee, to Mississippi, I had some mighty fine sauces, but none that had the flavor I craved.
Recently, I moved to North Carolina. One afternoon, I was outside and smelled the smell of my Grandfathers’ barbecue sauce. I followed my nose to a neighbor’s house. I introduced myself and told my neighbor, Fred, that the scent of his sauce was making my mouth water. He was kind enough to share his recipe with me and told me that I could share it with my readers, he also informed me that the vinegar based sauces are called “Carolina Sauces”. Whatever the name, I am glad to have this flavor back. I love it on chicken and beef and pork. One tip, be sure to make this a few days in advance. Cover and refrigerate and then slow simmer prior to serving.
This sauce is best used as a mop and then served on the side. This is not a traditional thick sauce. This sauce is thin and is meant to be so.
1 cup white vinegar
1 cup cider vinegar
1 tablespoon light brown sugar
1/2 tablespoon cayenne pepper
2 tablespoons Texas Pete or to taste
1 teaspoon kosher salt
2 teaspoons ground black pepper
1. Combine ingredients in small saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat on the stove.
2. Remove from heat, let cool and place in covered dish. Place in refrigerator and let sit overnight, allowing the flavors to marry.
3. Prior to serving, place back on stove and bring to a simmer.
4. Use as a mop or serve on the side.
Sources: This recipe comes from the authors own recipe files and from her neighbor Fred.