On our table: Bluegrass BBQ sauce

Chris Sussman, contributor to this recipe, will be hosting a Big Green Egg Backyard Pitmaster contest at the Bluegrass BBQ FEST from June 7-8. He will be launching Big Green Eggs on Saturday June 8 to demonstrate some of his barbecue recipes and offer tips on becoming a next level pitmaster.

While Kentucky might not have what you would call a ‘signature’ barbecue sauce, we would hang our hats on this naughty recipe any day of the week. This recipe uses a classic basic sauce recipe from our friend Chris Sussman, a Louisville-based barbecue enthusiast known in foodie circles as BBQ Buddha, which is slightly modified to add more of a southern touch. . Evan Williams Bourbon has been added to impart a bold, woody layer, and Dr. Pepper has been folded back for a sweet, cherry tone (and a nod to the tendency to braise or marinate meat in cola) .

Equal parts sweet, tangy, and with just the right amount of spice, this sauce is rich in color and velvety, hugging meat like a lost friend. The recipe is simple to prepare, creating a delicious all-purpose sauce on smoked meat of all kinds.

Bluegrass barbecue sauce:

• 2¾ cups BBQ Buddha BBQ sauce (recipe follows)

• ¾ cup of Dr. Pepper syrup (recipe follows)

• ½ cup of Evan Williams bourbon

• 6 turns of black pepper mill

Dr Pepper Syrup:

• 2 Dr Pepper cups

In a small saucepan, add Dr Pepper. Bring to a boil and reduce heat to simmer. Let reduce for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from fire.

Barbecue Buddha Sauce Ingredients:

• 2 cups of ketchup

• ¼ cup brown sugar

• ¼ cup onion, minced

• 2 tablespoons of olive oil

• 2 tablespoons of water

• 3 garlic cloves, crushed

• 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar

• 1 tablespoon of tomato paste

• 1 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce

• 1 teaspoon of dry mustard

• Fresh ground pepper to taste

Basic sauce method:

Mix the onion and the mashed water. Heat in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add olive oil. Simmer until lightly browned. Add the remaining ingredients. Mix well. Simmer for 20 minutes.

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