I’ve been working on a freelance project pretty much nonstop for June, up until yesterday. Today I am finally free. Though I spent most of my time in the last few weeks on the computer, I tried to avoid doing anything fun there in order to get myself back to work. This made me into a news junky, which, given the news lately, has made me into a cranky old crab.

Anyway. Today was my first day of freedom and it’s not too hot, not too humid–probably because I left the house early enough that these two hadn’t settled in completely. Today I went to city hall and officially dissolved Sweet Pea. It had to happen eventually, and there it is. Nearly all the paperwork for related things like sales tax is completed; it’s pretty much a done deal. This is good, because it’s time to start packing it all in not simply metaphorically, but quite literally. We move in three weeks.

I loathe packing. But that’s something else.

Lately most of my cooking has been limited to things I know I can cook quickly and well, in order to get myself back to work. I’ve also done some recipes from other blogs, but I didn’t want to post them here and seem as though that’s all I do, borrowing from other people.

Among the few things I made that went well and were fairly new was homemade barbecue sauce and pulled chicken. After reading Omnivore’s Dilemma some time ago, I’ve been working on limiting my intake of corn syrup. In addition to that, our bottled sauce was long expired. In any event, I made my own. This is part of a new project of sorts for me–making my own of things I buy and take for granted.

Barbecue Sauce

Now unfortunately, the main ingredient here was ketchup–seeing as we had a full bottle I wasn’t about to make my own, and our full bottle is loaded with high fructose corn syrup. You just can’t escape that stuff. So my bbq sauce does contain plenty, but I have good intentions to someday, when our bottle of Heinz is gone, make my own.

I put about half the bbq sauce yield in my slow cooker with some boneless skinless chicken thighs and turned it to high for a couple hours, as they were still frozen; I then turned it down and let it simmer away. They cooked for probably five or six hours. The last hour, I left the lid off so that the condensation inside would begin to evaporate and thicken. I was rewarded for my efforts–the chicken easily just fell apart as we loaded it onto bread and ate it with some cole slaw. While the slow cooker does generate some heat, it really wasn’t too bad and didn’t make my kitchen terribly hot, especially if I left it on low.

The sauce recipe is from Joy of Cooking. I made a half-batch.
1 1/2 c ketchup
1 c cider or red wine vinegar
1/4 c worcestershire sauce
1 c packed brown sugar
2 T dry mustard
4 T chili powder, or to taste (I use less)
1 t ground ginger
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 T veg oil

Combine in a medium pan over medium heat and stirring often, cook until it comes to a simmer. Simmer 5 minutes. Keeps 2 weeks.

This turned out well…much better than my next project, strawberry jam…


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