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Tis the season…

for barbeque and good ol’ fashion fundraising.

It all started with sneaky hints at the grocery store. You know what I’m talking about. The unique elaborate architecture made out of barbeque sauce bottles in the entrance of the store. The huge pallets of charcoal that kiss the ceiling and dare little kids to climb just that high. The smell of perfectly smoked chicken drifting down the aisles. The subtle yet effective sign to “BE THE GRILLMASTER YOU ALWAYS WANTED TO BE!”

I’m quite the detective, so I used my master Sherlock skills to figure out that summer and grilling season are just around the corner whether I was ready for it or not. Now, we’ve been grilling steak, burgers, and veggies since the first warm weekend in February. By warm, I mean the ice had melted and I could wear my house shoes with only 1 pair of socks.  But now the rest of world has caught up and is joining in and there is even an upcoming holiday to signal the great event. In my mind, Memorial Day is more about recognizing the veterans and current soldiers of our Armed Forces. The signal of summer is a delightful addition to the idea of the all American holiday. It’s a time of family, food, and potato salad. Yes, potato salad needs it’s own category other than “food”. It is just that powerful.

Ribs. That’s all I’m going to say. Ribs.

and homemade sauce.

Curtis Stone, don’t be scared. I promise to share my secret, after all I’m a fan. By fan, I mean I have your poster on my kitchen ceiling. Call me.

ribs3

Let’s start at the beginning.

I wanted my own sauce and I wanted it good for me. I lean towards Memphis style of sauce even though true Memphis barbeque is known to be dry with the sauce on the side “if you REALLY have to have it”. There is a lot of controversy attached to  Memphis on whether or not to sauce or not to sauce, but the true grill masters know that a good sauce is a must for those of us who HAVE to have it. The Memphis crew lean towards a vinegar/tomato base with a touch more tang than sweet. That’s what I was going for.

But of course, I added my own twist.

Chili Coffee Barbeque Sauce

sauce3 sauce

sauce2 ribs

  • tomato puree
  • apple cider vinegar
  • lemon
  • onion
  • garlic
  • honey
  • coffee
  • chipotle pepper in adobo

Throw all the stuff in a pot. Cook for a while. Strain the bits. Pour on protein of choice. I wish I had exact measurements because I would love to re-create this, but I just added and shook and poured and stirred until it tasted good.

Now to the Fundraising.

I’m participating in the Distance for Disaster run to raise money for the Tuscaloosa area Red Cross. All proceeds will stay in the West-Alabama area to continue providing resources for tornado victims through the Red Cross. At this point, family and friends (even virtual friends) have sponsored over $800 for this event!! I cannot express how grateful and humbled I am by their generosity. The run is this Saturday (May 28th) and I’m running the 15K (10.3) miles. I’ll update after I finish.

Bring on the weekend! A good run, good food, trip to MS, and maybe I can sneak in a trip to my favorite Japanese steakhouse. And of course, the official start to summer and grilling season!

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