Here are a couple of tips that are so simple that I sometimes take them for granted:
1. To sweeten BBQ sauce – use either honey or maple syrup along with some orange juice for a nice sweet flavor. It never hurts to warm the sauce, so all the flavors will blend. Try experimenting with different types of honey (we like Orange Blossom) and maple syrup to find just the right one for your palette. Start with 1 part honey/maple syrup to 3 parts sauce along with a conservative splash of orange juice.
2. Our oldest marinade is a simple one, but a good one. Mix one cup of red wine vinegar, one cup of soy sauce, and one cup of water. Teriyaki can be substituted for soy for a sweeter taste. This marinade works well on almost everything and, if you want to customize it, add a shot of bourbon to the mix. (For chicken, add a shot of rum.) I decided a long time ago that booze is better to cook with than to drink…for the simple reason that it breaks down the fibers of the meat and is a good tenderizer…so what was it doing to my head??? (Of course, I don’t put wine into the ‘booze’ category, yet it is also a great marinade…white wine for chicken and red wine for beef.)