For many years my go-to barbecue sauce was the Original Mad Dog made by Ashley Foods. I loved it because it didn’t have the tons of sugar/corn syrup that most such products contain, and it was made with very few, simple ingredients. It also had a good balance of spice/sweet/acid tastes. Sadly, they’ve discontinued this product and after a year of searching for a replacement (don’t send me suggestions – I’ve tried them all) I knew that I had to make my own. Recipe below.
2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
1 Large red onion, diced
4 to 6 cloves of garlic, peeled and minced or put through a garlic press
1 6oz can tomato paste
6 oz of warm water (use the can to measure – that also gets the last bit of paste out)
1/2 cup red wine vinegar
2 Tablespoons real maple syrup
3 Tablespoons unsulfured molasses
2 teaspoons smoked paprika (Smoked Spanish style is essential – I love this one: Smoked Spanish Paprika by Penzeys Spices 1.2 oz 1/4 cup bag)
1/2 teaspoon ground chipotle pepper (again, Penzeys is my favorite: Smoked Spanish Paprika by Penzeys Spices 1.2 oz 1/4 cup bag) If you like your sauce really spicy, use a full teaspoon. Use chipotle, not cayenne pepper, because it has the smoky flavor.
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
To make the sauce:
Chop the onion and sauté it in the olive oil over medium heat until it starts to turn golden. Add the garlic, stir briefly, then add the rest of the ingredients. Turn the burner down to low and cover the pot. Cook the sauce for 30 or 40 minutes at very low heat, keeping the pot covered.
At this point taste and if you want it spicier add more chipotle pepper or if you grow hot peppers mince one and add it to the onions after they finish browning. You could also add salt to taste.
Freeze or use within a couple of weeks.
Pork Tenderloin With Barbecue Sauce
I used to use Mad Dog Barbecue Sauce for slow-cooking pork tenderloin, but now I’m using my homemade recipe. Here’s an easy recipe for pork tenderloin. It makes a lower-fat version of pulled pork, btw.
Place the tenderloin in a heavy casserole pan that has about a tablespoon of olive oil in the bottom. Pour over two cups of barbecue sauce. Add 1/2 cup red wine and cover the pot. Place in a 250 degree oven for four hours. You can also put it in a slow-cooker. Top with more barbecue sauce before serving.