Saturday, February 28, 2009

Best-Selling Snacks for 2008

The following is the list of the top ten best-selling snacks for 2008 at the Carolina Sauce Company online store:

1. The top best-selling snack last year was Buderim Ginger Bears, a grown-up gummy candy from Australia that's made with real ginger

2. In second place for 2008 was another Australian gummy treat, Simply Wicked Fruit & Ginger Bears, made with real ginger and fruit flavors

3. One of my favorite snacks, the crunchy, sweet-salty and mildly spicy Hot Honeys: Honey-Roasted Chipotle Peanuts, finished third on our list of best-selling snacks

4. If you love the tang of North Carolina barbecue sauce, you'll flip over the fourth best-selling snack, Carolina BBQ Peanuts -- and they're currently on sale at the Carolina Sauce Company!

5. The insanely hot & spicy Dave's Insanity Popcorn took fifth place -- be careful with this snack, because it truly is fiery-hot!

6. If the sinus-clearing zing of wasabi is more your taste, then Wasabi Peanuts from The Peanut Roaster in Henderson, NC, is the snack for you

7. Ass Kickin' Jelly Beans look like ordinary jelly beans, but this deceptive candy is actually spiked with habanero heat for a surprise kick a few seconds in!

8. Another of my personal favorites, the aptly named smoked-habanero-seasoned Firehouse Nuts, finished eighth on our list of 2008's best-selling snacks

9. In ninth place was a popular North Carolina peanut snack, Maxwell's Extraordinary Jalapeno Peanuts, with their perky peppery bite and sweet-salty seasoning

10. Completing our list of last year's best-selling snacks was our Peanut Lover's Gift Set, featuring 4 cans of our most popular seasoned peanuts.

Zestfully yours,

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Carolina Sauce Newsletter: Save Money & Eat Well!

Huge Sale AND a Discount Coupon for You!

Save money while eating well when you shop at the Carolina Sauce Company! Everyone's on a budget these days, but you don't need to sacrifice great-tasting food. We have TWO ways you can save big while eating well:

1. Take advantage of our special sale prices on dozens of sauces, seasonings, condiments, and snacks by looking for the red sale prices, or the words "On Sale" when you shop at the Carolina Sauce Company online store. You can also search the Carolina Sauce Company store for the words "on sale" and that will show you a list of all the products currently on sale. But don't delay, as these special sale prices are good only while supplies last!

2. TWO WEEKS ONLY: Order at least $40 in products from Carolina Sauce between now and March 10th, and we'll give you 10% off the product total when you use the coupon code "Blog209" (without the quotation marks). Simply enter the coupon online in the "coupon code" section of the billing page, or mention the coupon when ordering by phone. To help you get started, we recommend our recently updated Ginger Lover's Gift Set and our recently discounted Mango Madness Gift Set, or any of our new steak sauces & pasta sauces, or delectable sweet treats. And yes, you can get 10% off already-discounted sale items in your order of $40 or more, so you save even more money! Just remember to use the coupon code Blog209 between now and March 10th to receive 10% off your order of $40 or more.

Many New Products, Most On Sale!

Our first batch of delicious new products for 2009 has arrived, including brand new steak sauces and sweet stuff, plus exotic Caribbean sauces, tasty NC products, and the world's best apple sauce. Here are all the new products we've added since our last newsletter:

Steak Sauce & Pasta Sauce
*Mama Thomas Pasta Sauce and Mama Thomas Marinara, all-natural spaghetti sauces made in NC, and both are on sale!
*Raisin The Steaks, a mouthwatering steak sauce made with real raisins and tart tamarinds for a savory-sweet flavor sensation - on sale!
*Tortuga Caribbean Steak Sauce, an exotically delicious steak sauce that takes a traditional steak sauce base and enhances it with tropical mangoes and island spices - on sale, and it's low sodium too!
*Susie's Tamarind Tango, a rich spicy table sauce that's great on steaks, burgers, grilled food and more - and it's low sodium, too!

Sweet Stuff
*Mullen's Apple Sauce: Like apple pie without the crust, this all-natural treat is the best-tasting apple sauce we've ever tried - and it's on sale!
*Lilly's Gourmet Maple Butter: This old-fashioned sweet treat is amazing on toast, stirred into hot cereal, drizzled over pancakes or ice cream, and it comes with free recipes - on sale!
*Race City Sauce Works The "Revenooers" Smoked Habanero Jam: Smoky & sweet, fiery hot pourable jam from NC that makes a great glaze - on sale!
*Thomas Gourmet Chutneys from North Carolina, all-natural savory-sweet condiments that come in Apple, Green Tomato, Mango, and Peach - and all 4 flavors are on sale!

Hot Sauces
*Mountain Man Fire Roasted Habanero Sauce is smoky, fiery-hot, rich in flavor, and has a great texture - and it's all natural and low carb, too!
*Jump Up & Kiss Me Spicy Passion Fruit Sauce: A burst of tropical fruitiness in a spicy pepper sauce that's all-natural and has no sodium - and it's on sale!
*Dave's Insanity Private Reserve, 2009 Edition: an ultra-hot limited edition collector's item that's hand-signed by Dave himself, and comes in a wooden coffin wrapped in yellow "Caution" tape
*Matouk's Soca Hot Sauce is the newest member of the Matouk's family of hot sauces, and features aged scotch bonnet peppers in a thick mustard base seasoned with West Indian spices and a touch of sugar
*Race City Sauce Works Moonshiners Run Whisky Barrel Hot Sauce is made in NC from locally grown, smoked chile peppers, a secret blend of herbs and spices, and a splash of bourbon - and it's on sale!

BBQ Sauce & Rubs
*Slap Ya Mama Hot Cajun Seasoning: The quintessential spice blend from Louisiana, for making fiery Cajun and Creole dishes
*Big Daddy's Superb Herb Seasoning is a delicious blend of 9 different herbs and spices for seasoning steaks, poultry, fish, veggies, and even mashed potatoes or buttered toast - all natural, made in NC, and on sale!
*D'Vine Foods Muscadine BBQ Sauce: With local muscadine grapes blended into a tomato-vinegar-mustard base, this unique NC barbecue sauce is sweet and tangy, with a touch of spice, and it's on sale!
*Two new varieties of Thomas Sauce, a NC favorite for BBQ: The tomato-rich Thicker Thomas Sauce and the pleasantly peppery Mildly Hot Thomas Sauce

Wing Sauce & Jamaican Jerk
*Race City Sauce Works Bootleggers Bounty Whisky Barrel Wing Sauce: Medium-hot heat in a rich and flavorful buttery base, this finger-lickin' good wing sauce is made in NC, and is on sale!
*Tortuga Jamaican Jerk Sauce: Made in Jamaica using traditional herbs and spices, this sweet & savory, spicy-hot jerk sauce is all natural, and on sale!

Marinades & Grilling Sauce
*Tortuga Mango & Ginger Stir Fry Sauce is a zippy, zesty tropical marinade and stir-fry sauce for seafood, poultry and veggies -- and it's on sale!
*Thomas Marinade is a tenderizing marinade made in NC using an old-fashioned recipe and all-natural ingredients, and is great for steaks, roasts, poultry, game, and more.
*Tortuga Spicy Seafood Grill Sauce: This award-winning spicy marinade and grilling sauce adds authentic island flavor to fish and seafood - and it's on sale!

***Use the Coupon Code Blog209 to get 10% off your order of $40 or more in products, good thru March 10th!!***

~~Send Free Sauce to Our Deployed Troops~~

Operation Sauce Drop is our non-profit program that sends free gift boxes of sauce to US military personnel stationed abroad. We've shipped almost 500 free gift boxes to date, but there are over 300 troops on our list waiting to receive a free box of sauce. It costs around $20 for us to purchase and ship each gift box. The troops really appreciate the free sauce, as you can see from all the thank-you notes to donors and photos they've sent in. Want to send a soldier a taste of home, and bring a smile to his or her face? Then please support Operation Sauce Drop by making a donation, and the Carolina Sauce Company will MATCH your donation so your money will go twice as far. You can also shop to support Operation Sauce Drop, where 100% of the purchase price of the listed products goes straight into Operation Sauce Drop (you get the products you order, and the money helps send free sauce to the troops).

Zestfully yours,

Monday, February 23, 2009

Tortuga Caribbean Steak Sauce

I first had the pleasure of tasting Tortuga Caribbean Steak Sauce last summer, while on our annual summer "retreat" week when we get some R&R while sampling potential new products, whipping up recipes in the kitchen and brainstorming for new "saucy" ideas. I remember my first taste of this tropical, summery take on steak sauce: the usual savory-tart flavors associated with steak sauce, but accented with spicy Caribbean spices and peppers, and brightened with sweet mango and citrus notes. The end result is a combination of flavors to tempt the tongue and complement your steak, in a rich thick base that will cling to the meat.

It took a while, but we finally have Tortuga Caribbean Steak Sauce in stock at the Carolina Sauce Company, and now you, too, can enjoy this exotic but food-friendly steak sauce on all sorts of meat, including steak (of course), hamburgers, roast beef, pork, venison, and other hearty fare. Not just a table sauce, you can use Tortuga Caribbean Steak Sauce as a wet rub to marinade meat, chicken (it's great on dark meat) and game prior to grilling, roasting or broiling. You can also mix it to your meatloaf, sloppy joes, and other ground beef recipes for mouthwatering flavor. You can even use it on scrambled eggs and sausage to add zip, and use it instead of ketchup for a more robust flavor. Tortuga Caribbean Steak Sauce is now on sale at the Carolina Sauce Company online store, so go ahead and order a few bottles today!

Zestfully yours,

Sunday, February 22, 2009

2008's Best-Selling Mustards

Here's the list of the top ten best-selling mustards for 2008 at the Carolina Sauce Company:

1. The best-selling mustard last year was one of my personal favorites, Scorned Woman Mustard, a thick, hot & spicy savory mustard with great texture and flavor

2. In second place was the spicy and sweet Bone Suckin' Mustard, made in North Carolina by the same folks who make Bone Suckin' Sauce -- and it comes with free recipes!

3. Texas Pete Honey Mustard Sauce, which is also made in NC despite the name, finished 3rd, and has a pourable consistency so you can use it as a not-too-sweet and pleasantly piquant salad dressing or dip for pretzels and veggies

4. The award-winning Dave's Hurtin' Habanero & Honey Mustard took 4th place, with fiery-hot habanero heat that's tempered by sweet honey

5. The incendiary Dave's Insanity Mustard, whose name says it all, was the fifth best-selling mustard last year, and yes, it is seriously hot!

6. Another popular NC product, Durn Good Hot & Spicy Mustard, finished in 6th place, and is a devilishly delicious alternative to plain yellow mustard -- and it comes in two convenient sizes

7. Ass Kickin' Mustard, spiked with habanero and horseradish, took 7th on our list of last year's best-selling mustards

8. The Carolina Sauce Company's Mustard Lover's Gift Set, featuring 5 of our most popular mustards at a discounted price, ended up in 8th place

9. One of our newer products, the savory and spicy Trolly Stop Hot Mustard Sauce from Wilmington, NC, finished a very respectable 9th despite having arrived in our warehouse very late in the year. Trolly Stop Hot Mustard is wonderful on hot dogs, burgers, sausages, sandwiches, wraps, and more -- and it's currently on sale at the Carolina Sauce Company online store!

10. Rounding out the list of 2008's best-selling mustards was Burning Asphalt White Wine Dijon Mustard, a mild but full-flavored gourmet mustard that's fabulous for cooking as well as for slathering and dipping.

Zestfully yours,

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Raisin the Steaks Steak Sauce

Raisin the Steaks is a new gourmet steak sauce that you can bet the farm on (even in this economy!). Real raisins play a starring role, adding their natural sweetness and earthy flavor to a traditional steak sauce base of tomato and tamarinds. But don't worry, this steak sauce isn't overly sweet, thanks to the tart tamarinds and also to a touch of citrus. The end result is a well-balanced, robust and rich steak sauce that will enhance, not overshadow, the natural flavors in steaks, hamburgers, and other types of meat. And if you're looking for a steak sauce without anchovies (a common ingredient in worcestershire sauce, which is often used in commercial steak sauces), then Raisin the Steaks is the steak sauce for you.

Raisin the Steaks is wonderful with meatloaf and other ground beef dishes, and you can use it as a condiment on sandwiches and for dipping fries. It also makes a tasty marinade and wet rub for pork and beef, and although I haven't tried it on chicken yet I bet it would work with poultry, too. I absolutely love this sauce on venison burgers because of its hearty flavor that's not too tangy - I think it's the mellow raisins that help smooth out any gamey edges in venison, in contrast with certain store brand sauces that can bring out a harsh edge in game. Raisin the Steaks is currently on sale at the Carolina Sauce Company, so you have virtually nothing to lose by taking a chance on this great new steak sauce!

Zestfully yours,

Friday, February 20, 2009

Lilly's Gourmet Maple Butter

Lilly's Gourmet Maple Butter is a delicious old-fashioned treat that dates back almost 100 years to an old family recipe that helped a former schoolmarm with 14 children of her own make ends meet. Made with real butter and milk and with a lovely maple flavor that's just sweet enough without being cloying, Lilly's Maple Butter is simply spectacular on pancakes and French toast, stirred into hot cereal, warmed in the microwave and drizzled over vanilla ice cream, spooned onto baked sweet potatoes, spread on hot biscuits or toast, and used any other way you can think of when you're craving real maple flavor with buttery richness. I'm not embarrassed to confess that I've been known to eat it straight from the jar -- yes, it's that good, and addictive!

Today, Lilly's Gourmet Maple Butter is lovingly made in Wake Forest, North Carolina by the granddaughter of Lilly, the namesake of this decadent delight. It's currently on sale at the Carolina Sauce Company, and we'll send you a couple of wonderful free recipes when you order a jar from us!

Zestfully yours,

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Best Selling North Carolina Products for 2008

Below is our list of the top ten best-selling NC products for all of 2008 at the Carolina Sauce Company online store:

1. It should come as no surprise to fans of the old Boar & Castle Restaurant that our best-selling North Carolina product for 2008 was Castle Sauce, a long-awaited and much-loved classic steak sauce that's good on everything from steak to burgers to fries to sandwiches and oh, so much more! In fact, Castle Sauce has such a devoted following that it quickly became our top selling product across all categories for the entire year, despite the fact that it didn't even hit the market until October 2008!

2. Carolina Swamp Sauce, a unique Caribbean-spiced marinade and grilling sauce, finished 2nd on our list of best-selling NC products

3. One of our all-time best selling sauces, the all-purpose sweet & spicy Capsicana Zing Gourmet Sauce, took 3rd place honors. Zing Sauce comes in 2 convenient sizes, and it comes with free recipes, too!

4. Wells Hog Heaven Barbecue Sauce, an authentic eastern NC vinegar-based BBQ sauce, placed 4th on our best-seller list for 2008, and is a personal favorite for pulled pork barbeque.

5. Finishing 5th last year despite availability problems was Blue Tick Dressing, a delicious berry & poppyseed vinaigrette. If you'd like to be notified when Blue Tick Dressing is available again, simply email us at sales"AT"carolinasauce"DOT"com and we'll put you on our Blue Tick waiting list.

6. Carolina Cupboard Eastern NC BBQ Sauce, whose name says it all, ended up in 6th place on our list of best-selling NC products

7. The hot and spicy Scotts BBQ Sauce from Goldsboro, a classic vinegar based barbecue sauce that's ideal for pulled pork, finished 7th last year

8. The original Bone Suckin' Sauce, a tomato-based western NC style barbecue sauce, took 8th place honors for 2008 -- and it comes with free recipes when you order it from the Carolina Sauce Company!

9. In 9th place was Carolina Treet Original Cooking BBQ Sauce, a unique barbeque sauce that's for cooking with on the stove top or in the oven, rather than for grilling.

10. Completing our list of 2008's best selling North Carolina products was the tangy-sweet, mildly spicy Jim's Own Homestyle BBQ Sauce, a delicious Piedmont style (tomato & vinegar based) barbecue sauce that's fabulous on pork, chicken, ribs and more. Jim's Own Sauce comes in 3 convenient sizes, and it also comes with free recipes!

Zestfully yours,

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Mullen's Apple Sauce

The description on the label of Mullen's Apple Sauce says that it tastes like apple pie without the crust. Having had my share of store-bought apple sauce in my life, I was a bit skeptical -- until I opened my first jar of Mullen's Apple Sauce and had a taste. YUMMMMMM!! The label doesn't lie: Mullen's Apple Sauce really does taste like the mouthwatering filling of the best old-fashioned homemade apple pie you've ever had! The texture is just right, with big chunks of tender apples (I'm guessing more than 1 variety is used) in a thick sauce base of the perfect consistency (not gummy nor gritty nor runny), with just the right balance of natural sweetness (no sickly-sweet high fructose corn syrup here!) and pleasantly tart notes from a dash of lemon juice. The spices are subtle, without any single one standing out but instead blending in harmony to complement and enhance the natural flavor of the apples. Clearly, this all-natural apple sauce is made with the finest ingredients, and with a loving hand, just as in the olden days. And when you read Jim Mullen's story and taste his creation, you'll understand why I believe that Mullen's Apple Sauce really is the world's -- and not just Chicago's -- finest.

Mullen's Apple Sauce is delicious as a topping for pancakes and waffles, muffins, coffee cake, and vanilla ice cream (especially if you warm it up in your microwave before spooning over the ice cream). But don't confine this wholesome treat to the breakfast table or dessert tray: Mullen's Apple Sauce is also terrific as a condiment for all sorts of pork dishes, German food, roast turkey, grilled chicken and more. You can enjoy it chilled from the fridge as a no-work dessert, or mix it into a bowl of hot oatmeal or other hot cereal in the mornings, or simply grab a jar and a spoon and dig in. Once you try Mullen's Apple Sauce, we're sure you'll never go back to eating store brands again! Go ahead and try a jar (or more) while it's on sale at the Carolina Sauce Company, and support a good cause* while enjoying great food!

Zestfully yours,

*A portion of the profits from the sale of Mullen's Apple Sauce are donated to the Chicago Police Memorial Foundation, which assists officers and their families in times of need.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Best-Selling Jerk & Curry for 2008

If you're looking for the best Jamaican jerk products and curry sauces, look no further than our list of best selling jerk and curry products for 2008 at the Carolina Sauce Company online store:

1. Our best-selling Jamaican jerk is the wildly popular Walkerswood Traditional Jamaican Jerk Seasoning, an intensely aromatic and peppery-hot jerk paste or "wet rub" from Jamaica that's essential for making authentic jerked chicken, pork, fish, goat and other Jamaican dishes.

2. In second place is another favorite from Jamaica, Walkerswood Spicy Jamaican Jerk Marinade, which is ideal for marinating and cooking poultry, meat or seafood.

3. Another popular Walkerswood product, the fiery-hot but brightly-flavored Walkerswood Jonkanoo Pepper Sauce, finished third for 2008. Enjoy Jonkanoo hot sauce on all your favorite dishes when you want the taste of the islands.

4. The fourth place finisher is Nando's Curry Coconut Cooking & Grilling Sauce from South Africa, a rich and creamy tropical curry sauce that's spiced with the South African peri-peri pepper.

5. Busha Browne's Authentic Jerk Seasoning from Jamaica took fifth place for 2008. Don't let the container size fool you: this concentrated jerk paste is highly concentrated, and a little goes a long way!

6. The Mild version of Pluto's Certified Organic Jamaican Jerk Sauce came in 6th -- and it comes with a free recipe brochure when you buy it from the Carolina Sauce Company!

7. The award-winning Wahoo Willie's Jamaican Wing Sauce from Wrightsville Beach, NC combines traditional Jamaican jerk flavors in a buttery wing sauce for a spicy Caribbean alternative to ordinary hot wing sauces -- and you can also use it as a marinade and cooking sauce for meat, poultry and seafood. Best of all, it's currently on sale!

8. Pickapeppa Hot Spicy Jerk Seasoning from Jamaica finished 8th, and is a sweet and aromatic wet rub for all your jerk recipes.

9. One of my favorite all-purpose sauces, the versatile and mildly spicy Pluto's Paradise Potion, was 9th on our best-seller list, with its rich Caribbean flavors and food-friendly, mildly spicy heat level -- and it's certified organic, too!

10. Rounding out the list of 2008's best-selling jerks and curries is Pluto's Caribbean Bliss Original Spice Blend, an all-natural dry rub and seasoning that adds delicious island flavor to anything you sprinkle it on -- and it comes with a free recipe brochure, too!

Zestfully yours,

Monday, February 16, 2009

D'Vine Foods Muscadine BBQ Sauce

Made in North Carolina using locally grown sweet muscadine grapes, D'Vine Foods Muscadine BBQ Sauce is a deliciously sweet-tangy barbecue sauce unlike any other. The base is a savory tomato-vinegar-mustard combination often found in the southeastern portion of the state, and the muscadine grapes add a naturally sweet fruitiness and tang that blends surprisingly well to produce an overall flavor range that nicely complements grilled pork, chicken and meat. Use it for marinading, grilling, basting, finishing and dipping. You can also add Muscadine BBQ Sauce to pulled pork barbeque for a change of pace from traditional eastern style or Piedmont style pulled pork barbeque. I personally like dipping french fries in it instead of using ketchup. You can get creative and mix some of this barbecue sauce into ground beef for juicy and flavorful hamburgers that will have your family and guests asking for seconds. D'Vine Foods Muscadine BBQ Sauce is currently on sale at the Carolina Sauce Company, so you have nothing to lose by trying a bottle today!

Zestfully yours,

Sunday, February 15, 2009

2008's Best-Selling Salsa & Relish

Continuing our lists of best-selling sauces and other products in each category for the previous year, here is our list of the top ten best selling salsa and relish for 2008 at the Carolina Sauce Company:

1. At the top of the list is the mildly spicy but full-flavored Peppers Original Blue Crab Salsa, a tomato and pepper salsa made with real Maryland crabmeat. This salsa is for more than chips: pour it over spaghetti for a fresh alternative to pasta sauce!

2. In second place is Thomas Fish Camp Cocktail Sauce, an old-fashioned zesty cocktail sauce from North Carolina with a zippy horseradish kick.

3. Our third place finisher comes straight from Chicago: Capone Family Secret Hot Giardiniera, a spicy-hot traditional Italian condiment for sandwiches and subs, antipasto trays, appetizers and more -- and it comes with a free recipe for Giardiniera pizza!

4. Mama T's Hot Pepper Relish, from the North Carolina Outer Banks, came in 4th. This devilishly delicious and savory (not sweet) pepper relish adds fiery flavor to burgers, sandwiches, omelets and lots more.

5. Another North Carolina product, Thomas Fish Camp Tartar Sauce, took 5th place. Full of old-fashioned homemade flavor, this tartar sauce is far tastier than any grocery store brands and will complement all your seafood fare including fried shrimp, fish, deviled crabs, crabcakes, etc. Kids love it on fish sticks and even chicken nuggets!

6. Another unusual and delicious crab salsa, Peppers Zesty Blue Crab Salsa, was the 6th best selling salsa last year. This version adds a hefty dose of horseradish to kick up the spice in the original blue crab salsa recipe.

7. Scorned Woman Salsa, a smooth tomato-rich medium-hot salsa, came in 7th. Enjoy it with chips, on enchiladas and burritos, in tacos, with scrambled eggs, and as a spicy alternative to plain ketchup.

8. The Mild version of Capone Family Secret Giardiniera finished 8th last year, and is perfect for folks who enjoy authentic Italian flavor but prefer to avoid hot peppers. It comes with a free recipe for Giardiniera pizza!

9. The Mild version of Pepper Dog Salsa, a smoky Southwestern style salsa made in NC, took 9th place honors last year. Full of all-natural tomato and pepper flavor, this mildly spicy salsa has just a touch of jalapeno heat. And when you buy it from the Carolina Sauce Company, the ENTIRE price is donated to Operation Sauce Drop, our nonprofit program to send free BBQ Sauce and hot sauce to deployed troops!

10. Completing our list of the top ten best-selling salsas and relishes is the Medium version of Pepper Dog Salsa, with the same great smoky flavor as the mild but enough jalapeno fire to please people who prefer salsa with a kick.

Zestfully yours,

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Big Daddy's Superb Herb Seasoning

I had the pleasure of trying Big Daddy's Superb Herb Seasoning earlier this week after Eric Henderson of Big Daddy's Marinade stopped by to deliver more marinade and left me a case of his new Seasoning. He had just completed his first production run of the Superb Herb Seasoning, and let me tell you, this savory seasoning deserves the name "Superb." All natural, with no MSG, and featuring a secret blend of 9 different herbs and spices, Big Daddy's Superb Herb Seasoning is a gourmet alternative to your typical salty seasoning blends. You can smell the fragrant herbs the moment you pop the lid on this seasoning, and the flavors enhance poultry, meats and vegetables with complementary (not overpowering) herbal notes that bring out the best in whatever you cook.

Big Daddy's Superb Herb Seasoning is wonderful for roasting chicken and other poultry, and you can also sprinkle it on steaks and other meats before grilling, baking, or roasting. It's also terrific stirred into mashed potatoes, or stirred into melted butter or sour cream for a baked potato topping. Perhaps my favorite way of enjoying Big Daddy's Superb Herb Seasoning is mixed into an aromatic extra virgin olive oil and served in a little bowl for dipping breadsticks or pieces of crusty Italian bread. You can also sprinkle it over cooked veggies, white pizza, foccacia, and other savory fare. Instead of making ordinary garlic bread, sprinkle buttered bread with Big Daddy's Superb Herb Seasoning and then toast in a toaster oven or under your broiler. MMMMmmmmmm, delish! Big Daddy's Superb Herb Seasoning is made in North Carolina, and it has zero carbs. Go ahead and order a bottle (or more) while it's on sale at the Carolina Sauce Company!

Zestfully yours,

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Santo & Josie Pasta Sauce on Sale!

Close your eyes while you inhale the rich aroma and taste the robust flavors of Santo & Josie Pasta Sauces - you'll swear they're homemade, the product of long hours of slow-simmering with the finest ingredients carefully selected by a gourmet Italian chef. That's because they are: Santo & Josie Pasta Sauces are made in small batches by a couple that also runs an Italian restaurant in Charlotte, North Carolina, using their traditional Sicilian family recipes and authentic Italian ingredients to create the most delicious spaghetti and pasta sauces you've ever tasted from a jar. These sauces are wonderful for your favorite Italian recipes like lasagna, eggplant or chicken parmigiana, and on spaghetti and all sorts of pasta dishes, but you can also serve them warm in a bowl for dipping breadsticks as a hearty appetizer! Santo & Josie Pasta Sauces come in three mouthwatering flavors: Tomato Artichoke (our most popular flavor), the robust Tomato Olive (my husband's favorite), and my personal favorite, Tomato Eggplant (even folks who swear they hate eggplant LOVE this sauce!). Each jar contains a generous 26 ounces of delicious gourmet sauce, and they're on sale now at the Carolina Sauce Company online store!

Zestfully yours,

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Pluto's Blissful Beans

Here's another incredibly easy but blissfully delicious recipe from Pluto, the Jamaican ex-pat who created Pluto's Certified Organic Jamaican Sauces and Pluto's Caribbean Bliss Spice Blends. You can use whichever variety of Caribbean Bliss you prefer: Mild, Original Hot, Fiery Hot, or the Salt-Free Spice Blend if you are watching your sodium intake. You can also multiply the recipe if you have a crowd to feed. Serve Blissful Beans with rice for a vegetarian main course, or alone as a side dish. Enjoy!

1/2 cup chopped red onion
1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper
1 to 2 garlic cloves, minced
Olive oil
1 can red kidney beans, drained
Your choice of flavor of Pluto's Caribbean Bliss Seasoning
Optional: cooked rice

Saute the onion, pepper and garlic with olive oil in a medium saucepan. When they're soft, add the kidney beans and sprinkle with Pluto's Caribbean Bliss to taste. Stir well, heat through, and serve over cooked rice, or without rice if you prefer.

Zestfully yours,

PS: This is just one of several quick & easy free recipes you'll receive when you order one or more bottles of Pluto's Caribbean Bliss from the Carolina Sauce Company online store!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

2008's Best-Selling Dry Rubs & Seasonings

The following are the top ten best-selling dry rubs and seasonings for all of last year at the Carolina Sauce Company online store:

1. Our best-selling rub for 2008 was Calhoun's Charcoal Seasoning from Tennessee. Made with real charcoal, this is the dry rub you need if you're looking to add that charcoal-grilled flavor to steaks and other meats when all you have is a gas grill, or you're stuck cooking indoors.

2. The ever-popular Bad Byron's Butt Rub from Texas finished in second place. Don't underestimate this little rub with the funny name and label - the flavor is king-sized! Use Bad Byron's on pork butt, of course, but also on ribs (pork or beef), chicken, and anything else you smoke or grill.

3. From North Carolina comes Bone Suckin' Rib Rub, a local favorite with a growing following around the country. And yes, it's made by the same folks who make the famous Bone Suckin' Sauce!

4. Another North Carolina favorite, the original Adams Rib Rubb, took fourth place on our list of best selling rubs & seasonings. Not only is this mouthwatering rub delicious, but it helps tenderize tough cuts of meat, too.

5. Corky's Memphis BBQ Dry Rub finished 5th. From the famous Corky's BBQ joint in Tennessee, this is THE seasoning you need to make authentic Memphis dry ribs (no sauce) at home.

6. One of my favorite dry rubs came in 6th: Pig Pen's Original Seasoning. Rub this on all your meats and poultry before grilling, broiling or roasting. It makes the juiciest steaks, and also makes a savory popcorn or french fry seasoning. Heck, I've even been known to sprinkle Pig Pen's Seasoning on salads and vegetables!

7. From Al Farber's Steakhouse in Chicago comes the original Char Crust Seasoning, delivering delicious hickory smoked flavors to steaks, meats and poultry. This is another winner if you want juicy steaks.

8. Southern Twang Dry Rub from North Carolina came in eighth on our list of best selling rubs. This tangy-sweet-savory gourmet rub features tomato with a touch of pepper and orange zest, and is delightful on chicken, pork, and even seafood!

9. Big Bob Gibson Bar-B-Q Seasoning & Dry Rub has been around for almost a century, and has won numerous awards with its sweet-salty-spicy flavor. Use it for seasoning meat and poultry, and also as a table seasoning to sprinkle on veggies, fries and more.

10. Completing our list of best-selling seasonings & dry rubs for 2008 is Adams Ultimate Rib Rubb. Made from the same spice foundation as the original Adams Rib Rubb, the Ultimate version features a spicy hot kick that's sure to please fans of spicy foods.

Zestfully yours,

Monday, February 9, 2009

Best-Selling Marinades & Dressings for 2008

The following are the top ten best-selling marinades and dressings for 2008 at the Carolina Sauce Company:

1. Castle Sauce, a classic steak sauce and marinade from Greensboro NC inspired by the original Boar & Castle Sauce, not only finished first in this category, but it also was the overall best selling product across all categories for 2008!

2. Our second place finisher, Blue Tick Dressing, unfortunately is not currently available because the product line was sold and the new owner hasn't been selling this delicious berry and poppyseed vinaigrette. But we're hopeful it will return someday, so we're keeping a waiting list of folks who want to be notified if Blue Tick Dressing comes back on the market. If you wish to be added to our waiting list, simply email us at "salesATcarolinasauceDOTcom".

3. The third best-selling marinade for 2008 was our very own multiple-award-winning Greg's Happy Sauce. Made with the finest gourmet ingredients including olive oil, honey, ginger and garlic, this all-purpose marinade is fabulous in the kitchen and on the grill, on everything from meat and chicken to seafood, game and veggies. Greg's Happy Sauce comes with free recipes, and is on sale at the Carolina Sauce Company online store!

4. Nando's Lime & Cilantro Marinade is made in South Africa and masterfully combines citrusy lime with pungent cilantro and a dash of fiery peri-peri peppers for a mildly spicy, pleasantly tangy and velvety-smooth marinade for chicken and seafood. And it's currently on sale at Carolina Sauce -- and it's Kosher, too!

5. In fifth place is Big Daddy's Marinade, a bold and savory sauce that imparts rich flavor to pork, beef and game while tenderizing the toughest cuts of meat. You can also splash Big Daddy's Marinade on collards and other greens -- and it comes with free recipes, too!

6. Thomas Sauce is a peppery, tomato & vinegar based marinade that doubles as a barbecue sauce for pulled pork, and also adds tangy flavor to stews and ground beef recipes. Thomas Sauce comes in 5oz and 14oz bottles.

7. In seventh place on our list of best-selling dressings and marinades is the Asian-inspired Dave's Gourmet Soyabi Sauce. As the name implies, Soyabi blends savory soy sauce with piquant wasabi, making it a tasty dipping sauce for sushi, spring rolls, tempura and more. You can also marinade tuna steaks, salmon and other seafood in Dave's Soyabi -- and it's currently on sale at Carolina Sauce Company!

8. One of my favorite dressings, Mama T's Olive Oil Vinagrette from the North Carolina Outer Banks, came in 8th for 2008. This classic herb-infused vinaigrette is perfect for all your favorite green salads and steamed vegetables, and also doubles as a simple marinade for fish and seafood as well as chicken.

9. From the world-famous Nando's Chickenland restaurant chain comes Nando's Sundried Tomato & Basil Marinade, a Mediterranean-inspired marinade that's thick and rich, and pleasantly heated by South African peri-peri peppers. It's Kosher, and on sale at the Carolina Sauce Company!

10. Finishing off our list of 2008's best-selling marinades & dressings is another delicious dressing that sadly isn't available anymore, Wahoo Willie's Carribean Ranch Dressing from Wrightsville Beach, NC. But don't worry, we're in the process of introducing new dressings and marinades in 2009, so get ready for some new names on future best-seller lists!

Zestfully yours,

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Best-Selling BBQ Sauce for 2008

The following is the list of the top ten best-selling barbecue sauces for 2008 at the Carolina Sauce Company online store:

1. North Carolina's very own Carolina Swamp Sauce finished the year as the best-selling barbeque sauce, despite its not being a traditional vinegar-based BBQ sauce. Instead, Swamp Sauce features Caribbean-inspired tangy-spicy flavors that make it a mouthwatering marinade and grilling sauce for chicken, shrimp and meats.

2. Wells Hog Heaven Barbecue Sauce finished in a very close second place. Hailing from Wells Meat Market in the tiny eastern NC town of Burgaw, Wells Hog Heaven BBQ Sauce is an authentic eastern NC vinegar-based barbecue sauce without tomatoes and with a pleasant peppery kick.

3. Another eastern style vinegar based BBQ sauce, Carolina Cupboard Eastern NC Bar-B-Que Sauce, took third place honors for 2008.

4. Continuing with the eastern NC theme, the fourth best-selling BBQ sauce for 2008 was Scott's Barbecue Sauce from Goldsboro. What distinguishes Scott's is that its roots date back to 1917, and it's made with a hefty dose of red pepper and no sugar, making it ideal for folks who like their pulled pork BBQ savory and spicy!

5. The original Bone Suckin' Sauce, a western NC style barbecue sauce featuring plenty of tomatoes along with vinegar, finished fifth on the list of 2008's best-selling barbeque sauces. It comes with free recipes, too!

6. Next on the list is Carolina Treet, a unique barbecue sauce in that you use it for cooking, instead of adding it to prepared food. Carolina Treet is especially good with chicken, and because you use it on the stovetop or in the oven you don't need to wait for nice grilling weather to enjoy it!

7. The mild Homestyle version of Jim's Own Bar-B-Que Sauce came in seventh for 2008. Jim's Own BBQ Sauce is a tangy-sweet Piedmont style BBQ sauce (vinegar, tomatoes, sugar & a touch of pepper) that comes in three sizes (pints, quarts and mini-jars), and you get free recipes when you buy it from the Carolina Sauce Company!

8. In eighth place was the original flavor of George's Barbecue Sauce, another eastern NC barbeque sauce that adds just a touch of tomato and apple to its vinegar base for a mellow flavor that earned it recognition in the popular cooking magazine "Every Day with Rachael Ray" as the best in the Carolinas! George's BBQ Sauce comes with free recipes, too.

9. Straight from the famous Sam Dillard's BBQ joint in Durham NC comes the 9th place finisher, Dillard's BBQ Sauce. With its unique blend of turmeric and other spices in a vinegar and tomato base, Dillards Bar-B-Q Sauce is great with chicken as well as pork.

10. Completing the list of 2008's best-selling barbecue sauces is Jim's Own Hot Bar-B-Que Sauce. With the same great flavor as the original Homestyle version of Jim's Own Sauce, the Hot version includes plenty of habanero fire for folks who like their BBQ hot. Available in pints and quarts, Jim's Own Hot BBQ Sauce also comes with free recipes.

Zestfully yours,

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Pluto's Paradise Seafood Salad

I adapted this recipe from an original jerked seafood salad recipe by Pluto, the creator of Pluto's Organic Jerk Sauces. Of course, if you prefer the more intense flavors of traditional Jamaican jerk seasonings, you can substitute either the Hot Jamaican Jerk or Mild Jamaican Jerk sauce from Pluto. But I personally find that the gentler aromatic herbs and spices in his Paradise Potion sasuce are the ideal match for more delicate seafood. You don't really need to measure anything for this recipe - just go by how many people you want to feed, and how saucy you like your salad. You can serve this salad warm, or chill the cooked seafood for several hours to serve cold.

Begin with your favorite raw seafood: cubed salmon or tuna, peeled shrimp, and scallops all work well. Heat a bit of olive oil in a pan and sautee the seafood until *almost* cooked. Add Pluto's Paradise Potion to taste, and continue sauteing until the seafood is cooked, being careful not to overcook. Place the warm seafood over a bed of your favorite salad greens (preferably organic) and serve, OR chill the cooked seafood for several hours to serve cold over a bed of greens (and you can add more Pluto's Paradise Potion from the bottle as a dressing).

I like to add some very thinly sliced cucumber rounds and chopped scallions to this salad just before serving, and you can also add some shredded carrots.

Zestfully yours,

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Best-Selling Hot Sauce for 2008

Below is the list of the top ten best-selling hot sauces at the Carolina Sauce Company for all of 2008:

1. Busha Browne's Pukka Sauce: This all-purpose, flavor-packed hot sauce is made in Jamaica and inspired by old colonial recipes, and is our alltime best selling hot sauce

2. Capsicana Zing Sauce: A spicy-sweet, mildly hot favorite from North Carolina, Zing Sauce is delicious on prepared food and as a cooking ingredient. You can get it in 5 oz and 10 oz bottles, and it comes with a free recipe sheet!

3. Matouk's Calypso Sauce: Made in Trinidad & Tobago and featuring a spicy mustard and scotch bonnet pepper base with just a touch of sugar, Matouk's Calypso is thick and rich, and delivers authentic island flavor to all your favorite foods

4. Matouk's West Indian Hot Sauce: A little mellower and sweeter than the Calypso Sauce thanks to the addition of papaya, this mouthwatering gem of a hot sauce is fabulous on chicken and seafood, and any tropical dishes

5. Matouk's Flambeau: As fiery-hot as the Caribbean sun at high noon in the summertime, Matouk's Flambeau adds incendiary heat and savory mustard flavor to hearty fare -- and even scrambled eggs, if you have a Teflon tongue!

6. Scorned Woman Hot Sauce: This classic vinegar-based hot sauce features black pepper as well as several different types of chile peppers, for plenty of fiery kick! Aptly named after the saying that Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned.

7. Matouk's Hot Pepper Sauce: This classic Caribbean hot sauce features aged, pickled scotch bonnet peppers in a spicy, savory mustard base. Try it on grilled foods, sausages, and your favorite sandwiches for a burst of flavor and fire!

8. Georgia Peach and Vidalia Onion Hot Sauce: Two summertime treats from Georgia -- sweet, juicy, ripe peaches and mellow Vidalia onions -- are expertly blended with just the right touch of hot peppers to yield a mildy hot but seductively delicious sauce. This is a great "introductory" hot sauce for folks who normally don't care for spicy foods

9. Dave's Ultimate Insanity Sauce: Fear this sauce. I am NOT kidding. This is an ultra-hot food additive that is best used in micro-droplets (off a toothpick) and added to recipes, NOT used directly on food. Yes, it is that painfully hot, and unforgiving. You've been warned..... but apparently that hasn't stopped hordes of chileheads from buying tons of this hot sauce!

10. Dave's Insanity Sauce: The original "hottest sauce in the universe", Dave's Insanity began the ultra-hot craze some years ago, and is now generally considered the "gateway sauce" for serious chileheads who are ready to take the plunge and enter the world of extract-enhanced ultra-hot sauces. Again, you've been warned....

Zestfully yours,

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Susie's Tamarind Tango Sauce

Our latest addition to the Susie's Hot Sauce product line is the tangy Susie's Tamarind Tango Sauce. Made in the tiny Caribbean nation of Antigua and almost impossible to find elsewhere, Susie's Hot Sauces have a faithful and growing following among folks who have visited the Caribbean or otherwise been lucky enough to taste one of these devilishly delicious tropical hot sauces. The Tamarind Tango sauce has an enticing sweet-tart flavor thanks to a blend of tamarinds (there are chunks of this exotic fruit in the sauce!) with just enough sugar cane juice to soften the "sour edge" typically associated with tamarind pulp. Hot peppers add a touch of spicy fire that reaches a pleasant medium heat level before gently fading, preparing you for the next bite of food without deadening your taste buds.

It's no surprise that Susie's Tamarind Tango makes a nice alternative to ordinary steak sauce -- after all, tamarind is a commonly found ingredient in most commercial steak sauces and in Worcestershire sauce. Since its arrival at the Carolina Sauce Company, I've been using Tamarind Tango to add spicy tang to meatloaf and burgers, in addition to splashing it on steak. This sauce will enhance pretty much any meats, from beef and pork to venison and other game, and I suspect it would be very good with veggie burgers and grilled portobello mushrooms, too. And if you're watching your sodium intake, you'll be glad to know that Susie's Tamarind Tango is a very low sodium sauce, with only 30mg per 1 Tbs serving. The flavor is rich enough, however, that you won't miss the salt. So if you're looking for a change from your ordinary store-bought steak sauce, or are a fan of Susie's hot sauces, or just enjoy sweet-tart-spicy sauces with a pourable but pleasantly chunky texture, then you need to give Susie's Tamarind Tango sauce a try!

Zestfully yours,

PS: Susie's also makes a spicy mango sauce, which we're hoping to add to our online store sometime later this year. If we do so, we'll be announcing it here!

Monday, February 2, 2009

Top 10 Best-Selling Sauces for 2008

At long last, we've finished tabulating the results and compiling the list of the Top Ten Best Selling Sauces and Products at the Carolina Sauce Company for the entire year of 2008. The results are posted below:

1. If you're a fan of the old Boar & Castle Sauce, or if you've recently had the pleasure of enjoying a bottle of the new Castle Sauce, you're probably not surprised to learn that this old-fashioned classic steak sauce is our best-selling product for 2008, even though it came on the market as recently as October. Now THAT is what I call a top-selling product with a fanatical following!

2. In second place for 2008 is Busha Browne's Pukka Sauce, a all-purpose hot sauce from Jamaica that's fiery but flavorful, and as food-friendly as you can get. And no, it doesn't taste like Jamaican jerk seasoning, in case you've never tried it and weren't sure if you'd like it. Pukka Sauce is our all-time best-selling hot sauce, and was well on its way to being our top-selling product for 2008 until Castle Sauce arrived.

3. Buderim Ginger Bears are a grown-up gummy candy from Australia that's made with real ginger, and is our third best selling product at the Carolina Sauce Company. Be careful: This zippy snack is addictively good!

4. In fourth place for 2008 is Carolina Swamp Sauce, a unique gourmet marinade and barbecue sauce from North Carolina that's *not* a vinegar-based BBQ sauce but is darn good on meat, chicken, shrimp and seafood. It was featured this past summer in Better Homes & Gardens Magazine for its delicious flavor and versatility.

5. Capsicana Zing Sauce, the fifth place finisher, is another wildly popular North Carolina product, with a spicy (but not hot) and slightly sweet flavor that complements just about anything, and is a tasty addition to recipes (it also comes with a recipe sheet).

6. In sixth place is Matouk's Calypso Sauce, a West Indian hot sauce from the island nation of Trinidad & Tobago that's packed with scotch bonnet peppers in a thick, sweet and spicy mustard base

7. If you're looking for an authentic eastern NC style barbecue sauce, you can't go wrong with Wells Hog Heaven BBQ Sauce, made with vinegar and spices (no tomatoes!) in the little town of Burgaw, NC.

8. Matouk's West Indian Hot Sauce finished in 8th place for 2008, and adds tropical fruit to Matouk's famous scotch bonnet & mustard hot sauce base. This hot sauce is killer on chicken and seafood dishes!

9. Straight from Jamaica comes Walkerswood Traditional Jamaican Jerk Seasoning, and the name says it all. This intensely aromatic and spicy wet rub is what you need to make authentic jerked chicken, pork, goat, and other traditional Jamaican jerk fare.

10. In 10th place for 2008, and easily scoring a 10 on a 10-point heat scale where 1 is mildest and 10 is hottest, Matouk's Flambeau Sauce is SERIOUSLY hot thanks to a hefty dose of aged, pickled scotch bonnet peppers in a thick and savory mustard base. If you're a chile pepper addict who loves to play with fire but also appreciates good flavor, Matouk's Flambeau is the hot sauce for you!

Stay tuned as we will soon be posting the top ten best sellers for 2008 in each product category including hot sauce, barbecue sauce, etc.

Zestfully yours,