Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Sauteed Kale with Garlic

Greens are a staple in Southern cuisine. While collards, turnip greens and mustard greens are old favorites, kale is also grown and enjoyed in North Carolina. Many traditional recipes call for boiling the greens with some fatback or ham hocks, but I prefer to saute my greens when I can find some fresh young, tender greens at a local market. Today I was fortunate to pick up some young, locally grown, organic kale at the Whole Foods store in Durham, and here's how I cooked it this evening.

Ingredients
1/2 lb. young or baby kale
1 Tbs bacon fat OR olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 cup white wine
Optional: Ground black pepper or red pepper, salt, hot sauce

Wash the kale, trim off any tough stalks, and coarsely chop the leaves. Melt the bacon fat or heat the olive oil in a large, deep skillet over medium heat. Stir in the minced garlic and saute for a few minutes until the garlic softens. Add the kale, stir and cover to steam-cook for a few minutes. Uncover, add the wine, stir well, re-cover and cook for about 10 to 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until kale has softened. Taste and seasoned if desired with pepper and/or salt and/or hot sauce. Note: When I cook the kale in bacon fat, I find that it needs no additional seasoning, except for maybe a splash of hot sauce if I'm craving something spicy.

Zestfully yours,
Gloria

PS: This was the side dish that I served with my "famous" mussels. I'll post my mussels recipe within the next few days, so make sure to stay tuned to this blog!

PPS: I buy my bacon from a butcher who buys naturally raised, free-range pork from a local farm, and he smokes and cures it naturally without nitrites. The farm is not officially certified as "organic" because of the overwhelming costs and bureaucracy involved in obtaining government certification. Whenever I fry up some of this naturally produced bacon, which also happens to be leaner than mass-produced commercial brands from grocery stores, I save and refrigerate the drippings for use in recipes.


Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Hurry, Our August Coupon Expires Tomorrow!

Our special 5% off coupon expires at midnight tomorrow Wednesday, August 31st, which means you're running out of time to save 5% off your product total at the Carolina Sauce online store. This coupon is good on ALL orders--no minimum purchase required--and applies even to already-discounted sale items. You'll find the coupon code in the August issue of the Carolina Sauce Newsletter, along with another coupon for FREE ground shipping when you order $95 or more in products from Carolina Sauces, plus a list of all the new products recently added to our online offerings. In the Newsletter you'll also find our featured August recipe and information about our brand-new selection of gourmet gifts. Both Newlsetter coupons are re-usable, so even if you already used our August coupon when you first received the Newsletter you can go ahead and place another order with 5% off--BUT don't don't wait too long because the special August coupon will expire at midnight EDT tomorrow, August 31, 2011.

Zestfully yours,
Gloria

PS: Our FREE ground shipping coupon doesn't expire, so feel free to order $95 or more anytime and get free shipping!


Monday, August 29, 2011

American Express is Welcome!

In all my excitement to announce our Grand Re-Opening last month, I'm pretty sure I completely forgot to announce that the Carolina Sauce online store now accepts American Express, aka Amex, for payment! Over the years we have had an increasing number of inquiries from customers wanting to use their Amex cards to pay for their orders online. As part of the transition to the new warehouse, we took the opportunity to add Amex to our payment options. So now when you shop online and get to the Billing section of the checkout process, you can select American Express as your payment method, as well as PayPal, MasterCard, Visa and Discover. We hope this will help those of you out who prefer to pay with Amex, especially those placing business or corporate orders.

We continue to strive to provide a pleasant, easy and secure shopping experience for our Carolina Sauce customers, and we value your feedback and suggestions. If you ever have any questions or comments, please don't hesitate to contact Customer Service by email anytime or by online Live Chat during business hours. You can also email me personally, or feel free to contact me on Twitter and I'll be happy to help any way I can. You're also welcome to leave a comment on this blog, or on our Facebook page.

Zestfully yours,
Gloria


Sunday, August 28, 2011

5 Quick High-Energy Snacks

Liverpool Discovers - The Runner When your schedule gets hectic, it can be hard to squeeze in enough time for exercise, especially if you're already feeling low on energy and short on time for a healthy pre-workout snack. While energy bars can seem like a simple solution, many of them are merely glorified candy bars, are packed with artificial ingredients or chemicals, or simply don't taste very good. The cost of energy bars can also really add up. I've found it more affordable--and tastier--to rely on a simple snack of "real" foods for energy before I go on my morning run or play hockey or engage in other exercise. They require little or no work to prepare, and at least for me they're easily and quickly digested, meaning that I'm ready to go within an hour or less. Here are five of my favorite go-to "fuel foods," which I usually accompany with a glass of water and cup of coffee in the mornings:

1. Banana and Dark Chocolate: Depending on how much time I have to digest before exercising, and how hard I plan on working, I'll eat either a half or whole banana along with a square of dark chocolate. If you prefer milk chocolate, or a spoonful of peanut butter, that would work, too.

Apple and peanut butter 2. Half an apple with peanut butter: I cut half an apple in to two quarters, remove the core and spread the middle with a little bit of natural, crunchy peanut butter. An entire apple is usually too much for me if I plan on running or skating within an hour of eating, so I wrap the uneaten half with some plastic wrap and refrigerate it to enjoy with my post-exercise meal.

Chai Tea Yogurt with Honey 3. Nonfat or low fat yogurt plus honey: For me, a half-cup of plain yogurt drizzled with a tablespoon of honey is the perfect amount.

4. Handful of nuts with dried fruit: Unsalted peanuts, walnuts, or pecans with raisins, dried blueberries or dried cranberries - I mix an equal amount of one type of nut with one type of dried fruit for a total of about 1/4 cup.

Pecan-stuffed-Dates 5. Almond- or pecan-stuffed dates: This one is a little "fancier" since I don't always have dried dates, but boy is it delicious, and full of energy! I cut a slit in 3 or 4 pitted dates and stuff each with a whole almond or a pecan half, and savor every bite.

By the way, if you find yourself getting the afternoon munchies or are running out of steam at work and start craving junk food or a candy bar, you might want to consider bringing one of these snacks to work to use as a healthier "pick me up," with or without a cup of coffee.

Do you have a favorite energy snack? Please leave a comment and let us know how you fuel up.

Zestfully yours,
Gloria
Carolina Sauce Company


Friday, August 26, 2011

We Have Cheese!

The Carolina Sauce Company is now your source for fine domestic and imported cheese. From creamy brie to tangy blue cheese, rare aged gouda to classic Cheddar, hard-to-find Irish cheeses and of course classic Italian hard cheeses, we probably have what you're looking for. If you enjoy cooking with cheese or slicing it for sandwiches, or sprinkling grated or shredded cheese on your favorite dishes, or serving a well-appointed, palate-pleasing plate of cheeses before or after dinner, make sure to visit our brand-new Cheese and Cheese Gifts page.

We list just a small sampling of the wide variety of individually-packed cheeses and special cheese assortments you can order through our carefully-selected cheese vendors. For more information about a specific selection, or to browse the full offerings available from our partners, simply click on any link on the page and you'll land on the page for that product at our vendor's site--and from there, you can explore what they have to offer.

Zestfully yours,
Gloria


Thursday, August 25, 2011

Carolina Blue Chicken

The name of this recipe refers to my inspiration, Chicken Cordon Bleu, and my challenge, reinventing the classic dish with a North Carolina twist, using NC products. I've made it with two different NC cheeses and two different NC meats, for a total of 4 variations. Although all four versions are richly satisfying and flavorful, my personal favorite is bacon and hoop cheese, an old-fashioned Southern cheese often found in country stores and even at rural gas stations. I've listed both cheeses and both meats in the recipe, so that you can mix and match as you wish and decide for yourself which combination you prefer.

Any dry white wine will work in this recipe, but because of the Carolina theme I made it a point to use a dry NC wine, which presented a challenge in itself because sweet scuppernong or muscadine wines are far more common in NC. Although Biltmore in Asheville makes some dry whites, their grapes are usually brought in from CA. Luckily there are a few wineries in the Yadkin Valley area of NC that produce decent dry whites. Rag Apple Lassie Pinot Gris was recommended to me at the wine store, and although I was rather underwhelmed by it as a drinking wine it was certainly serviceable for the purposes of cooking.

I'm convinced that this dish would be absolutely wonderful if served over fresh-baked, fluffy biscuits split in half, but I haven't tried it that way yet as my biscuit-making skills aren't up to par. Grits would also work, no doubt, as would a wedge of cornbread on the side. And a big mess of collards seasoned with ham and a few splashes of a genuine Carolina hot pepper sauce would be the ideal vegetable side dish, of course.

Have fun with this North Carolina themed recipe, and please leave a comment here to let us know what ingredients you used and what worked or didn't. I still consider it a "work in progress" and would love some feedback from other cooks out there.

Ingredients
6 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
8 oz thinly sliced NC cheese, such as mild hoop cheese (I also tried Calvander, an Asiago style cheese)
6 wide slices of bacon* OR 6 thin slices of country ham, cut to fit the chicken thighs
Whole-grain mustard (I used Lusty Monk from Asheville NC, available at Whole Foods)
3 Tbs whole wheat flour
1 1/2 tsp NC BBQ rub (I used Bone Suckin' Hot Seasoning)
4 Tbs butter (if using bacon, reduce to 2 Tbs plus the bacon drippings)
1/2 cup dry NC white wine
1/4 tsp black pepper OR several twists from your pepper mill
1 cup half and half
1 Tbs cornstarch

*Depending on the width of the bacon and how much it might shrink during cooking, you may need more than 1 slice per thigh. To be on the safe side, go ahead and fry some extra slices. If you end up not needing them, finish cooking them thoroughly and store in the fridge for BLTs or salads the next day.

If using bacon, cook the bacon in a large, deep skillet until almost done but still soft. Remove bacon from skillet and place on paper towels to absorb grease. Reserve the grease in the skillet for frying the chicken.

Spread the chicken thighs flat on a piece of plastic wrap, cover with another piece of plastic wrap and then gently pound until about 1/4" thin or so. Remove top layer of plastic and place one or more slices of cheese on each thigh to cover the surface. then spread a thin layer of mustard on each. Top with a slice or two of bacon, or a slice of country ham, Fold each thigh over and secure the ends with toothpicks. Mix together the flour and BBQ rub, then roll each thigh in the mixture to coat completely.

Melt the butter in the skillet over medium-high heat (together with the bacon grease if using bacon). Add the thighs and brown on all sides. Add wine and black pepper to the skillet, reduce heat to low, cover and cook until the chicken is done, about 30 minutes. Remove thighs to a heat-proof platter or tray and hold in warm oven while you prepare the white sauce.

For the sauce, whisk together the half-and-half and the cornstarch until completely blended. You can also place in a lidded glass jar and shake vigorously until fully blended. Stir into the skillet drippings, raise heat slightly and cook until thickened to desired consistency, stirring constantly. When sauce is ready, remove chicken from oven, remove toothpicks and serve topped with the sauce.

Zestfully yours,
Gloria


Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Castle Sauce is Back in Stock!

At long last, Castle Sauce from Thomas Gourmet Foods is available again at the Carolina Sauce Company! This is the same recipe perfected recently when the last "missing ingredient" was discovered, and it's a dead ringer in taste for the old original sauce that was bottled in Greensboro until 1997--and that's not just my opinion (which, by the way, is based on my regular consumption of the old original back in the '80s in Winston-Salem, plus the 2 bottles I have left from the final bottling in 1997), but it's also the overwhelming customer feedback we've received since the 2010 version was released.

If you've never tried Castle Sauce, you'll be in for a treat. This is the ideal all-purpose condiment for burgers, steaks, onion rings, fries, popcorn shrimp, hot dogs, sandwiches, meatloaf, baked beans and even fried chicken or fish. The tangy mustard-tomato flavor has a zippy finish, and the thick consistency means that the sauce will stick to your food instead of dripping off or making a mess. Castle Sauce has a devoted following among folks who remember the old original, and it's not uncommon for three generations of families to enjoy it--yes, it's kid-friendly, and a favorite for dunking chicken nuggets or french fries.

Here's a hearty thank you to everyone who's been patiently waiting since our re-opening for their Castle Sauce "fix" - we really appreciate your patience! And if you're looking for a coupon to save some money when you buy Castle Sauce, you'll find two different coupons available in the August issue of the Carolina Sauce Newsletter.

Zestfully yours,
Gloria


Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Carolina Sauce Newsletter: FREE Shipping, August Coupon, New Products

FREE Shipping & August Coupon


The Carolina Sauce Company now offers FREE shipping on all orders of $95 or more at the Carolina Sauces online store! Simply enter the coupon code FREESHIP95 for free ground shipping whenever your product total is $95 or higher. This coupon never expires, so make sure to save it and use as often as you wish!

If your order is less than $95, just use our August coupon code, SUMMER11 for 5% off your product total at the Carolina Sauces online store, no minimum purchase required! This coupon is good even on already-discounted sale items, and no order is too small. Our SUMMER11 coupon is good only in August, however, and will expire at midnight EDT on Wednesday, August 31st, so now's the time to try some of our new products, listed below.

NEW PRODUCTS: Hot Sauce, Snacks and Gourmet Gifts


The following new hot sauces, pepper extracts, rubs, condiments, snacks and sweets have recently been added to the Carolina Sauces online store:

*Heartbreaking Dawn's Hot Sauces from upstate NY are finely crafted using uncommon chile peppers such as the fiery scorpion pepper and creatively blended with unique ingredients for delicious and interesting flavors. 3 varieties available.

*New varieties of Blair's Death Sauces, including Blair's Ultra Death with habanero, serrano, cayenne and jolokia peppers; the milder Blair's Jalapeno Death spiked with tequila; Blair's Mini-Death 4-pack for gifts and hot sauce on-the-go; and the collectible Blair's 2 a.m. Reserve Extract and Blair's 3 a.m. Reserve Extract, both in stunning autographed wax-topped designer bottles.

*Mongoose Hot Sauce, an ultra-hot sauce made from Fatalii and jolokia peppers for deadly heat.

*Ass Reaper Hot Sauce, made with habaneros, scotch bonnets and African pepper extract, and decorated with a scary skull & cape for a Grim Reaper look--perfect for Halloween!

*Danny Cash's Naga Jolokia 1%er Powder, quite possibly the hottest powdered chile blend on the planet.

*Special hot sauces and extracts for collectors, including 1 Million Scoville Concentrated Pepper Extract with HPLC-certified heat level; Cool 1,000,000 Scoville Extract in a signed, numbered and dated tin cannister; Pure Cap Extract in a medicine bottle with dropper; Dave's Insanity Private Reserve 2011 Edition, hand-signed, numbered and packed in a wooden coffin with yellow "Caution" tape; 16 Million Pure Capsaicin Crystals Kit complete with surgical mask, lab gloves, tweezer-forceps and a vial of capsaicin crystals; and Da Bomb The Final Answer with Lock & Key Display Case, all excellent gifts for serious chileheads.

*Naga Sabi Hot Sauce, an explosive blend of naga jolokia peppers and sinus-clearing wasabi.

*New ultra-hot pepper extracts from Mad Dog, including Mad Dog's Revenge certified at 1 million SHUs of heat; Mad Dog 22 Midnight Special clocking in at 2 million SHUs; Mad Dog 38 Special with 3 million SHUs; Mad Dog 44 Magnum with 4 million SHUs; and Mad Dog 357 Extract with 5 million SHUs.

*Jolokia 10 Mustard, a premium, all-natural mustard spiked with red habaneros and jolokia peppers, for a happy marriage of flavor and fire.

*Crazy Jerry's Shrimply Delicious Cocktail Sauce, a zesty cocktail sauce for shrimp and seafood, with just the right touch of spicy hot peppers.

*For fans of hot snacks, we have BOTH flavors of Deano's Jalapeno Chips made from thinly sliced jalapenos, NOT potatoes: spicy Cheddar Jalapeno Chips, and tangy Ranch Jalapeno Chips.

*Like Beef Jerky? We now have hot and spicy Blair's Original Death Beef Jerky, and super-hot Blair's XXX Sudden Death Beef Jerky.

*If spicy potato chips are more your style, check out Blair's Death Rain Kettle Cooked Potato Chips in 4 flavors: fiery Habanero Potato Chips, zesty Buffalo Wing Potato Chips, tangy Cheddar Potato Chips, and smoky Chipotle Potato Chips.

*Continuing with the snack theme, we have two new jazzy queso dips: medium-heat Crazy Jerry's Hot 'n Chili Cheese Dip, and seriously hot Blair's Fire-Roasted Cheddar Queso Dip, XXX Hot.

*Finally, for a cool and creamy dessert, we've added the original Cheesecake in a Jar, which is fabulous drizzled over ice cream or pound cake, as a dip for fruit or graham crackers, for frosting a cake, and even swirled into hot cereal.

The Thrill of the Grill: Techniques, Recipes, & Down-Home Barbecue *Looking for a cookbook, books about food, or books about writing about food? Simply visit our NEW Cookbooks page to see just a few of the interesting cookbooks and other types of books available from our partners, all at bargain prices. Click on any "Buy" button for more info, and to search for additional titles, including non-food books.

*Gourmet Gift Sets: Also through our partners, we are now able to offer a mouthwatering array of Gourmet Gifts to fit any budget and satisfy any taste preference, including a brand-new All-American BBQ Gift Set, a convenient Travel Spice Kit to help add flavor to boring road food, a luxuriously bountiful Well-Stocked Entertaining Pantry, and everything you need to make Authentic Spanish Tapas. Be on the lookout for gorgeous gift baskets, fine cheeses, and other delectable specialty foods coming in the near future! Please note: Orders for these gourmet gifts, as well as for cookbooks, meats, cheeses, art, posters and other partner products are directly fulfilled by our partners, and thus any Carolina Sauces coupons do not apply. For partner coupons, simply click on the "Coupons" tab on the Carolina Sauce Company Facebook page.

Our new warehouse will soon have many of the popular North Carolina products and other old favorites back in stock again, so stay tuned for future announcements on this blog and on our Facebook page as more products become available, both new and old. If you have questions about product availability or your order on the Carolina Sauces store, or any other customer service needs, our new customer service email is service@carolinasauces.com. We also have a Live Chat Line you can contact for immediate assistance.

August Recipe: Tummy-Taming Iced Tea


This soothing and refreshing iced herbal tea is a favorite at the Carolina Sauce Company, especially when we've overindulged on spicy or rich foods, or when any of us has a sensitive stomach. I brew it by the quart in a 4-cup Pyrex® measuring cup, so that I can keep a pitcher in the refrigerator. You can also drink it while it's hot, if you prefer--simply steep for only 15 minutes, then serve hot. Most folks find this tea sweet enough "as is," but you can add some honey while it's hot, or your favorite sweetener after you pour the tea over ice.

Ingredients
2 bags peppermint tea
1 bag ginger tea
1 bag chamomile tea
1 large piece of stick cinnamon
4 cups boiling water

Place the tea bags and cinnamon stick in a 4-cup glass measuring cup or in a heat-proof glass pitcher. Add the boiling water, cover and steep for at least 30 minutes, ideally longer. The longer you steep, the more flavor and goodness the teas will release. When ready to serve, remove the cinnamon stick and gently squeeze out the teabags over the steeping container. Fill a heat-proof drinking glass 2/3 with ice, then pour in the tea and stir, leaving room for additional ice. Add more ice as desired to further chill the tea. Store the unserved tea in the refrigerator. Tip: You can re-use the cinnamon stick several times.

Find Recipes, Special Coupons, Product Reviews, Zesty News & More


The Carolina Sauce Facebook Page is your source for Carolina Sauce news, interesting food articles, and exclusive Facebook-only coupons. For access to these special coupons and the latest zesty news, simply visit our Facebook page and click on the "Like" button to become a Fan. You can then click on the Coupons tab and access special offers. And if you're looking for new recipes, grilling tips, product reviews, and the occasional chuckle, visit this blog on a regular basis. Here's where we post delicious recipes, review new products as soon as they arrive, announce any discontinued or unavailable products, warn of possible product shortages, run special sales and discounts, and provide other useful information. Subscribe to our free RSS feed and you won't miss a single zesty thing! Just fill in your subscription info in the spaces provided in the left-hand column of this blog.

Follow SaucyGlo on Twitter for additional exclusive coupons, the latest food news, & for sharing zesty tips!

Zestfully yours,
Gloria


Sunday, August 21, 2011

Halibut with Mushrooms in Tarragon Lemon Butter

This recipe for two is low-carb with mild but pleasantly interesting flavors. I came up with it a couple of days ago as a gentle entree for someone on a very low carb diet and with a sensitive stomach, and it was well-received. I used frozen halibut fillets, but probably any mild white fish would work.

Ingredients
2 Tbs unsalted butter
4 baby bella or white mushrooms, sliced (about 3/4 cup sliced)
2 halibut fillets, 6-8 oz each
1/2 tsp dried tarragon
Juice of 1/2 a lemon
Salt & pepper to taste

Using a pan large enough to hold both fish fillets, melt the butter over medium heat then add the mushrooms and saute until they start to soften. Add tarragon and lemon juice, season with salt & pepper if desired, stir and saute until mushrooms are soft. Use a slotted spoon to remove the mushrooms and set aside. Add the fish to the pan and cook for 1 to 2 minutes, then carefully flip, reduce heat to medium-low and cover the pan. Cook for 6 to 8 minutes or until fish is just cooked--time will vary depending on thickness of fillets. You want the fish to flake in the middle but still be moist, not overcooked--I began checking for doneness after 5 minutes. Once fish is done, serve and top with reserved mushrooms and drizzle the with the tarragon lemon butter from the pan.

Zestfully yours,
Gloria

PS: If you're counting carbs or watching your sugar intake but want to continue enjoying flavorful, well-seasoned foods, check out our varied selection of low-carb and no carb sauces, seasonings and condiments. We also offer meats and cheeses through our carefully selected partners, including genuine Smithfield, North Carolina country ham that's sure to satisfy any carnivore.


Friday, August 19, 2011

New Gourmet Gifts!

Are you looking for a tasteful housewarming gift, a gourmet business or corporate gift, a thank-you gift for a hospitable host, a special-occasion gift for someone who enjoys cooking, or simply wish to treat yourself to an assortment of delicious products for your kitchen, grill or table? Check out our new Gourmet Gifts at the Carolina Sauce Company! Our wide selection of gift sets available from our partners includes imported pastas, vinegars and oils from Italy, fine European cheeses, American BBQ and grilling gifts, and international selections for serving authentic Spanish tapas and savory Italian antipasto, Alpine fondue, and more. Our gourmet gift sets offer something for every taste and budget--we even have a Gluten-Free Gift Set with hard-to-find, good-tasting gluten-free products, and a surprisingly affordable Travel Spice Kit with 15 different spices and herbs packed in a convenient travel case, the perfect remedy to bland food on the road.

The featured gift sets are just a small sampling of what we have in the works, however. Make sure to bookmark our Gourmet Gifts page and check this blog regularly because we'll soon have exquisite gift baskets and gift boxes, scrumptious baking and dessert gifts, exotic spices and sea salt, fine teas and coffee, seasonal favorites like cider and cocoa, and even premium gourmet gifts like Russian and domestic caviar. We'll also be expanding our selection of cheeses, meats, pantry staples, imported specialties, sauces and condiments, as well as re-stocking old favorites from North Carolina in our warehouse.

Zestfully yours,
Gloria


Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Orzo with Clams, Summer Vegetables & Almonds

I came up with this recipe as a mildly-seasoned but tasty and nourishing dish for Greg, who has been under the weather this week. I jazzed up my serving with a light sprinkling of red pepper flakes, and I would have dressed it up with fresh herbs had I had any on hand. You can make this with regular orzo pasta although I used whole-wheat orzo. You can substitute chicken broth for the white wine, if you prefer. You can also use zucchini or other tender summer squash in place of the yellow squash.

Ingredients
1/4 cup slivered almonds
2 Tbs olive oil
1 Tbs butter or bacon grease
1/3 cup diced onion
2 or 3 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup diced yellow squash
1/3 cup diced red or orange sweet peppers
1/3 cup diced carrot
3/4 cup coarsely chopped baby portobello mushrooms
1/4 cup frozen sweet peas
1 can (8 to 10 oz) clams, drained, liquid reserved
1/4 cup white wine
1/2 tsp dried thyme
1/2 tsp dried marjoram
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
2 Tbs shredded parmesan cheese
8 oz orzo pasta

Toast the almonds over medium-low heat in a small pan, then set aside. Heat the oil and butter or bacon grease in a large, deep skillet. Saute the onion until it starts to soften, then add the garlic, squash, carrots and sweet peppers. Saute over medium heat until softened. While this cooks, begin cooking the orzo according to package directions. Once the veggies have softened, stir in the mushrooms and wine. Simmer over medium-low heat, adding some of the reserved clam liquid to keep the veggies moist as the mushrooms soften. When the orzo is ready, drain well and stir the orzo into the skillet. Season with herbs and black pepper to taste. Stir in the sweet peas and cook until heated through, adding more of the reserved clam liquid as needed to keep everything moist. When peas are heated through, stir in the clams and slivered almonds and cook for a few minutes until heated through, stirring occasionally. Stir in the parmesan cheese until just melting. Serve hot.

Zestfully yours,
Gloria
Carolina Sauce Company


Tuesday, August 16, 2011

New Super-Hot Hot Sauce: Mongoose Hot Sauce

From the makers of the ultra-hot Black Mamba Hot Sauce comes this even hotter creation, Mongoose Hot Sauce. In nature, even the deadliest, most venomous snake is no match for the fierce mongoose. The same is true with hot sauces: Made with the exotic and fiery Fatalii pepper plus a hefty portion of incendiary Bhut or Naga Jolokia ghost peppers, Mongoose Extreme Hot Sauce is unforgiving and unrelenting from the first bite to the last--and then some. If you can't find anything hot enough to satisfy your yearn for the burn, give the Mongoose a try and you'll probably have met your match. And if you're a regular consumer of super-hot hot sauces but are often disappointed with their general lack of flavor--or worse yet, their unpleasant aftertaste when spiked with capsaiacin extract--Mongoose Hot Sauce will be a welcome addition to your food. This ultra-hot tastes like the peppers it's made from, and it contains no artificial ingredients or extracts.

As with all extreme hot sauces, exercise caution when playing with the Mongoose as it has a vicious bite. Keep away from children and pets, avoid contact with eyes and other sensitive areas, and begin with a single drop at a time to gauge your tolerance.

Mongoose Hot Sauce is currently on sale at the Carolina Sauce Company online store.

Zestfully yours,
Gloria


Monday, August 15, 2011

Tortilla Gallega (Cuban-Style Spanish Omelet)

'La espaƱola' This traditional Cuban breakfast dish can trace its origins to the region of Galicia in Spain. Unlike French-style omelets, Cuban-Spanish omelets are more thoroughly cooked and somewhat drier, like the traditional tortas of Spain. Tortilla Gallega makes a hearty breakfast for one, or can be split between two diners.

Ingredients
3 eggs, well beaten
1 red potato
1 small onion
1 small bell pepper
1 small chorizo, thinly sliced
Spanish olive oil, for frying

Slice the potato into thin rounds and the onion into thin rings. Core and halve the bell pepper, then slice into thin strips. Saute the potato and onion rings in olive oil until softened. Add the pepper strips and saute until softened. Remove vegetables from saute pan and set aside. Add beaten eggs to skillet and just as the eggs start to set spoon the vegetables over half of the eggs, then add sliced chorizo to taste over the vegetables. Use a rubber spatula to carefully fold the uncovered half of the omelet over the vegetables and meat, and cook over medium heat until the omelet is thoroughly cooked through. The eggs should be completely set so that they're not runny at all and the interior is fully cooked. Remove the omelet from heat and serve.

Zestfully yours,
Gloria


Sunday, August 14, 2011

Cheesecake in a Jar

If you're crazy about cheesecake, I have good news: You can now enjoy the rich, sweet/tangy flavor of cheesecake anytime, no fork necessary, thanks to Cheesecake In A Jar by The Creative Chef! This is the newest addition to our collection of sweet snacks and treats at the Carolina Sauce Company. Made with simple, all-natural ingredients, Cheesecake in a Jar is a decadently delicious gourmet dessert dip for fruit, pound cake cubes, graham crackers, cookies and even chocolate. You can also spoon some Cheesecake in a Jar over biscuits, pancakes, waffles, ice cream, bread pudding, fruit cobbler, cake, oatmeal and anything else you think would benefit from some creamy goodness.

Cheesecake in a Jar is currently on sale at the Carolina Sauces online store, so treat yourself to a jar (or two) today.

Zestfully yours,
Gloria


Saturday, August 13, 2011

Spicy Garlic Hummus

hummus Homemade hummus is very easy to make and tastes much better than any store-bought hummus. This zesty version uses your choice of ground pepper, and you control how spicy to make it by adjusting the amount of pepper to your taste. If you don't have a food processor, you can use a blender.

Ingredients
2 garlic cloves
1 can (14 to 15 oz) chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1/4 cup tahini
2 Tbs fresh-squeezed lime or lemon juice
1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
pinch to 1/4 tsp (to taste) your choice of ground pepper: black/white blend, red, cayenne, chipotle, habanero, dried Jalapeno Powder, etc.
salt to taste
Optional garnishes: Chopped parsley, paprika, extra virgin olive oil, Red Chile Pepper Infused Olive Oil

Process the garlic in a food processor or blender until finely minced. Add the drained chickpeas, tahini, lime or lemon juice, olive oil and pepper. Process to desired consistency - if too thick, drizzle in a little more oil or even a little water. Taste for balance and add salt if desired (or more citrus, tahini or pepper, to taste). Spoon into serving bowl, then garnish with a sprinkling of parsley, paprika and/or a drizzle of olive oil if desired. Enjoy with pita wedges, chips, raw veggies, crackers or other dippables.

Zestfully yours,
Gloria


Friday, August 12, 2011

Heartbreaking Dawn's Hot Sauces

We're pleased to announce the addition of three new hot sauces to the offerings at the Carolina Sauce Company. All of these hot sauces skillfully blend fiery hot peppers with unique and creative all-natural ingredients to produce award-winning results.

Heartbreaking Dawn’s 1498 Trinidad Scorpion Pepper Sauce features the rare Trinidad scorpion pepper together with scotch bonnet peppers in a traditional Caribbean base of carrots and cider vinegar for a burst of brash heat that will please any serious fan of fiery foods. But what really makes this hot sauce stand out from others is the inspired addition of apricot and blueberries to complement the subtle floral notes of the scorpion pepper. Don't be fooled into thinking that this is some "sissy" hot sauce, however: The heat level is as big and bold as the flavors are deliciously intriguing. Heartbreaking Dawn's 1498 Hot Sauce pairs especially well with grilled shrimp, tropical fish dishes, roast pork and chicken.

Heartbreaking Dawn's 1542 Chocolate Habanero Sauce is another incendiary work of culinary art. This super-hot and super-tasting hot sauce gets its firepower from the chocolate habanero pepper (also called the Congo pepper), which some consider to be the hottest habanero pepper variety on the planet. Once again Heartbreaking Dawn's begins with a traditional Caribbean vinegar-carrot base but enhances the flavor palette by adding savory cumin, pungent garlic and a sprinkling of brown sugar for balance. Heartbreaking Dawn's 1542 Chocolate Habanero Sauce will complement any hearty food that can stand up to significant pepper heat: Grilled and roast meats of all types are a natural choice, as well as robust beans and rice, and even hamburgers and chili.

If the preceding two hot sauces aren't hot enough for you, then Heartbreaking Dawn’s 1841 Ghost Pepper Sauce should do the trick. Made with the Bhut jolokia or Ghost Pepper, which is currently recognized as the world's hottest hot pepper, this ultra-hot sauce is not for sensitive tongues, weak stomachs or delicate hearts. To borrow an ad slogan, a little dab will do ya when using this hot sauce. Unlike other jolokia hot sauces that are all about the heat, however, Heartbreaking Dawn’s Ghost Pepper Hot Sauce pleases the palate with its surprising blend of pears and apples to give it a subtly sweet flavor with a hint of fruit. This super-hot hot sauce goes well with ribs, burgers, kabobs, subs and sandwiches, and on anything else that you're brave enough to eat it on.

All three flavors of Heartbreaking Dawn's hot sauces are currently on sale at the Carolina Sauces online store.

Zestfully yours,
Gloria


Thursday, August 11, 2011

How to Season a Cast Iron Skillet

cast iron skillet I've been using my trusty old cast iron skillets more frequently these days and suggesting cast-iron cookware for recipes I've been posting, so I thought it might be helpful to post a primer on how to season a cast iron skillet. If you already have an old, well-worn and well-seasoned skillet that's been in your family for a couple of generations or longer, you're very lucky. But if you're new to the wonderful world of cast iron cookery and have a new skillet--or if you have a little-used one that's been developing rust or doesn't yet have a nice, black non-stick seasoned cooking surface--the following steps will help you properly season and care for your cast iron skillet. Even if your new skillet was labeled "pre-seasoned," it's a good idea to follow these seasoning steps before you use it.

If seasoning a brand-new cast iron skillet, first make sure it's perfectly clean: Remove any stickers or labels and wash with soap and water using a soft scrub pad to eliminate any glue or residue from stickers. Completely dry the skillet using a clean dish towel. I like to heat the clean skillet on the stove for a few minutes to evaporate any remaining moisture.

Now comes the fun part. Preheat your oven to at least 350°F (some folks recommend an even hotter oven). While the oven is warming up, tear off a piece from a clean brown paper bag or use a paper towel to rub a generous coat of grease onto the inside of the skillet, completely covering the interior including up the sides. Although some modern seasoning tips recommend using vegetable oil or shortening, old-timers swear by bacon grease or lard as the best way to season a cast iron skillet because vegetable oil or shortening can sometimes leave a "tacky" or sticky surface. I personally haven't had any problems with vegetable shortening and usually use that or bacon grease, depending on what I have on hand.

After you've applied a nice coat of grease and wiped off any excess globs, place the skillet upside down on the top oven rack and place a cookie sheet on a lower rack beneath the skillet to catch any drippings. Let the greased skillet bake in the hot oven for an hour. Don't worry if it smokes or smells like smoke, as that's normal. After an hour, turn off the oven and very carefully remove the hot skillet using thermal oven mitts. Let the skillet cool on top of the stove or other heat-proof surface. With this initial seasoning procedure the skillet is now ready to use, but understand that it will take regular use over time to build up the seasoning layer to the point where you have a truly nonstick surface on which you can fry an egg without additional oil or grease. Feel free to repeat this seasoning procedure from time to time to improve the skillet's seasoning.

Cleaning a cast-iron skillet with coarse sea salt There's some disagreement on whether water should ever be used in cleaning a cast iron skillet. For traditional, non-water cleaning, simply sprinkle a fair amount of Kosher salt or coarse-ground cornmeal into the skillet, dip a paper towel, clean cloth or piece of brown paper bag into some oil or grease, and scrub the inside of the skillet until all food residue comes off. The mildly abrasive paste created from the gritty texture of the coarse salt or cornmeal plus the grease will not harm seasoning layer and will clean the skillet nicely. After scrubbing it clean, wipe the skillet out thoroughly and use a clean cloth or paper to wipe a thin coat of grease or oil over the interior to re-season the skillet.

If you feel you must use water to clean your skillet, make sure you completely dry it and then re-season with grease or oil. NEVER place cold water on a hot iron skillet, as it could instantly crack and be irreparably ruined. NEVER use soap or metallic scrub pads as these will destroy the seasoning layer. Likewise, NEVER wash a cast iron skillet in the dishwasher. I personally prefer the old-fashioned non-water cleaning method, although I admit to having used water occasionally to help remove some hard-baked food residue. Regardless of which cleaning method I use on my cast-iron cookware, I always re-apply a thin layer of grease after each use and cleaning.

If you discover some spots of rust in your cast-iron cookware, gently rub with a soap-free steel wool pad, then wash and re-season as if it were brand-new.

One final tip: When cooking in a cast iron skillet, stick to wood or heat-resistant plastic utensils because metal can damage it.

Zestfully yours,
Gloria
Carolina Sauce Company


Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Wasabi Peanuts are Back!

Happy days are here again for fans of wasabi-coated peanuts: They're back in stock at the Carolina Sauce Company, and they're currently on sale! Wasabi Bombs are plump peanuts enveloped in a crunchy coating made from real wasabi mustard and rice cracker flour. Packing a powerful sinus-clearing wasabi punch, Wasabi Bombs are a fun and tasty snack you can enjoy whenever you're craving something zesty that won't burn out your mouth, unlike chili-pepper snacks that leave your tongue on fire. Like a lively but well-mannered house-guest, these wasabi-coated peanuts confidently announce their presence upon first bite but don't overstay their welcome, allowing your taste buds to entertain other foods or simply rest a little before you pop the next Wasabi Bomb in your mouth. And unlike most commercial wasabi snacks found at supermarkets, Wasabi Bombs are all-natural and don't use artificial colors or flavors.

If you enjoy the zippy kick of wasabi with sushi or wasabi-coated peas, or if you're looking for a high-protein low-carb spicy snack, give our new Wasabi Bombs peanuts a try. I'll bet your first can won't be your last....

Zestfully yours,
Gloria


Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Garlic-Chipotle Mashed Potatoes

Garlic Mashed Potatoes Here's my southwestern-inspired version of garlic mashed potatoes. The chipotle adds a hearty spicy-smoky flavor that makes this the perfect side dish for roast pork, grilled steaks and other robust main courses. I prefer to use unpeeled potatoes because the skin adds a subtle earthiness and rustic texture that I enjoy in my mashed potatoes. But if you prefer your mashed potatoes to be smoother and creamier, feel free to peel and fully mash the potatoes. You can also reduce the milk to a 1/2 cup and add 1/4 cup half-and-half or even heavy cream for a richer result.

Ingredients
2 lbs russet potatoes, washed well to remove any dirt
3/4 cup milk, heated
3 Tbs olive oil
4 cloves roasted garlic, minced
2 chipotle chiles in adobo, minced
Salt, pepper to taste

Peel the potatoes if desired. Cube the potatoes and place in a large pot. Fill the pot with water, at least an inch or two above the top of the potatoes. Bring to a boil and cook until the potatoes are soft, about half an hour. Drain into a colander, reserving just a little of the potato water. Transfer the potatoes into a large bowl. Add the hot milk, olive oil, garlic and chipotles. Mash until potatoes reach desired consistency and all ingredients are well combined--add some of the reserved potato liquid if the consistency seems too dry. Taste for balance and season with salt and pepper if desired.

Zestfully yours,
Gloria
Carolina Sauce Company


Monday, August 8, 2011

Lots of New Hot & Spicy Snacks!

Our warehouse continues to add new products, and the latest arrivals are a whole slew of new hot, spicy, and fiery snacks and dips! Here's a sampling of what's already available:

Deano's Cheddar Jalapeno Chips: It was love at first bite for me with this zesty, spicy snack. Deano's uses real, fresh jalapeno peppers and thinly slices them like potato chips are sliced, then cooks them in canola oil to a crispy crunch and coats them in real cheddar cheese. The result is astoundingly delicious, with the satisfying crunch of traditional chips plus the medium-hot kick of jalapenos and a cheesy cheddar finish. Deano's also makes Ranch Jalapeno Chips, with a tangy Ranch dressing coating. Anyone who enjoys hot & spicy snacks is sure to love either variety. If you're cutting back on carbs and miss snacking on spicy, crunchy snacks, Deano's jalapeno chips are for you. If you are looking for a gluten-free snack or chip, Deano's jalapeno chips are for you. If you are avoiding hydrogenated or partially-hydrogenated oils, trans-fat or cholesterol, Deano's jalapeno chips are for you.

Blair's Death Beef Jerky: Who knew dried beef could be so hot? The folks at Blair's--infamous for their fiery Blair's Death Hot Sauce line--have come out with two peppery-hot beef jerky snacks. The Original version is seasoned with Blair's Original Death Sauce, as the name would indicate, and is plenty hot. But if crave a more intense heat level, you'll probably want to try Blair's XXX Sudden Death Beef Jerky, made with the ultra-hot Sudden Death Hot Sauce. Either way, make sure you have plenty of your favorite beverage on hand to quench the fire. Blair's Death Beef Jerky is the ideal fiery snack for chileheads on a low carb diet.

Crazy Jerry's Hot N' Chili Cheese Dip: Made with Monterrey Jack and Cheddar cheeses with fiery jalapenos and roasted chile peppers, this spicy cheese dip is great with chips, pretzels, raw veggies and other "dippables." Some folks even like spooning it over chili dogs and burgers, and it's a natural on nachos. A must-have spicy snack for your next party or get-together.

Blair's Death Rain Habanero Potato Chips: Can't find chips that are hot enough for you? You obviously haven't yet tried Blair's Death Rain Habanero Potato Chips. These super-hot kettle-cooked potato chips are not only fiery, they're also quite tasty. Seasoned with natural spices and no artificial ingredients, Blair's Habanero Potato Chips are far superior to mass-produced grocery store chips in flavor and fire. Blair's also makes cheesy Cheddar Potato Chips and tangy Buffalo Wing Potato Chips, both of which are medium hot; and smoky-spicy Chipotle Potato Chips.

All of our spicy snacks and dips are currently on sale at the Carolina Sauce Company online store. To see our entire selection, make sure to visit our recently-updated and expanded Hot and Fiery Snacks page. And stay tuned to this blog as we continue to announce new arrivals and the return of old favorites!

Zestfully yours,
Gloria


Saturday, August 6, 2011

Gloria's Quimbombo (Cuban Okra with Plantains)

Quimbombo is a traditional Afro-Cuban stew made with okra and plantains, and seasoned with pork. Some cooks will use ham and others prefer bacon or fatback, and some heartier recipes will even add ground pork or chorizo, a highly-seasoned Spanish sausage. When properly prepared, the okra is not slimy and the flavors of this stew are rich and satisfying, like any good comfort food. When made the old-fashioned way, the plantains are boiled separately, then mashed and rolled into little balls called "fufu" and added during the final few minutes of cooking. To save time and effort, however, I simply peeled and cubed the raw plantain and cooked it together with the okra. Also not traditional is the red jalapeno pepper that I use in my version for a touch of zesty spice without making the dish "hot" (red ripe jalapenos are mellower than green jalapenos). When it was time to serve dinner, I stuck with tradition and served the quimbombo over white rice.

Make sure to use half-ripe plantains, which are yellow with some black splotches. Mostly-black plantains are fully ripe and too sweet for this dish. Green plantains are unripe and too tough. For easy peeling, I trim the ends off the plantains and then cut just through the skin lengthwise with a sharp knife. The skin should then pull off easily in one or two large pieces, while the plantain flesh remains intact. I start cooking the white rice a few minutes before adding the okra and plantains to the pot, so that the rice will be ready when the quimbombo is ready to serve. This recipe makes 4 to 6 generous servings, and you can halve it to make less--or make the big batch and enjoy leftovers.

Ingredients
2 lbs okra
1 lemon or lime
4 thick slices of bacon
1 large bay leaf or 2-3 small
2 cloves
1 onion, diced
3 to 4 cloves garlic, minced
1 green bell pepper, diced
Optional: 1 red jalapeno, de-seeded and minced
1 can (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes, undrained
2 cups beef or chicken broth
2 half-ripe plantains
Salt & pepper to taste
Cooked white rice for serving

Cook the bacon in a large skillet until crispy, then remove from skillet onto a paper towel covered plate to drain and cool, reserving up to 4 Tbs of the bacon drippings. While the bacon is cooking, wash the okra and trim the ends. Slice into 1/4" rounds, place in a bowl and cover with water, then squeeze in the juice of one lemon or lime and stir to mix. Let the okra soak while you continue with the recipe - this soaking process will prevent the okra from becoming slimy in the finished dish.

Add the bacon drippings, bay leaf and cloves to a large pot and cook over medium heat for a couple of minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in the onions, garlic and pepper, and saute until tender (if too dry, you can drizzle in a little olive oil or add a dab of butter). While this is cooking, start the rice and peel & cube the plantains. When the vegetables are tender, drain the okra in a colander and add the okra to the pot (don't worry if you see "slime" draining from the colander--the cooked okra will not be slimy). Stir to combine, then stir in the broth. Bring to a gentle boil, add the cubed plantains and crumble in the bacon. Stir to combine, cover and reduce heat to a simmer. Cook for about 20 minutes or until the okra is tender. Taste and add salt/pepper if desired. Serve over cooked white rice.

Zestfully yours,
Gloria


Friday, August 5, 2011

Jolokia 10 Mustard

Rarely does an extremely hot sauce or condiment also rate highly for excellent flavor. The new Jolokia 10 Mustard is that rare exception, masterfully blending two of the hottest peppers on the planet with premium yellow mustard for a result that is tantalizingly delicious while burning the bejeezus out of you.

Unlike other hot mustards that rely on wasabi or horseradish for a sinus-clear kick, or on funky-tasting capsaicin extracts to artificially ratchet up the heat, Jolokia 10 Mustard does it the old-fashioned way with simple, natural ingredients. As you've probably figured from the name, the Naga (Bhut) Jolokia Pepper--recently recognized as the world's hottest hot pepper--plays a major role in this fiery mustard, and it's paired with ultra-hot Red Savina habanero peppers for additional dimensions of peppery flavor and fire. Because the base mustard used is a high-quality product, and no artificial heat-boosters have been added, your first taste will present the familiar flavor of a well-made yellow mustard. But within a few seconds the intense heat will announce its presence, and will build steadily with each bite until it is searingly hot. Yes, you might cry, but you'll be shedding tears of pleasure as well as pain as you discover what a well-made ultra-hot mustard should taste like!

If you are serious about your fiery foods, Jolokia 10 Mustard is a must for your table. Use it like you would any mustard, albeit judiciously and with respect. Jolokia 10 Mustard is perfect for robust grilled fare like sausages, bratwurst and kielbasa, on hot dogs and burgers, as a wet-rub for pork loin and chops, and as a spicy addition to your favorite deviled eggs or potato salad recipe. If you follow a low-carb or no-sugar diet, you'll be glad to know that this mustard has no sugar added. It's also very low sodium, in case you're watching your sodium intake. Normally retailing for $10 a jar, it's currently on sale online at the Carolina Sauce Company where you can now buy Jolokia 10 mustard for only $8.95 a jar!

Zestfully yours,
Gloria


Thursday, August 4, 2011

Coastal Crab Cakes

When we're staying near the North Carolina coast while on vacation, we like to stop at our favorite seafood market and pick up their freshly-made crab cakes to cook for dinner. Consisting primarily of succulent chunks of crab rather than fillers, these crab cakes are sublime on their own, although a little dab of crab cake sauce does serve to complement without overwhelming the delicate flavor.

The accompanying photo is from the crab cake dinner I made last weekend at home. I served fried okra on the side with the crab cakes, along with a simple salad of sliced cucumbers, tomato and basil drizzled with balsamic vinegar, extra virgin olive oil, and sprinkled with coarse Kosher salt and freshly-ground black pepper. I must confess that I fried the okra and crab cakes in bacon drippings (blended with some grapeseed oil to raise the smoke point), which of course isn't as healthy as using only oil. However, the okra and salad veggies plus the basil were picked that evening from a friend's garden and were bursting with the flavors of summer as well as peak nutritional value.

Here is a recipe that comes as close as I can get to the mouthwatering crab cakes we enjoy at the Carolina coast.

Ingredients
1 1/2 Tbs butter
1/4 cup minced onion
1/4 cup minced bell pepper
1 lb fresh crabmeat, picked over to remove any shell pieces or cartilage
1/2 cup soft bread crumbs (tear up some bread into small crouton-size pieces)
1 tsp Dijon mustard
2 Tbs mayonnaise
1/4 tsp dried parsley OR 1 tsp finely minced fresh parsley
Dash of hot sauce, such as Texas Pete
Dash of paprika
1 egg
1/2 cup fine bread crumbs
Oil for frying (or 50/50 combination of oil and bacon drippings)

Melt the butter in a large heavy skillet (preferably cast iron), add onion and pepper, saute until softened. Remove from heat, add the crab and soft bread crumbs, stir to combine thoroughly and set aside to cool a little. In a large bowl, whisk together the mustard, mayonnaise, parsley, hot sauce and paprika. When the crab mixture is cool enough to handle, add to the bowl. Using wet hands, incorporate the crab mixture into the ingredients in the bowl, then shape into balls about the size of a golf ball or a little larger for a total of 4 to 6 balls. Use the palm of your hand to gently flatten each ball into a crab cake. Place the crab cakes on a piece of wax paper on a plate or baking sheet, then place in refrigerator to chill for about 15 minutes--this will help the crab cakes hold their shape.

Beat the egg in a shallow bowl, and place the fine bread crumbs on a pie plate or other shallow bowl or plate. After 15 minutes of chilling, remove crab cakes from refrigerator and gently dip on both sides in the egg wash and then dredge in the bread crumbs to coat. Return the crab cakes to the wax paper and refrigerate for at least half an hour. Discard any remaining egg wash or bread crumbs.

When ready to fry the crab cakes, heat about an inch of oil in a large, deep skillet (cast iron works best) to about 370°F. Remove crab cakes from refrigerator and use a spatula to gently lift from the wax paper and place them in the hot oil, being careful not to crowd the skillet--you may need to fry them in batches. Fry until browned on each side, then drain on paper towels and serve plain or with your favorite crab cake sauce, cocktail sauce or tartar sauce.

Zestfully yours,
Gloria


Tuesday, August 2, 2011

New Coupons on the Carolina Sauce Facebook Page!

There are four NEW coupons and special discount offers posted on the Carolina Sauce Company Facebook page, including FREE ground shipping from the Carolina Sauces online store and some of our partners, plus discounts on Bourbon Molasses BBQ Sauce and other yummy items. If you're already a Fan of the Carolina Sauce Company on Facebook, you can access all of the coupons by visiting our Facebook page and clicking on the "Coupons" tab on the left margin to get to the Coupons section.

If you're not already our Fan on Facebook, all you need to do is visit the Carolina Sauce Company Facebook page, click on the "Like" button at the top, and you can then access the coupons by clicking on the Coupons tab.

We'll keep posting more coupons, discounts and special offers, so it pays to "Like" us on Facebook!

Zestfully yours,
Gloria


Monday, August 1, 2011

Top 10 Best-Selling Products at Carolina Sauce for July

July was a "short" month for us because of our Grand Re-Opening in the latter half of the month. As a result, it was much faster to review the numbers and compile our list of the top ten best-selling products for July at the Carolina Sauce Company. Along with several of our regular best-selling hot sauces, we're excited to see that one of the items from our brand new Meats and Cheeses selection made the cut! Without further ado, here's the list:

1. Busha Browne's Pukka Hot Pepper Sauce was our best-selling hot sauce and product last month. This classic all-purpose table sauce is made in Jamaica in the old colonial tradition and sports fiery heat along with great flavor.

2. Also from Jamaica is our second-best selling product for July, the blazing hot Jamaica Hellfire Doc's Special, a serious hot sauce made from sun-ripened tropical hot peppers and Jamaican spices.

3. Staying with the tropical theme, Matouk's Calypso Hot Sauce from Trinidad & Tobago finished in third place last month. Made with aged pickled scotch bonnet peppers in a traditional mustard base with just a hint of sweetness, this all-purpose hot sauce is spicy-hot and super-tasty.

4. We go back to Jamaica for July's 4th best-selling product, Walkerswood Traditional Jamaican Jerk Seasoning, an intensely aromatic and spicy jerk paste or wet rub that brings authentic Jamaican flavor to meats, chicken, seafood and even in vegetarian dishes.

5. Walkerswood Jerk Marinade delivers the same genuine jerk flavor as the Walkerswood Seasoning, but in a convenient ready-to-use liquid marinade for use on meats, poultry, fish and seafood.

6. Holding on to sixth place for the second consecutive month is Matouk's West Indian Hot Sauce. Not quite as spicy as Matouk's Calypso, Matouk's West Indian adds papaya for natural sweetness and tropical flair. Matouk's West Indian hot sauce is fabulous with fish and seafood, chicken, rice dishes, kabobs and more.

7. After a long absence, Scorned Woman Fiery BBQ Sauce made an impressive return to our list of the top-ten best-selling products, and was the best-selling barbecue sauce in July. This thick, tomato-mustard BBQ sauce is savory-sweet and slightly smoky but delivers a powerful habanero pepper wallop.

8. The original Bone Suckin' Seasoning Rub was the best-selling North Carolina product last month and 8th overall. Its savory-sweet flavor has just the right touch of sassy spice to complement pork, beef, game, chicken, and anything else you want to season for the grill or smoker.

9. Peppers Zesty Blue Crab Salsa is a spicy-hot salsa that adds real Maryland blue crab plus zingy horseradish to the traditional salsa blend of tomatoes and peppers. The result is amazingly delicious, with a feisty kick.

10. Rounding out our list of the top 10 best-selling products for July is Parmigiano-Reggiano Parmigiano Reggiano Stravecchio cheese from one of our new partners, OliveNation. This authentic, all-natural aged Parmesan cheese from Italy has been widely acclaimed for its rich flavor and appealing texture. Enjoy it on all your favorite Italian dishes, or paired with walnuts or pears, or even drizzled with balsamic vinegar or honey.

Keep an eye out for the August top-ten list in early September, as I'm expecting big changes because of all the new hot sauces being added to the Carolina Sauces online store as well as the new product offerings (e.g., food-related art, cookbooks, country ham, etc.) at the main Carolina Sauce Company site.


Zestfully yours,
Gloria