Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Easy Pork and Sauerkraut - Crock Pot Recipe

Greg came up with this effortless and easy crockpot recipe for pork with sauerkraut. Start it the evening before and let it cook through the next day until the pork falls apart. Serve with a green salad, a side of potato (mashed, baked, boiled or french-fried) or rice, and a side of apple sauce: I recommend Mullen's Apple Sauce, an old-fashioned, all-natural apple sauce that tastes like apple pie without the crust. Enjoy!

3 lbs pork loin
36 oz sauerkraut (3 bags' worth)
2 apples, peeled, cored & chopped into small pieces
1 bottle beer (regular or dark - we like to use Sam Adams Boston Lager)
Big Daddy’s Superb Herb Seasoning

Place the pork, apples, kraut and beer in the crock pot. Add 4 or 5 healthy shakes (approx. 1 or 2 Tbs or more) of Big Daddy's Superb Herb Seasoning. Cook 4 hours on High, then set the crockpot to Low and continue cooking for about 20 hours or until the pork is falling apart. Stir from time to time towards the end of the cooking time to break up the pork. Serve with a side of applesauce, and your favorite starch such as potatoes or rice.

Zestfully yours,

PS: Mullen's Apple Sauce and Big Daddy's Superb Herb Seasoning are both on sale now at the Carolina Sauce Company!

Monday, March 30, 2009

Thank a Soldier for their Service

Operation Sauce Drop is a non-profit program of the Carolina Sauce Company that sends free gift boxes of hot sauce and BBQ sauce to US troops serving abroad. The mission of Operation Sauce Drop is to deliver a little taste of home to our brave servicemen and women, at no charge to them, to let them know we're thinking of them back home and to say Thank You for their service and their sacrifice. The average cost to purchase (at wholesale, no markup) and ship a gift box of sauce is around $20, and this is made possible by donations from individuals, which are matched 100% by the Carolina Sauce Company. Operation Sauce Drop is also funded through the sale of products donated by manufacturers, where 100% of the purchase price of the product goes straight into the Operation Sauce Drop account - the Carolina Sauce Company does not make a single penny from the sale of these donated products.

To date, Operation Sauce Drop has shipped 498 free gift boxes of sauce to our military personnel stationed abroad. The troops greatly appreciate the gift boxes, as you can see from their thank you notes to donors and the photos on our Operation Sauce Drop Feedback & Photos page. Unfortunately, the program has a waiting list of over 320 troops who have signed up for a free gift box (or a loved one has submitted their name and requested that their serviceman or woman receive a free gift box). We haven't been able to send out any more free gift boxes since early March because Operation Sauce Drop is out of money (we haven't received a donation since early March).

Despite these tough economic times, the Carolina Sauce Company will continue to match 100% of all donations, and to cover all incidental expenses and donate the labor involved in order to keep sending our brave servicemen and women a free gift of zesty sauces to add some flavor – and a taste of home – to their chow. As mentioned above, the average cost to purchase and ship a free gift box of sauce to a deployed soldier is about $20. Because we match all donations, a mere $10 donation is all it takes to say thank you to our troops, and let a soldier know you care. And just $5 gets us halfway to sending a free gift box, which is also a big help. Another way to support Operation Sauce Drop while treating yourself to something delicious is to Shop to Support Operation Sauce Drop, where *the entire price* of the product you purchase for yourself is donated directly to Operation Sauce Drop. Need another reason to support Operation Sauce Drop? How about the following thank-you note from the mother of a sailor on the USS San Antonio:

"Hey, Gloria, I just wanted to let you know the box of hot sauce arrived safely and on Valentine's Day, no less! Great timing, huh? Here is the email I got from Nicholas [her son] this morning:

I got some hot sauces in the mail today? Lol did you get me some? They said there was no charge, but it had your email on it… lol habenero? :D that’s gonna be some spicy meatballs… Thank you mom J.

That boy loves his hot sauce. I told him that Habanero is Spanish for " you laugh while my hair is on fire" so that one should be a good one. Thank you again for going to so much effort to send the box to him. He loves getting mail and he needed to be cheered up a little. One of his friends was lost at sea during a training accident on February 4th. This was the first email since that happened in which he sounded like he was feeling better. Your company is doing a really nice thing by sending hot sauce to the military. They need our support more that you can imagine.

Thanks again,

Please consider making a donation to Operation Sauce Drop, or ordering yourself some delicious Pepper Dog Salsas and Dry Rub and knowing that the entire purchase price will go towards thanking a soldier with a free gift box of sauce.

Zestfully yours,

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Thomas Marinade

Back in the old days, the word "marinade" wasn't usually used by regular folks and country cooks -- but that doesn't mean that they didn't know about the benefits (and delicious results!) of soaking a piece of meat in a blend of vinegar or lemon juice to tenderize and get rid of any "gamey" off-flavors, oil to keep the meat moist while it cooks, and herbs and spices that enhance the meat's natural flavors. As any oldtimer will tell you, they knew about marinades -- they just called them "soaks" instead.

Thomas Marinade, from Thomas Gourmet Foods in Greensboro, NC, is an old-fashioned "soak" or marinade that's made with all-natural ingredients, just like grandma used to make. The secret blend of herbs and spices is perfectly balanced to enhance, rather than overpower, the natural flavors of your meat or anything else you marinade in Thomas Marinade. Soy sauce is used not only because of its complementary flavors, but also because it helps to tenderize even the toughest cut of meat. The cider vinegar also helps in the same way, and because it can penetrate the meat it helps to infuse it with the seasonings in this marinade. And canola oil helps to keep your meat or poultry tender by sealing in the natural juices while you grill, broil, bake or roast after marinading.

Thomas Marinade is excellent for all sorts of meat, pork and poultry, and is especially good for tenderizing venison, flank steaks, and roasts. It's also a wonderful addition to raw ground beef or ground venison when you're making burgers, and you can drizzle it over (or brush it on) fish and other seafood just before cooking. I love putting some raw veggies in a baggie and then pouring some Thomas Marinade in, shaking the sealed baggie to coat the veggies evenly, and then grilling or broiling the veggies. This is especially good with sliced onions and peppers, raw broccoli florets or spears, sliced mushrooms and summer squash like zucchini or yellow squash. Just make sure you shake the bottle first -- like any high-quality, all-natural vinaigrette or oil/vinegar marinade, Thomas Sauce naturally separates since it doesn't contain any artificial emulsifiers.

If you're looking for an all-purpose old-fashioned marinade or "soak" to tenderize and complement your food without overpowering or masking its natural flavors, then Thomas Marinade is for you. And if you're watching your carbs, you'll be thrilled to know that Thomas Marinade is a low carb marinade, with only 1 carb per tablespoon. Get it today from the Carolina Sauce Company online store, and enjoy a taste of the good ol' days.

Zestfully yours,

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Race City Sauce Works Bootleggers Bounty Whisky Barrel Wing Sauce

Race City Sauce Works is a small gourmet sauce manufacturer based in the heart of North Carolina's NASCAR country. This up-and-coming producer of high-quality sauces is making quite a name for itself with its racing-themed sauces, some of which are flavored with a splash of bourbon (hence the references to bootleggers, moonshine, and whisky in their sauce names), and all of which are made with all-natural ingredients and locally grown chile peppers. One of my favorite products they offer is called Race City Sauce Works Bootleggers Bounty Whisky Barrel Wing Sauce. Made with eight different kinds of chile peppers which are smoked for a richer, more robust flavor, plus their trademark splash of bourbon, and a buttery base that's laced with pungent garlic and savory onion, Bootleggers Bounty Wing Sauce delivers a glorious harmony of smokiness, subtle sweetness, creamy richness and medium-hot peppery heat.

The obvious use for this wing sauce is chicken wings: breaded or unbreaded, fried, broiled, baked or grilled. But I also like to use Race City Sauce Works Bootleggers Bounty Whisky Barrel Wing Sauce as a dipping sauce for fried appetizers like onion rings, fries, and jalapeno poppers. I've even been known to pour it on burgers in place of ketchup, and it ain't half-bad as a steak sauce, either! Although the manufacturer hasn't yet updated their labels to show the nutritional info, they were kind enough to provide it to us and we've posted it on the Race City Sauce Works Bootleggers Bounty Whisky Barrel Wing Sauce page for our customers. As you'll see, this wing sauce is healthy as well as delicious, with all-natural ingredients, only 1.5 grams of fat and 100mg of sodium per serving, and zero carbs. So now you can have your hot wings, and eat them guilt-free! Race City Sauce Works Bootleggers Bounty Whisky Barrel Wing Sauce is currently on sale at the Carolina Sauce Company.

Zestfully yours,

Friday, March 27, 2009

Thomas Gourmet Foods Chutneys

Chutneys are luxuriously exotic but food-friendly and approachable fruit-based condiments that are spoonably thick like jam, intriguingly spiced, and provide a richly-flavored counterpoint to meats, poultry and seafood. Often associated with Indian and Caribbean cuisine, where chutneys are often intensely flavored and densely packed with chunks of fruits and vegetables, chutneys are also used in the cuisine of the American South, where they are mellower in flavor, playing a gentler complementary role to main dishes like roast pork, chicken or lamb.

True to its mission of making delicious sauces and condiments that spark the imagination, Thomas Gourmet Foods has created a line of North Carolina chutneys that blend farm-fresh Southern fruits with just enough exotic spice to bring out the best in your food. Their Apple Chutney starts with sweet ripe apples and combines them with refreshingly zippy ginger, sweet raisins and tart lime juice for a zestily sweet-savory accompaniment for pork, beef or chicken, either as a table condiment or a glaze. It also pairs nicely with cheese and crackers, and serves as a grown-up substitute for jelly or jam on your bagel or croissant. For folks craving more of an old-fashioned Southern flavor, Thomas Gourmet Foods Green Tomato Chutney is a blast from the past. This tasty chutney begins with naturally tart green tomatoes and combines them with just enough onions, apples and golden raisins for a tangy, well-balanced savory condiment that's not too sweet. I like to pair this green tomato chutney with hamburgers and other robust meats, grilled tuna steaks, and even with omelets, or cream cheese and crackers.

If you enjoy Indian food and curry dishes, you'll love Thomas Gourment Foods Mango Chutney. Similar to traditional Indian chutneys but with a more delicate flavor for more universal appeal, this mango chutney is made with sweet mangoes and raisins plus fresh ginger and pungent garlic to temper the sweetness. Of course, you can use this mango chutney with curry dishes, but it's also a fantastic accent for simple seafood, poultry and meat dishes, and it makes a delicious condiment for sandwiches and burgers. If a sweeter, more jam-like chutney is your preference, then the Peach Chutney from Thomas Gourmet Foods is for you. Made with sun-ripened southern peaches and just a touch of garlic and exotic spices, this mouthwatering chutney is an ideal table condiment or cooking glaze for chicken, seafood and pork. I like to stir a little peach chutney into chicken salad, or use it instead of tartar sauce or cocktail sauce with fried seafood.

All four flavors of Thomas Gourmet Foods Chutneys are all-natural, made in North Carolina, and on sale at the Carolina Sauce Company.

Zestfully yours,

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Carolina Sauce Co. Closed March 26-30

Newsflash: The Carolina Sauce Company is closed from Thursday, March 26th through Monday, March 30th, while we're up in the Rochester NY area (I'm looking forward to checking out some of the restaurants whose sauces we sell, and hopefully discovering some great new products). Although no one is available to answer the phone or reply to email while we are closed, you can still order online at the Carolina Sauce Company online store while we are closed. Orders received during this time will be processed and shipped in the order received when we re-open for business on Tuesday, March 31st. We'll also be able to return phone calls and reply to emails once we re-open next Tuesday.

Thank you for your patience and understanding.

Zestfully yours,

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Race City Sauce Works Moonshiners Run Whisky Barrel Hot Sauce

North Carolina is much better known for its legendary vinegar-based barbecue sauce than it is for its hot sauce. But that doesn't mean that there aren't any flavor-packed, fiery-hot hot sauces made in North Carolina -- it just means you need to know where to look for them! Luckily, I recently had the opportunity to try a new hot sauce that's made in the heart of North Carolina NASCAR country, with the colorful (and long) name of Race City Sauce Works Moonshiners Run Whisky Barrel Hot Sauce. As you might guess, "Race City Sauce Works" is the name of the company that makes this feisty hot sauce. The reference to moonshiners and whisky barrels comes from one of the unique ingredients in this all-natural hot sauce: a splash of bourbon, which adds a deep richness and hints of toasted caramel. Other ingredients in this gourmet hot sauce include a selection of eight different kinds of locally grown chile peppers, which are wood-smoked for an earthy smokiness that complements their layers of fiery spice. All of this is blended with a secret combination of herbs and spices in a tangy tomato and vinegar base, with a pinch of brown sugar and a touch of raisins and NC sweet potatoes for a subtle sweetness that rounds out any harsh edges without turning this robust hot sauce into a "sweet" hot sauce.

You can really taste the quality ingredients and the care that goes into making Race City Sauce Works Moonshiners Run Whisky Barrel Hot Sauce. Unlike thin, vinegary grocery store hot sauces, Moonshiners Run Whisky Barrel Hot Sauce has substance to its body, so that it will stick to your food instead of just running off it or making your sandwich bread or hamburger bun soggy. The heat level is a peppery medium-hot that builds to a nice fiery level without ever scorching or hurting, which means you can still taste the flavors in the sauce (and in your food) even after several bites. In short, this is a food-friendly hot sauce that you can use on just about anything except maybe dessert. And if you're trying to eat healthy, you'll be glad to know that this hot sauce is very low sodium and also low carb (although the manufacturer doesn't yet have the nutritional info on his labels, he was kind enough to send us the information so that we could post it on our Race City Sauce Works Moonshiners Run Whisky Barrel Hot Sauce product page). Treat yourself to a bottle today, while it's on sale at the Carolina Sauce Company online store!

Zestfully yours,

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Thomas Gourmet Crab Cake Sauce

The good folks at Thomas Gourmet Foods in Greensboro, North Carolina have been making delicious sauces and condiments for many years, and their latest is a real winner. Thomas Gourmet Crab Cake Sauce is THE sauce that you want to spoon onto your crabcakes -- but this velvety-rich, full-bodied and savory sauce is for oh, so much more! If you enjoy softshell crabs -- either in a sandwich or served on their own, breaded and fried or sauteed -- then Thomas Gourmet Crab Cake Sauce is the perfect accompaniment. Likewise with fried fish or shrimp, and even grilled or broiled seafood. Kids absolutely love dipping fish sticks, chicken nuggets, tater tots and french fries in this tasty condiment, and adults love the subtle layers of flavor that it imparts.

Lately, I've been using Thomas Crab Cake Sauce in place of mayonnaise in my sandwiches and wraps. One of my favorite lunch meals is a wrap made with imitation crabmeat, thinly sliced onions & pickles, slivers of oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, and a few leaves of baby spinach all wrapped up in a multigrain flatbread wrap that's been slathered with Thomas Gourmet Crab Cake Sauce. This past weekend, Greg made us some killer BLT's that used the Crab Cake Sauce instead of mayonnaise, and they were heavenly. This sauce is so versatile -- and so delicious -- that you can substitute it for mayo in your potato salad, chicken salad, tuna salad, slaw, and other prepared salads. It can even be used in place of hollandaise for a change of pace, and as a dip for carrot sticks, celery and other raw vegetables. It also has zero trans fat, which is a good thing! Try a jar of Thomas Gourmet Crab Cake Sauce while it's on sale at the Carolina Sauce Company, but be careful: This baby's addictive!

Zestfully yours,

PS: Thomas Gourmet Foods also makes an old-fashioned, homestyle Tartar Sauce, and a bold and zesty Cocktail Sauce, both of which are out of this world, and also on sale!

Monday, March 23, 2009

Carolina Sauce Company Eastern NC BBQ Sauce

Eastern North Carolina barbecue sauce is famous for its thin (not thick), tart vinegar base and spicy, peppery tang. Used primarily on pulled pork barbecue (a North Carolina delicacy that's unlike any other kind of BBQ, with the sauce added after the pork is smoked and then pulled off the bone), a good eastern NC barbecue sauce can also be used as a marinade for chicken and meat, and even as a table sauce to splash on collards, hushpuppies, french fries, and fried fish. After much searching and sauce-tasting, I'm pleased to announce that I've finally found an authentic eastern NC barbecue sauce that's worthy of bearing the Carolina Sauce Company name: our very own Carolina Sauce Company Eastern NC Barbecue Sauce!

Hand-made and hand-bottled in the little eastern town of Nashville, NC using an old family recipe, Carolina Sauce Company Eastern NC BBQ Sauce is the real deal, made with the traditional vinegar base that's spiced with just enough red pepper for a pleasant tang that will please without "biting" more sensitive palates. What makes our eastern NC barbeque sauce stand out is that there's just a touch of apples and tomato to smooth out the tartness of the vinegar but without thickening the sauce or turning it into a "sweet" sauce. We have both a Mild eastern NC BBQ Sauce that's great for the whole family, and a Hot eastern NC barbecue sauce that adds a heftier dose of red peppers for folks who prefer their BBQ with a fiery kick. Ideal for traditional pulled pork barbecue, Carolina Sauce Company Eastern NC BBQ Sauce also tenderizes and adds tangy flavor to meats and poultry when used as a marinade. You can mix it into recipes, too, especially for vinegar-based prepared salads like slaw. I personally love to add it to collard greens, turnip greens and even steamed spinach, and I splash it on all sorts of fried foods including fries, onion rings, hushpuppies, popcorn shrimp, and more.

If you've never made authentic North Carolina pulled pork barbecue, you need to try this sauce, especially since it comes with a FREE recipe flyer with instructions for how to make real NC BBQ. And if you're an old pro at smoking a pork shoulder (or a whole pig) to perfection, you'll be quite pleased at the results the next time you make barbecue and use Carolina Sauce Company Eastern NC Barbecue Sauce. Don't have a smoker, or don't have the time to use it? Don't worry: our free recipe flyer also includes "cheater's instructions" for making NC-style pulled pork barbecue without a smoker that's pretty darn good even though it's not truly authentic. Best of all, both flavors of Carolina Sauce Company Eastern NC Barbecue Sauce are currently on sale at the Carolina Sauce Company!

Zestfully yours,

PS: Our brand-new Carolina Sauce Company Chow Chow Relish is getting rave reviews! It also comes in Mild and Hot, and is a delicious sweet-tangy alternative to slaw or ordinary pickle relish. Stock up now on this old-fashioned condiment that's perfect for cookouts and picnics as well as for homestyle dinners. It's also currently on sale!

Friday, March 20, 2009

George's BBQ Sauce Mini-Bottles!

Newsflash: All three flavors of George's Barbecue Sauce are now available in plastic 8oz mini-bottles! George's BBQ Sauce is an authentic vinegar-based North Carolina barbecue sauce made in the little eastern NC town of Nashville (yes, there's a Nashville in North Carolina). A local favorite since the 1970s, George's Original Barbecue Sauce was recognized last year as "Best in the Carolinas" by the popular cooking magazine "Every Day with Rachael Ray". What distinguishes George's BBQ Sauce from other eastern NC barbeque sauces is that it tempers the tart vinegar base with a touch of apples and tomatoes, for a sauce with that unmistakable eastern NC vinegar tang but just a hint of mellow sweetness. George's Hot BBQ Sauce adds a nice amount of red peppers to the original recipe, for a nice spicy bite. Both the Original and the Hot are ideal for pulled pork barbecue, and also for marinating. For folks who prefer a thicker BBQ sauce that's great with ribs or chicken, George's Special Barbecue Sauce adds lots of tomatoes to the original vinegar base, plus some jalapenos for a fiery kick.

All three varieties of George's Barbecue Sauce are now available in plastic mini-bottles, each holding 8 oz of this delicious North Carolina BBQ sauce. These mini bottles are a great way to try a new flavor, and they're also perfect as a souvenir, party favor, or Christmas stocking stuffer. They're quite popular with folks planning a North Carolina wedding who want to give a taste of NC to each of their guests to take home with them. And regardless of which flavor or bottle size you order, you'll receive FREE recipes when you buy George's Barbecue Sauce at the Carolina Sauce Company online store.

Zestfully yours,

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Best-Selling Steak Sauce & Pasta Sauce

Earlier this year, we added several new gourmet steak sauces and delicious all-natural spaghetti sauces to the Carolina Sauce Company online store. These great new sauces have been enthusiastically received by our customers, and we now have enough data that we can start tracking the top sellers in these product categories. In fact, you can now see our list of the top 9 best-selling steak sauces and pasta sauces as of March 15, 2009. If you're tired of having to "doctor" the same humdrum store-bought spaghetti sauces to give them homemade flavor, or if you're bored with the one-dimensional steak sauces from your grocery store, go ahead and try one or more of these best-selling pasta sauces and steak sauces, many of which are currently on sale. And if you're looking for new hot sauces or BBQ sauces (or other types of sauces and seasonings) that are surefire winners and will please even the most discriminating palate, then you can't go wrong with any of our best-selling sauces and seasonings, conveniently organized by product category. Looking for tasty snacks, either salty or sweet, to serve at your March Madness party? We've got them for you on our newly updated list of best-selling snacks & sweets. Enjoy!

Zestfully yours,

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

George's BBQ Sauce Gift Boxes Back in Stock!

Newsflash: One of our most popular gift items, the George's Barbecue Sauce Gift Box, is back in stock! George's Barbecue Sauce is made in eastern North Carolina in the traditional style, with a tangy vinegar base that's seasoned with a dash of red pepper and naturally sweetened with apples and just a touch of tomato. The Original George's BBQ Sauce is the mildest in terms of spiciness, and was recognized last summer by the popular cooking magazine "Every Day With Rachael Ray" as the best in the Carolinas. George's Hot Barbecue Sauce takes the Original recipe and adds a good deal more red pepper, for a fiery kick. And the unique George's Special Barbecue Sauce has lots more tomato for more body, plus jalapeno peppers for extra heat and tang.

The George's BBQ Sauce Gift Box holds your choice of 3 full-size bottles of George's Barbecue Sauce in any combination (3 of the same flavor, or 2 of one flavor and 1 of another). Just make sure you specify which flavor or flavors you want when you place your order. The box itself is sturdy, made of heavy-weight white cardboard to protect the glass bottles -- and we can giftwrap it for you, too, if you're giving it as a gift. Best of all, the George's BBQ Sauce Gift Box comes with 8 mouthwatering recipes! Order it today from the Carolina Sauce Company online store.

Zestfully yours,

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Irish Soda Bread

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Here's an old recipe for Irish Soda Bread. You need to soak the raisins or currants in whiskey -- preferably Irish whiskey -- for at least an hour before you bake the bread, so plan accordingly (you can soak them overnight if that's easier). Enjoy!

1/2 cup currants OR 3/4 cup raisins
3 Tbs Irish whiskey
3 cups sifted flour (OR 2 cups of sifted white flour and 1 cup of sifted whole wheat flour)
1 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1 Tbs light brown sugar
2 tsp caraway seeds
1/4 cup chopped candied orange peel
1 1/2 cups buttermilk (make sure you have more available just in case)

Soak the currants or raisins in the Irish whiskey for at least one hour. Grease and flour a 10-inch round baking pan. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Sift together the flour, soda, baking powder, salt and brown sugar. Sprinkle in the currants or raisins and the whiskey used in soaking, then stir in the caraway seeds and orange peel. Slowly add the buttermilk while stirring, adding enough to make a light dough (it make take a little less or a little more than 1 1/2 cups of buttermilk). Spread the dough into the greased, floured baking pan and bake at 350 degrees for about 35 minutes - the bread will pull away from the sides of the pan when it's done. Remove from oven and allow to cool about 2 hours before serving.

Zestfully yours,
Carolina Sauce Company

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Tortuga Jamaican Jerk Sauce

All Jamaican jerk sauces are not created equal: Some are sweet and others are savory, some are thinner and better for marinating or pouring on finished dishes, while others are thicker and better used as wet rubs or for spooning into a recipe. Some are intensely aromatic or incendiary in heat level, while others have a mellower balance of flavor and heat. So while the basic blend of spices and herbs that give Jamaican jerk its unmistakeable flavor usually remains the same, there are enough variations (from subtle to robust) on the essence of Jamaican jerk to ensure that there's a jerk sauce for everyone.

If your personal preference is for a savory and tart, less-sweet jerk sauce with rich but well-balanced flavors and a moderately hot level of peppery heat, then Tortuga Jamaican Jerk Sauce is the jerk sauce for you. There's just enough sweetness in this sauce to smooth out any harsh edge from the hot peppers and vinegar. The texture is pourable but with enough body to let you use this tasty sauce as a table sauce and also as a wet rub for marinating. And the vinegar, in addition to adding the pleasant tartness, helps the usual jerk herbs and spices penetrate whatever you are marinating: pork, lamb, beef, goat, game, chicken, fish or seafood. Tortuga Jamaican Jerk Sauce is all-natural and very low sodium, making it a healthy choice as well as a delicious one. And yes, it is made in Jamaica using traditional Jamaican spices and herbs, so the flavor is authentic. In sum, I think Tortuga Jamaican Jerk Sauce is one of the most family-friendly jerk sauces on the market, with just enough spiciness to perk up your tastebuds without hurting them, and plenty of flavor to satisfy jerk purists. If you've never tried Jamaican jerk, this is a great "starter" sauce. And if you are already a fan, Tortuga Jamaican Jerk Sauce will soon become one of your favorites for everyday use. Get it from the Carolina Sauce Company, where it's currently on sale!

Zestfully yours,

PS: The label on the bottle of Tortuga Jamaican Jerk Sauce has an easy and delicious recipe for jerk pork, to help you get started.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Mama Thomas Spaghetti Sauces

It takes time and the freshest ingredients to make really good spaghetti sauce from scratch. Ideally, you should also have your Italian grandma's family recipe. If you don't have the time, or access to high-quality fresh produce, or an Italian grandma, you don't need to sacrifice taste -- you just need Mama Thomas Pasta Sauce and Mama Thomas Marinara. Both of these all-natural sauces are made with the finest 100% natural ingredients beginning with farm-fresh sun-ripened tomatoes and extra virgin olive oil. And yes, both of them are made using delicious recipes from Mama Thomas' Italian friend Salvatore. What's the difference between the Pasta Sauce and the Marinara? The Marinara is an authentic old world Marinara made with chunky tomatoes, extra virgin olive oil and a touch of garlic and spices for a bright, light flavor. In contrast, the Pasta Sauce is "Americanized" in that it is a thicker, smoother sauce (the tomatoes are pureed rather than chunked), with a bolder flavor.

You can use either the Marinara or the Pasta Sauce on spaghetti and all other pastas, and in any Italian recipe. I personally prefer the Marinara sauce with seafood or chicken pasta dishes, with cheese tortellini, as a topping for crostini, or simply over plain spaghetti or steamed veggies. I use the Pasta Sauce in more complex dishes like Eggplant Parmigiana or Chicken Parmigiana, pastas with meat like lasagne, and as a dipping sauce for breadsticks (warm the sauce in your microwave before serving). Both of the Mama Thomas Spaghetti Sauces are all-natural, preservative free, and on sale at the Carolina Sauce Company.

Zestfully yours,

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Thomas Sauce: Two New Varieties!

Thomas Sauce is a tangy tomato and vinegar marinade and BBQ sauce from Greensboro, NC that's based on an old family recipe dating back to the 1930s. The original Thomas Sauce, which comes in 5oz and 14oz bottles, is spiced for full flavor rather than peppery heat, resulting in a versatile food-friendly marinade and sauce that brings out the best in your meats and poultry without overpowering. Because of its pourability, the original Thomas Sauce works nicely as a zesty table sauce as well as on pulled pork barbeque, and in recipes for meatloaf, stews, baked beans, Piedmont slaw, and more. For folks who prefer a sauce with more "body" so that it clings to ribs, BBQ chicken and other such food, we now carry the Thick Thomas Sauce, which has the same great flavor as the original but a richer, thicker texture. Thick Thomas Sauce can be used the same way as ketchup because it won't drip or run off your burgers or fries. And for folks who prefer a spicier, hotter sauce, we now have Mildly Hot Thomas Sauce, which adds just enough black and red pepper to the original mild recipe to deliver some peppery zip to all your favorite foods.

Both the Thick Thomas Sauce and Mildly Hot Thomas Sauce come in generous 14 oz bottles. Along with the two sizes of the original Thomas Sauce, the new varieties of this North Carolina favorite are available now at the Carolina Sauce Company online store.

Zestfully yours,

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Carolina Sauce Co. Chow Chow Relishes

Authentic Southern chow chow is an old-fashioned relish and condiment made with chopped cabbage, sweet peppers (plus hot peppers for hot chow chow), onions, and pickling spices in a sweet-tart base of vinegar and sugar. After much research, I'm happy to announce that we've finally found a true Southern chow chow relish that's good enough to bear our name! Carolina Sauce Company Chow Chow Relish is crunchy, sweet and tangy, made with fresh local produce by an elderly gentleman and his wife in the rural North Carolina Piedmont. They've been making their delicious chow chow relish by hand in small batches for over 3 decades, using an old family recipe and following in the footsteps of the gentleman's mother, who founded their family business in the 1950s. You can taste the tradition and love that goes into every jar of this zesty condiment to this day.

Available in family-friendly Mild Chow Chow and the spicier Hot Chow Chow, you can enjoy these old-fashioned cabbage relishes the same way you'd use ordinary pickle relish or slaw: On burgers and sandwiches, as a side dish for country fare and comfort food, with barbecue, as an item on a relish tray or in your picnic basket, as a snack with cheese and crackers, or even simply straight out of the jar. Usually only found at roadside produce stands along country roads, you can now order all the chow chow you want from the comfort and convenience of your home or office computer thanks to the Carolina Sauce Company online store. If you miss Grandma's homemade chow chow, or if you've never had the pleasure of tasting real Southern chow chow relish, then now's your chance to do so while both flavors of Carolina Sauce Chow Chow Relish are on sale!

Zestfully yours,

Race City Sauce Works The "Revenooers" Smoked Habanero Jam

I've always enjoyed pepper jelly, especially if made with hot peppers for a good fiery kick to complement the sweetness. If you also enjoy hot pepper jelly, then let me tell you about one of my recent finds that I think you'll love: Race City Sauce Works The "Revenooers" Smoked Habanero Jam. Made in small batches from all-natural ingredients in the heart of North Carolina's NASCAR country, this smoked pepper jelly is fiery-hot thanks to the habaneros, with an enticing smokiness that plays nicely with the sweetness in this jam. The texture is thick and rich, but also pourable, which opens up new culinary horizons in the kitchen and on the grill: Race City Sauce Works Smoked Habanero Jam can be used as a sweet and spicy glaze for meats (especially ribs and roasts), and for poultry (especially dark meat). Spoon it over warm brie and serve with crackers for an upscale but fiery hors d'oeuvres. Blend it with cream cheese for a delicious dip or spread. Try it as a wing sauce, or for basting shrimp, veggie & pineapple kabobs. The possibilities are virtually endless!

While not as scorching-hot as Robert Rothschild Hot Raspberry Thunder Sauce which is spiked with capsaicin extract, Race City Sauce Works The "Revenooers" Smoked Habanero Jam is definitely very, very hot if enjoyed straight from the bottle. But the heat is quite manageable especially if you pair this delicious hot pepper jam with any type of cheese, or use it as a glaze. The "Revenooers" Smoked Habanero Jam is very low sodium, and comes in a generous 12 oz bottle. Need one more reason to try this alternative to everyday pepper jelly? How about this: "Revenooers" Smoked Habanero Jam is currently on sale at the Carolina Sauce Company!

Zestfully yours,

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Nando's Peri Peri Grinds In Stock Today!

Breaking News: Our long-awaited shipment of all 3 flavors of Nando's Peri Peri Grinders have just now arrived at our warehouse -- AND they're on sale! As announced last week, we were able to purchase a limited supply of fresh Nando's Grinds (this is NOT old inventory) through one of our importers, and pre-orders have been coming in. Unfortunately, we don't know if or when we will be able to get another batch of Nando's Grinds, so if you haven't yet placed an order for these delicious and versatile -- and hard to find -- South African spice blends, don't delay! Just click on the link above, or visit Carolina Sauce Company and click on the link in the left-hand column where we announce the return of Nando's Grinders.

Zestfully yours,

Monday, March 9, 2009

Newsletter Sale Reminder: Only 2 Days Left to Save Big!

Do you want to save money while eating well? Then take advantage of the ongoing Carolina Sauce Company Newsletter Sale! Lots of delicious sauces, condiments and snacks are currently on sale, AND by using a special coupon code, you can save an additional 10% off the product total for orders of $40 or more. Want to find the coupon code, and special sale prices? Then read the Carolina Sauce Newsletter here on this blog -- but don't delay, because the coupon is good for 2 more days only and expires on March 10th!

Zestfully yours,

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Tortuga Spicy Seafood Grill Sauce

I've been lucky enough to visit the Caribbean a couple of times in years past, and I have fond memories of sitting at a beachside table watching a spectacular sunset over the ocean while dining on fresh grilled fish that was seasoned with an irresistible blend of spices and peppers in a subtly sweet and slightly tart sauce with hints of tropical fruit. Despite my best efforts in the kitchen, I've never been able to duplicate that heavenly sauce -- but I've discovered someone who has, and I now have the pleasure of enjoying Caribbean-style grilled fish and seafood whenever I want without having to leave my home. What's my secret? Tortuga Spicy Seafood Grill Sauce, made in the West Indies using traditional ingredients like tamarinds and scotch bonnet flavors.

Winner of a 2006 Scovie Award, Tortuga Spicy Seafood Grill Sauce is bursting with authentic island flavor and just the right amount of tropical peppery heat. Treat yourself, family and friends to a gourmet Caribbean meal by marinading and grilling your favorite fish and shellfish with this tastebud-tantalizing sauce that's so easy to use. The label has a simple and delicious recipe for Caribbean tartar sauce that's a wonderful condiment for fried shrimp or fish, and especially conch fritters. Want to get fancy without too much work? Then make tasty tropical kabobs by threading shrimp, pearl onions, bell pepper chunks, cherry tomatoes and fresh pineapple chunks onto skewers, marinating in Tortuga Spicy Seafood Grill Sauce and then grilling or broiling until done, basting with more sauce. Serve over rice with a side of cooked plantains, and perhaps some mango or papaya slices, and you have a complete Caribbean dinner without having to travel to the islands! Until now, Tortuga Spicy Seafood Grill Sauce has been virtually impossible to find outside of the Caribbean, but now you can easily get it from the Carolina Sauce Company online store, where it's currently on sale!

Zestfully yours,

Friday, March 6, 2009

Best-Selling Gift Sets for 2008

This is the last of our top-ten best seller lists in specific product categories for 2008. If you're looking for best-selling food gifts at a bargain price, you can't go wrong with any of the following themed gift sets from the Carolina Sauce Company!

1. Our best-selling gift set for 2008 was a perennial favorite, the Mild version of our NC BBQ Sauce Gift Set. This ever-popular gift set comes with 6 full-size bottles of North Carolina barbecue sauces and grilling sauces featuring the different regional styles found in NC, including our own unique multiple-award winning marinade & grilling sauce, Greg's Happy Sauce.

2. In second place last year was our Hot Wings Gift Set, with 4 bottles of our most popular wing sauces ranging from traditional Buffalo style to gourmet and exotic, plus a jar of the quintessential hot wings dipping sauce, Anchor Bar Bleu Cheese Sauce

3. Finishing third was the Bone Suckin' Sauce Mild Gift Set from North Carolina, with 2 jars of mild Bone Suckin's Sauce, a bottle each of the savory Bone Suckin' Yaki marinade and zesty Bone Suckin' Rib Rub, and a jar of the mild version of Bone Suckin' Salsa, all at a discount.

4. The "customizable" George's BBQ Sauce Gift Box from North Carolina was the fourth best selling gift set last year -- you choose which flavors of George's BBQ Sauce to include in the gift box!

5. The hot version of our NC BBQ Sauce Gift Box took fifth place honors for 2008, featuring hot & spicy versions of the sauces in the mild NC BBQ Gift Box.

6. Similarly, the hot version of our Bone Suckin' Sauce Gift Set came in sixth among our best-selling gift sets.

7. Our Chipotle Lover's Gift Set finished a very respectable 7th, and comes with five different chipotle hot sauces, full of smoky fire and rich flavor.

8. Another favorite among chiliheads took eighth place honors: our Extra Hot Gift Set, which features five bottles of hotter-than-hot (but not ultra-hot) hot sauces from all over the world.

9. The versatile Mustard Lover's Gift Set, which includes five full-size jars of some of our best-selling mustards, ended the year in 9th place among our best-selling gift sets.

10. Rounding out our list of 2008's top ten best-selling gift sets was one of my personal favorites, our very own Peanut Lover's Gift Set, featuring four different cans of zestily-seasoned North Carolina peanuts, for your snacking pleasure.

Zestfully yours,

PS: All of the gift sets at the Carolina Sauce Company online store are priced at a discount from what it would cost to purchase the same sauces and products separately!

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Nando's Peri Peri Grinders Are Back!!

Breaking News: Fresh from South Africa, a new batch of all 3 flavors of the deliciously versatile and much-missed Nando's Peri Peri Grinders will arrive at our warehouse the week of March 9, 2009 -- AND they're on sale! We were able to obtain a limited supply of fresh Nando's Grinds (this is NOT old inventory) thanks to one of our importer's diligent efforts, but he has warned us that he's not sure when or if he'll be able to obtain more. Because of the very high demand for Nando's Peri Peri Grinders, we're letting customers pre-order now at the Carolina Sauce Company, and orders will be filled in the order received as soon as the grinders arrive at our warehouse.

If you've never tried Nando's Peri Peri Grinds, you definitely want to get your hands on this flavor-packed whole spice seasoning with the nifty grinder top. You can either twist the top to freshly grind just the right amount of spices, or remove the lid altogether to spoon out or sprinkle the whole spices and coarse sea salt. The renowned Nando's Chickenland restaurants helped introduce the African peri-peri, or birds-eye, pepper to the rest of the world. Made in South Africa, all of the Nando's grinders feature the exotic peri-peri pepper. The Mild Peri Peri Grinder has just a touch of heat and features dried herbs and lemon peel, making it ideal for fish, seafood, poultry and vegetable dishes. The Medium Peri Peri Grinder packs a pleasant peppery punch complemented with garlic and a hint of citrus, and it's wonderful with poultry, meat, and more full-flavored fish like tuna and salmon. And for folks who love fiery heat, Nando's Hot Peri Peri Grind will not disappoint -- and its robust flavor and fire is fabulous on pizza and Italian food (use instead of red pepper flakes!), in all your favorite Mexican dishes, mixed into meatloaf and burgers, and more. Nando's Peri Peri Grinders are Kosher and low-carb, too. So don't miss out on these popular seasonings, and order today!

Zestfully yours,

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Best Selling Wing Sauces for 2008

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

1. Our best-selling wing sauce should come as no surprise, since it is THE sauce that gave birth to Buffalo style hot wings: Anchor Bar Original Buffalo Wing Sauce, from the now-famous Anchor Bar in Buffalo NY

2. In second place was a newer recipe from the Anchor Bar, their sweet & tangy Anchor Bar Honey BBQ Buffalo Wing Sauce

3. The third-best-selling wing sauce was actually our very own Hot Wings Gift Set, featuring 4 different wing sauces plus a jar of Anchor Bar Bleu Cheese Sauce for dipping, all at a discounted price

4. The award-winning, exotic Wahoo Willie's Jamaican Wing Sauce from Wrightsville Beach, NC, took 4th place honors last year among our selection of wing sauces - and it's currently on sale at the Carolina Sauce Company!

5. A spicier version of the original Anchor Bar wing sauce, the aptly-named Anchor Bar Hotter Buffalo Wing Sauce, was our fifth best-selling wing sauce for 2008

6. The buttery-rich, herb-seasoned and mildly spicy Scorned Woman Wicked Wing Sauce finished 6th, and it is wicked good!

7. The fiery hot Anchor Bar Suicidal Buffalo Wing Sauce ended the year in 7th place, proving that there are plenty of folks out there who enjoy "suicide wings"

8. One of our newer wing sauces, the tangy-sweet and spicy-hot Tony's Birdland Hot Wing Sauce from Rochester NY, finished a very impressive 8th on our best-seller list - and it's currently on sale!

9. Not really a wing sauce but rather the quintessential hot wings dipping sauce, Anchor Bar Bleu Cheese Sauce took 9th place last year, despite being added to our offerings very late in the year

10. Another insanely hot wing sauce that's spiked with capsaicin extract for an unforgiving, long-lasting burn, DEFCON 1 Extreme Heat Wing Sauce completes our list of the top ten best-selling wing sauces for 2008.

Zestfully yours,

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Tortuga Mango & Ginger Stir Fry Sauce

Two of my favorite tropical flavors, sweet mango and zippy ginger, are masterfully blended together with island spices and seasonings in Tortuga Mango & Ginger Stir Fry Sauce from the sunny island of Barbados. As the name suggests, this delicious, mildly spicy sauce is fabulous for marinading and stir frying all sorts of seafood as well as chicken and veggies. You can also pour it on steamed or microwaved food for a burst of zesty flavor, or even stir it into plain cooked rice to dress it up. I've been known to use Tortuga Mango & Ginger Stir Fry Sauce on tossed green salads as an alternative to salad dressing. Try it as an alternative to mayo or other ordinary condiments when composing a cold shellfish and/or vegetable salad, for an exotic tropical twist. The label even has a quick and easy recipe for a cheese spread to enjoy on crackers!

Virtually impossible to find outside of the Caribbean, and a favorite of folks who have cruised to the Caymans and other Caribbean destinations, Tortuga Mango & Ginger Stir Fry Sauce is a rare gem of a sauce that's now readily available -- and on sale -- at the Carolina Sauce Company online store. If you're watching your salt or carb intake, you'll be thrilled to know that this tasty treat is low carb (only 1 gram of carbs per serving) and very low sodium (only 5 mg per serving). Give it a try, and you'll bring some warm Caribbean sunshine to a dreary winter day!

Zestfully yours,

Monday, March 2, 2009

Carolina Sauce Snow Update

Yes, we got a couple of inches of snow last night here in Durham, and as a result the Carolina Sauce Company opened late this morning - and unfortunately, we're short-handed in our warehouse today. To top things off, our UPS driver called a little while ago to let us know that he has to pick up our packages early today because corporate wants their drivers off the road early for fear of icy conditions later this evening. We're doing all we can to get as many weekend orders packed and shipped out today, but I can tell by looking at the packing queue that we won't get everything out today. We apologize for this inconvenience, and will work as late as safely possible this evening to catch up as much as possible for tomorrow.

I suspect we'll have to open late tomorrow again because of icy road conditions, but I'm hoping and praying that we'll have all hands available by the afternoon to continue catching up with orders. Again, I apologize for any inconvenience, and we will continue doing all we can to get caught up so that everyone can get their hot sauce, barbecue sauce and all other zesty products as soon as possible. Many thanks for your patience and understanding, and if you have any questions or concerns please don't hesitate to contact us at 919-286-1080 or by email ("salesATcarolinasauceDOTcom").

Best regards,

PS: Stay tuned for some great new North Carolina products, including our very own eastern NC BBQ sauce, plus some much-anticipated chow chow relish from the North Carolina mountains! They've arrived in our warehouse, and as soon as we're caught up with order processing and shipping, we'll get these delicious new items up at the Carolina Sauce Company online store so that you can buy them and give them a taste. Trust me, they're worth the wait!