Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Get 5% off OR Free Shipping from Carolina Sauce thru Halloween!

BREAKING NEWS:  From now through midnight (EDT) on Halloween, you'll automatically get 5% off all online orders under $75 (exclusive of shipping & tax), OR free shipping on all orders of $75 or more (excl. tax), no coupon required!

Yes, everyone saves when you shop online at the Carolina Sauces online store.  And you don't even have to worry about entering a coupon code or finding one to enter. Simply order your favorite barbecue sauces, hot sauces, sauce gifts or other zesty foods from us and you'll automatically get either the discount or the free shipping applied to your order at checkout, depending on your product total.

In case this sounded too good to be true or you're in any way confused, I'll break it down for you:

If you order less than $75 in products from Carolina Sauces, we'll automatically apply a 5% discount off your product total at checkout. No coupon required, simply place your order online, complete it, and you'll see the discount applied automatically.

If you order $75 or more in products from Carolina Sauces, we'll automatically give you FREE shipping for your order (this is instead of the 5% discount, and is an even better deal, so you save more when you order more stuff from us). To qualify for free shipping, all you have to do is order at least $75 in products, and that's it, no coupon needed. **Please note this applies only to FedEx Ground shipping to addresses within the continental US only (excludes HI & AK).

Got it?  Good!

Now click here to shop online and get ready to save while you spice up your life or get some zesty holiday shopping done. Remember, these special offers expire at midnight on October 31, 2013.

Zestfully yours,

Friday, October 25, 2013

VIP Coupon Sale Ends Tonight!

Attention all Carolina Sauce Company VIP Club members:

***Our October VIP coupon sale ends at midnight tonight!***

If you haven't yet used your October VIP coupon to save 7% off your order at the Carolina Sauces online store, you're running out of time. So stop delaying and shop now.

If you already used your VIP coupon earlier this month, I have good news:  

You can use the coupon again as many times as you want before it expires. You can even share it with friends or family. In fact, all our VIP coupons are unlimited-use as long as they're valid.

If you have no idea what I'm talking about, but you want to save 7% on hot sauces, BBQ sauce, zesty snacks and themed gift sets (Christmas is right around the corner), send me an email ASAP and I'll send you a complimentary VIP coupon that's good through midnight tonight. I'll also sign you up as a VIP so you won't miss next month's coupon sale. Membership in our VIP Club is FREE and you can cancel anytime, so there's nothing to lose.

Zestfully yours,

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Love Venison & Other Game? Try This Seasoning & Rub

Click to buy online
Attention hunters, and anyone who enjoys venison, wild boar, quail, duck and other waterfowl, rabbit and other wild game or exotic meat:

Historic Lynchburg Tennessee Whiskey Venison & Wild Game Seasoning Rub is now available for purchase at the Carolina Sauces online store, and it's currently on sale!

Developed specifically to tenderize, complement and enhance wild game with carefully selected spices, herbs and other natural ingredients, this inspired seasoning blend brings out the best in anything you can hunt, as well as ordinary poultry, pork, beef and other more common meats.

Put an end to undesirable "gamey" flavors, dried out or tough wild game when you use this aromatic and enticing gourmet rub. Primarily savory with a hint of spice from green peppercorns and paprika, there's a dark and subtle sweetness from brown sugar with refreshingly all-American flavor notes from lavender and juniper berries that pair beautifully with game. The olive oil in this special rub helps to keep your meat juicy, unlike other all-purpose rubs that are salt-heavy and tend to draw out the juices from leaner meats like venison and other game.

Click to shop online
And then there's the Jack Daniels whiskey: Don't ask me how, but the folks at Historic Lynchburg have added some of this genuine Tennessee whiskey to their BBQ rub for a distinctively mellow roundness with hints of caramel and oak.

Whether you cook your wild game on the barbecue grill, on the stove or in the oven -- or perhaps you grind up your venison to make burgers or chili -- Tennessee Whiskey Venison & Wild Game Seasoning & Rub will make it taste like a gourmet chef prepared your meal. And it will make converts out of people who usually eschew game or exotic meats.

Zestfully yours,

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

When Life Gets In the Way...

Photo by liquene on Flickr
As anyone who owns a small business knows, sometimes life gets in the way.

And when that happens, sometimes you just have to step away and accept the fact that life takes priority over work.

This is one of those times for me.

Don't panic, it's nothing catastrophic or tragic, and everything should be back to normal in a few weeks (fingers crossed, prayers being said).

But beginning today and for the foreseeable future you'll be seeing less of me here and on the Carolina Sauce Facebook page while I recover from dental surgery later this morning and we complete several major home renovation projects that have been going on since the spring.

Because I won't be eating "real" food for at least a couple of days, and because we're still living in our RV with limited cooking options, it'll be a while before I'll have any new recipes of my own to post. And when we finally get the green light to move back into our house sometime in the next week or so, most of my time will be devoted to that daunting project.

So, please don't worry if there aren't as many blog posts or Facebook updates from the Carolina Sauce Company over the next few weeks, or if I'm a little slow to reply to your comments, messages or emails. As some of you know, I am a one-woman operation now, and there's only so much I can do when real life gets in the way.  Your patience and understanding -- as well as any prayers, positive energy and good wishes should you wish to send any -- are greatly appreciated.

The good news is that the Carolina Sauces online store and warehouse will continue to operate as usual because they are a separate company and location from me, so they're not affected by my temporary absence. You'll still be able to shop online and your orders will continue to be processed and shipped in a timely manner. Should you have any questions or concerns about any online orders, simply email Customer Service at the warehouse and they'll be able to help you as always.

If all goes smoothly, I hope to be able to post a new Crock Pot Game on Facebook on November 1st as originally planned, and also send out our November VIP newsletter soon thereafter. In other words, life should settle back down to "normal" by mid November (God willing).

In the meantime, thanks in advance for your support and I hope to stay in touch as much as I humanly can over the next few weeks.

Zestfully yours,

Monday, October 21, 2013

Limited-Time Sales at Carolina Sauces: Read This for Coupons

Click here for Facebook coupon
The Carolina Sauces online store is holding TWO limited-time coupon sales!

You can save either 5% or 7% off your product total if you have the right coupon code and shop online before the coupon expires.

How do you get one of these coupon codes?

There are two ways:

1. Like us on Facebook: This gets you the 5% off coupon, which is posted on our FB cover picture. The Facebook coupon is good through midnight on Halloween (that's October 31st, in case you're chronologically challenged). In case you're wondering, the cover pic looks like the one on the left here, except that on our FB page it includes text with the coupon code.

OR, for 7% off:

2. Join the Carolina Sauce VIP Club before Friday Oct. 25th. Our VIP Club is FREE, and in addition to your 7% off coupon (which is good through midnight on 10/25) we'll send you a copy of our October VIP Newsletter, with info on our newest products, a BBQ Rub Giveaway from our friends at Jim's Own Sauce, and a zesty cheese dip recipe that you can make with or without meat. As a VIP Club member, you'll receive our free monthly newsletter with recipes, cooking & grilling tips, new products, and the biggest discounts & best coupons we offer, exclusively for our VIPs. We email you only once a month, and you can unsubscribe anytime. Sign up here, or you can email me and I'll sign you up. Either way, do so before this Friday if you want your October VIP coupon for 7% off.

There you have it, two ways to save either 5% or 7% off at our online store.

Any questions? Simply leave a comment below or on our Facebook page, or email me.

Zestfully yours,

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Zesty Broccoli-Walnut Pesto

raw broccoli pesto pasta
Photo by Jules on Flickr
This thrifty alternative to traditional basil and pine nut pesto is just as tasty and probably even more nutritious than the traditional version.

Because the broccoli is lightly cooked first, its flavor will be mellower and unlikely to "offend" the sensibilities of those who usually turn their nose up at broccoli. In fact, if you don't disclose this ingredient, I'm willing to bet that no one will guess your pesto was made with broccoli. Give it a try and leave a comment below to let us know what you -- and any other diners -- think.

I prefer this pesto to be garlicky and slightly spicy. If you want a milder flavor, use less garlic and omit the red pepper flakes.

Serve my zesty broccoli walnut pesto with linguine, fettuccine, spaghetti, penne, or any other kind of pasta. You can also spread it on a pizza crust and top with your favorite pizza toppings to make pesto pizza.

1 lb frozen chopped broccoli
1 1/2 cups fresh basil leaves
1 cup fresh parsley leaves (save stems in freezer for soups etc.)
1/2 cup or more extra virgin olive oil
6 to 8 cloves garlic (or less if you prefer)
3/4 cup grated parmigiano cheese
3/4 cup walnut pieces, toasted
Sea salt & freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Optional: Up to 1/4 tsp dried red pepper flakes

Cook the broccoli according to package directions, but reduce the cooking time by a minute or two so that the broccoli is still bright green. Drain well and place in blender or food processor along with all ingredients except the salt and peppers. Blend or process to desired smoothness, stopping to scrape down the sides and drizzle in a little more oil if needed. Taste and season with salt, ground pepper and red pepper flakes to taste, pulsing a couple of times to blend in the seasonings. If not using right away, transfer into a lidded container and drizzle a thin layer of EVOO over the pesto before covering with lid. Store in refrigerator.

Zestfully yours,

PS:  If you like to spice up your pasta or pizza with a few splashes of hot sauce and are wondering what would go well with this pesto sauce, I recommend Tahiti Joe's Italian Heat Tropi-Garlic Hot Sauce.

Friday, October 18, 2013

Two Tips for Cooking Pasta like an Italian Chef

Fusili with Chard Tomato & Bacon Sauce
Recipe for Fusili with Chard, Tomato & Bacon
When it comes to boiling spaghetti or other pasta, there's a good chance you're doing it wrong -- or at least not the way an experienced Italian cook or professional chef would do it.

And if you're not doing it their way, you're missing out on superior flavor in all your favorite pasta and spaghetti recipes.

For generations, the conventional home cook's wisdom had been to add a dash of salt and a splash of oil to the water before boiling spaghetti or pasta. In recent years, however, there's been some controversy about whether to do either, with some people warning that salt adds nothing but unwanted sodium, and others swearing that oil is the only way to keep pasta from sticking prior to saucing, and some culinary rebels declaring that neither addition is necessary.

To settle the debate once and for all, I did some research and checked with some chefs to learn what tastes best. Here are the two tried-and-true tips from the experts that they use at home and at their restaurants:

1. Generously salt the water.  Contrary to popular belief, the salt doesn't do much to speed up the boiling time, nor will it add unacceptable amounts of sodium to your pasta. What it will do, however, is enhance its natural flavor, much the same way that the right touch of salt on virtually any dish will complement and enhance its flavors (e.g., salted caramels, finishing a salad or steak with a dusting of sea salt, the coarse Kosher salt on a soft pretzel, etc.). Don't believe me? Add at least a couple of teaspoons or a tablespoon of salt to the water the next time you boil pasta or spaghetti, and for heaven's sake do not rinse the pasta after draining. Then serve as you normally would and see if you can taste a difference (it will be more evident with simpler preparations, e.g., pasta tossed with a little olive oil or butter and garlic or herbs). While this may seem like a lot of salt, it really is not when you consider that nearly all of it will be discarded along with the boiling water, leaving behind beautifully-seasoned, not salty, spaghetti or pasta.

King of Pasta
King of Pasta Gift Set - click to buy
2. Don't add oil to the water. Sure, adding oil might slightly reduce the risk that some of the pasta might stick together after it's drained, but there's a better way to accomplish that (keep reading for that way). What adding oil will definitely do, however, is keep your sauce from sticking to the pasta as well as it should! Any oil coating on the spaghetti or other pasta will create a slick surface, causing tomato or cream sauces to slide off and pool at the bottom of the plate, rather than adhering to the cooked pasta. You didn't add that sauce just to eat naked or partially nude pasta followed by spoonfuls of sauce; rather, you want to taste that savory, saucy goodness with every bite of spaghetti or pasta. So leave the oil out of the water -- and to keep pasta from sticking after draining, be prepared to sauce it immediately after draining or return it to the empty pot with just a little bit of the water in which you boiled it. Better still, instead of draining into a colander, pour out most of the water from the pot and use a pasta scoop or server to scoop out the cooked spaghetti or pasta onto plates or a bowl and then adding the sauce, or scoop directly into the pot or bowl holding your sauce and then toss to coat.

Zestfully yours,
Carolina Sauce Company

PS:  If you're searching for a gourmet pasta gift to give this Christmas or holiday season, send the King of Pasta Gift Set, shown above right, with a variety of imported Italian pastas and a bottle of extraordinary white truffle oil.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Apple Cinnamon BBQ Sauce with a Splash of Tennessee Whiskey

You don't have to stop enjoying barbecue just because Autumn is here and the cooler weather is moving in. If you want to experience the flavors of the season while enjoying barbecued or grilled chicken, meat or pork, let me introduce you to this Fall-flavored BBQ sauce from Historic Lynchburg Tennessee.

Crisp, juicy apples play a starring role in this savory-sweet tomato-based barbecue sauce, and their natural sweetness is enhanced by molasses, honey and brown sugar. Warm spices including cinnamon and ginger add zip without heat, while pineapple adds just the right amount of zesty tang without the harshness of vinegar. Savory seasonings like garlic, onion and soy sauce provide depth and richness, but the real flourish comes from a healthy splash (or two) of genuine Jack Daniels Whiskey.

Don't worry, you can't get drunk from this BBQ sauce and it's perfectly fine for all ages to enjoy -- and I bet it will soon become a family favorite for everything from beef or pork ribs, grilled or roasted chicken, pork chops, portobello burgers and regular hamburgers, shrimp kabobs, grilled vegetables and more.

In addition to traditional barbecue flavors, use Historic Lynchburg TN Whiskey Apple Cinnamon BBQ Sauce in sloppy joes, chili, meatloaf and other recipes calling for some BBQ sauce. Whether you slather or mop it on, baste or marinade with it, pour it on at the table or serve it in a bowl for dipping (it's fantastic with fries, chicken fingers, breaded shrimp and other finger food), this one's a winner in Autumn and any other time of the year.

Buy Tennessee Whiskey Apple Cinnamon Barbecue Sauce online while it's on sale at the Carolina Sauce Company.

Zestfully yours,

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Pan-Seared Pork Chops with Sauteed Spicy Greens

Pork chops and collard greens
This simple but satisfying supper was born of necessity and improvisation: We're presently living in our RV as renovation projects have taken over our house, leaving us with a small but serviceable range, refrigerator and freezer in our temporary "residence."

A friend was kind enough to give me a bunch of tender collard greens from her garden, and I had a couple of frozen pork chops from my favorite local source (MAE Farm) plus an onion, olive oil and basic seasonings. We also had a bottle of Pinot Grigio, and I happen to like white wine with pork. VoilĂ , dinner in under an hour!

The amounts in the following "recipe" (quotation marks simply because this is more of a guide rather than a formal recipe) are completely adjustable to suit your needs and preferences. Plan on 1 pork chop per person, and one bunch of collards or other greens for every 2 adults (you can always refrigerate any leftover greens for later meals). Although I used a chimichurri seasoning blend for the chops, any kind of spice blend or seasoning rub for meat will work. Good choices include Chili Pepper Republic Coffee Bourbon Molasses Rub for an earthy-spicy-sweet flavor, Pork Rubbers Mary's Cherry Rub made with real cherry and a hint of smoke, and Stubb's Pork Spice Rub with a zesty-tangy flavor from dried chilies, lime, paprika and mustard.

Stubb's Pork Spice Rub
Olive Oil
Chopped Onion (I used half of a small onion for 1 small bunch of collards)
Collard Greens, well washed, stemmed and coarsely chopped
Salt & Pepper to taste
1 or 2 dashes (or to taste) Crushed Red Pepper Flakes
White Wine
Pork Chops (I prefer bone-in)
Dry Rub or BBQ Seasoning Blend, or simply some salt, pepper & a dried herb or two

Pour just enough olive oil into a heavy-bottomed pot or large, deep skillet to cover the bottom. Add onions and saute over medium heat until translucent and tender. Add collards and cook, stirring regularly, until wilted and bright green. Season as desired with salt, pepper and red pepper flakes, then pour in about 1/4 cup (or more for a large bunch of collards) wine. Stir, cover and reduce heat to low. Let cook until completely tender, stirring occasionally and adding a splash of wine if the greens start looking too dry. It's hard to overcook collards, which is why I start them first before cooking the pork chops and that way the greens should be done at the same time as the chops.

cooking pork chops
Heat a large, heavy-bottomed skillet (cast iron is perfect) over medium-high or high heat. While this skillet is heating, season both sides of the pork chops with your choice of complementary seasoning. When the skillet is hot, place the chops in the pan and cook for several minutes (at least 5, longer for thicker chops) undisturbed to create a good dark-brown sear. Carefully flip the chops to sear the other side for a few minutes, then reduce heat to medium and partially cover pan (I completely cover with a metal mesh splatter screen rather than partially covering with a lid). Cook until the pork chops are done: The juices flow clear or the center interior reaches 140°F on your meat thermometer.

To serve, spoon some of the collards & onions on each plate and top with a pork chop.

Zestfully yours,

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

New Hot Pepper Sauces from Pain is Good

Most Wanted Pain is Good Sriracha Pepper Sauce
Pain is Good is one of the best-known hot sauce brands around, with a long history of making superior hot sauces and other spicy condiments using quality ingredients in traditional as well as unorthodox combinations. Among their classic offerings are a zesty garlic pepper sauce and a Louisiana Cajun hot sauce, while some of their unusual recipes include a sweet Caribbean jerk Buffalo wing sauce and a hot & spicy trail mix. One thing that all of their products share, in addition to versatility and palate-pleasing flavors, is the trademark "screaming head" on each label, which is guaranteed to catch your eye when looking at a crowded store shelf or browsing an online hot sauce store.

The Carolina Sauce Company is pleased to announce the arrival of five new flavors of Pain is Good hot sauces, each based on popular and classic hot sauce recipes that have survived the test of time and will find plenty of uses in your kitchen and at the table.  Sold under the "Most Wanted" name, these new hot pepper sauces display the original three Pain is Good "screaming heads" on the label, in homage to the brand's iconic image.

My favorite of the bunch is Most Wanted Pain is Good Sriracha Sauce, for several reasons. First and foremost, it delivers that genuine peppery-garlicky-savory sriracha sauce flavor that's essential for spicing up Thai recipes and other Asian favorites. But unlike most sriracha sauces on the market, Most Wanted Sriracha Sauce is relatively mild on the heat scale, with a gentle touch of sweetness that deftly tames the flames without sabotaging the overall flavor. This thoughtful touch renders this sriracha hot sauce much more "user friendly," especially when serving more delicate dishes (e.g., broiled fish or steamed vegetables) or feeding folks with lower heat tolerances. The milder heat also means you can use this pepper sauce as much as you like, and as often as you wish, without burning out your taste buds or tearing up your digestive system. Enjoy it on home-cooked food as well as on Chinese takeout or delivery pizza, just to name a few ways.
Most Wanted Pain is Good Chipotle Pepper Sauce
A close second for me is Most Wanted Pain is Good Chipotle Sauce. Rich and thick with a masterful balance of earthy, smoky depth and medium peppery heat in a mellow tomato base with hints of sweetness, a touch of sunny citrus and a pinch of savory garlic & onion.  Whether you're enjoying Mexican, Tex-Mex or Southwestern dishes, or snacking on hearty appetizers like nachos or breaded chicken strips, or cooking up a batch of chili or rice & beans, or looking for something to jazz up a casserole or stew, Most Wanted Chipotle Sauce has what it takes. This baby knows how to complement and enhance a food's flavors without overpowering it or overwhelming the other ingredients. But it also knows when to shine in a starring role, such as the basting or dipping sauce for grilled shrimp or chicken breasts, or as an alternative to ketchup with burgers, fries, scrambled eggs, onion rings and more. Not as hot as a Mexican chipotle sauce but also not for hot sauce wimps, this crowd-pleasing chipotle hot sauce from Pain is Good certainly lives up to the brand's name.

Most Wanted Pain is Good Jalapeno SauceIf you prefer your jalapeno peppers green and smokeless, then Most Wanted Pain is Good Jalapeno Sauce is for you. But if you're used to vinegary, one-dimensional jalapeno pepper sauces from the supermarket, your taste buds are in for a real treat. This jalapeno hot sauce is far more substantial than the average swill: Roasted green chilies add depth and dimension while onions, garlic and lime juice play with the natural vegetal flavor of unripened, fresh jalapenos. This is the kind of hot sauce normally only experienced at authentic Mexican restaurants or made at home by an experienced cook or chef. In addition to the logical pairings with Mexican and similar fare, Most Wanted Jalapeno Sauce is an excellent choice on pizza or eggs, burgers or sandwiches, in chili or other ground meat or bean recipes, and pretty much anywhere else when you want to add genuine jalapeno flavor with solid but not overpowering heat (it ranks a strong medium on a general heat scale).
Most Wanted Pain is Good Habanero Pepper Sauce
For habanero pepper lovers, we have Most Wanted Pain is Good Habanero Pepper Sauce, starring ripe orange habanero peppers in all their fiery fury for a hot heat level that will not disappoint chileheads who insist on real habanero burn but don't want it artificially boosted by extracts or added capsaicin oil. Made in the Caribbean or West Indian style, this zesty hot sauce features a zesty vinegar, carrot and mustard base that gets additional savory flavor from turmeric, garlic and onions. There's no sweetness or sugar in this gloriously hot condiment, making it a favorite of anyone counting carbs or watching their sugar intake. Most Wanted Habanero Sauce is perfect for more robust and heartier dishes, including grilled, broiled or roasted meats and poultry. It's also a natural in Caribbean, West Indian and Latin American recipes calling for heat, including red beans and rice, roast pork, beef or seafood stews, and more.

Most Wanted Pain is Good Cayenne Pepper SauceLast but most definitely not least, there's Most Wanted Pain is Good Cayenne Sauce, made with Louisiana's most popular pepper. This is a kinder, gentler, more family-friendly version of classic Louisiana hot sauce, with a relatively mild heat but with a broad, full flavor that's much more satisfying than the usual tart vinegar tang. In addition to aged cayenne peppers, Most Wanted Cayenne Pepper Sauce uses tomato paste, malt vinegar, a pinch of sugar, and traditional Cajun herbs and spices for a rich flavor and body. Whether you're preparing Jambalaya, etouffee, a crawfish boil or other Cajun or Creole recipes, this hot sauce is up for the occasion. It's also a fine way to spice up other foods from pizza and burgers to eggs or spaghetti sauce, or homemade buffalo wings or bloody marys. If it's anything but dessert, chances are this pepper sauce will make it zippy and better.

Now's the time to try these new Pain is Good Most Wanted hot sauces, while they're on sale at the Carolina Sauces online store. And if you want to save an additional 7% off the sale price, simply email me for our current VIP Club discount -- or sign up for our VIP Club before October 25th and I'll send you a complimentary coupon code good through midnight on Oct. 25th.

Zestfully yours,

Friday, October 11, 2013

How to Poach Fish Perfectly in 6 Simple Steps

Buy Fresh Fish OnlinePerfectly poached fish is tenderly flaky yet moist, and sublimely satisfying in its simplicity of a few complementary, and never overpowering, flavoring ingredients.

Too many people are intimidated by the thought of poaching fish. They mistakenly assume that it's a difficult skill to master, or that the poached fish is likely to turn out soggy and bland or dried out and unpleasantly fishy.

Well, they're wrong.

If you've always wanted to poach fish but were afraid to try, these foolproof instructions are for you. Just follow these six simple steps with any fresh fish you wish to poach:
  1. Choose a Poaching Liquid: Preferred options include white wine, broth (chicken or vegetable), or even plain water.  You'll need 1 to 1 1/2 cups for 1 to 1 1/2 lbs fish fillets.

  2. Select Fish-Friendly Vegetables:  Good choices include sliced fresh mushrooms, thinly sliced carrots & celery, chopped green onions, thinly sliced fresh ginger & lemongrass with snow peas. Use one or more of what you like, remembering to keep it simple and that the fish has the starring role. All you need is a cup or so of vegetables, depending on type (strongly flavored ones like ginger & lemongrass should be used sparingly).

  3. Add Complementary Herbs & Spices: Add a Tablespoon or so of chopped fresh herbs or a teaspoon or so of dried. Good choices include parsley, tarragon, thyme, rosemary, oregano, or cilantro. Use less of a stronger herbs such as rosemary or cilantro than you would a milder herb like parsley. A twist or two of freshly-ground black or white pepper from a peppermill is nice, as well as a touch of sea salt. If you want to get "fancy," add a little bit of freshly-scraped lemon, lime or orange zest. Or get creative and add a sprinkling of Caribbean Key Lime Spice.

  4. Prepare the "Fish Bath": Place the poaching liquid, vegetables & herbs in a 10" skillet or similar frying pan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 5 minutes to allow the flavors to develop.

  5. 5 lbs. Salmon Fillets
  6. Start Cooking: Uncover the skillet and use a spatula or serving spoon to carefully lower the fish fillets into the hot liquid. Spoon the liquid over the fish so that exposed surface is moistened. Cover and simmer until the fish is done, about 6 to 8 minutes. You know the fish is done when it flakes easily and you insert a fork at the thickest part and the flesh is opaque white instead of translucent. Use a slotted spoon or spatula to gently remove the fish along with the vegetables to a plate and keep warm while you make a sauce with the poaching liquid.

  7. Finish the Sauce: Return the liquid to a boil and boil, uncovered, until reduced to less than half a cup of liquid. Spoon this sauce over the fish and vegetables.
That's it!

Zestfully yours,

Thursday, October 10, 2013

If You'd Like a Carolina Sauce Coupon (and Zesty Dip Recipe), Read This

Buy hot sauce
The Carolina Sauce Company October VIP Newsletter was sent out today to all our VIP Club members. Among the featured items in the Newsletter are:

* A limited-time VIP-only coupon for 7% off all products at the Carolina Sauces online store

* A zesty, cheesy dip recipe available only in our Newsletter, with a bacon-rich Meat-Lovers version and a meatless Vegetarian version

* The latest new products now available on our website

* Info on a BBQ Rub Giveaway from our partner Jim's Own Sauce

* Scary Sauces that are perfect for Halloween and anytime you crave frighteningly hot heat

Did you get a copy of our Newsletter today?

If not, and you'd like one -- it's FREE -- then simply email me and I'll add you to our VIP Club and email you a copy of our October Newsletter with your VIP discount coupon and other zesty news.

Or, if you prefer, you can sign up for our VIP Club (it's free, too) and you'll be set to receive our monthly newsletter with VIP-only discounts, recipes & news.

Zestfully yours,

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Whole-grain Buttermilk Cornbread

wholegrain buttermilk cornbread
Did you know that most cornmeal sold in the US is a whole grain? Stone-ground yellow cornmeal contains some of the hull and germ in addition to the corn endosperm, giving it more flavor and nutritional value than steel-ground cornmeal, as well as a coarser texture. Blue cornmeal, which is ground from whole blue corn kernels, likewise is a nutritious whole grain but it can be difficult to find.

My whole grain buttermilk cornbread recipe uses stone ground yellow cornmeal and whole wheat flour instead of the usual white flour in order to maximize nutrition without sacrificing flavor. This recipe probably works just as well if you use blue cornmeal instead of yellow, but the color may be somewhat odd. If you've ever used blue cornmeal in a cornbread, please leave a comment to let us know how it turned out -- and please also leave a photo if you have one!

My recipe is an adaptation of the traditional buttermilk cornbread recipe from the 1970 cookbook Our Daily Bread by Stella Standard. Although I usually make and prefer to eat savory rather than sweet cornbread, this one has a delightfully mellow sweetness that's complementary, not cloying. It is very moist with a somewhat crumbly texture, at least when baked in a ceramic pan rather than a cast-iron skillet. And although I didn't add hot peppers to this recipe, there's no reason not to add some diced jalapenos or other spicy chilies if you  want a hot and spicy cornbread.

2 eggs, well-beaten
2 cups buttermilk
1/4 cup melted butter
1 tsp salt
2 cups stone-ground yellow cornmeal
1 cup whole wheat flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 cup fresh-cut or frozen & thawed corn kernels

Preheat oven to 375°F, and grease an 8"x11" baking dish (the original recipe recommends dusting it with flour after greasing, but I didn't do that). Place the first four ingredients in a bowl and stir well to combine thoroughly. In a large bowl combine the cornmeal, flour and baking powder -- the original recipe recommends sifting but I didn't and instead simply stirred well to thoroughly mix together. Stir the liquid ingredients into the dry, then add the brown sugar & corn kernels and stir until thoroughly combined. Pour into the prepared baking dish and bake at 375°F until lightly browned and a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean, about 45 minutes or longer depending on your oven. Let sit for 5 to 10 minutes before cutting and serving.

Zestfully yours,
Carolina Sauce Company

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Calavera Hot Sauce: Scary-Hot & Perfect for Halloween

Calavera Hot Sauce
Add "hot sauce" to your list of scary Halloween props.

Calavera Hot Sauce's intense and unrelenting burn is as frightening and dangerous as any Halloween ghoul. Made from the two hottest pepper varieties on the planet -- India's bhut jolokia (aka naga jolokia or ghost pepper) and Trinidad's moruga scorpion chili -- this ultra-hot sauce doesn't need any artificial extracts or added capsaicin oil to boost its firepower any further. Please trust me when I tell you that all you will need to add searing heat to any dish is a micro-droplet from a toothpick. And if you are going to use Calavera in a recipe, please start off with just one or two drops first, to let you get a good sense of its unforgiving intensity before you risk scorching the taste buds off your tongue or destroying your digestive system.

If the preceding description has scared you away from actually eating Calavera hot sauce, please don't let it deter you from buying it: Its colorful "death's head" label makes it an eye-catching, novel and very appropriate Halloween decoration, especially if you're hosting a Halloween party.

For those of you who are experienced with super-hot hot sauces and enjoy them on food and in recipes, you'll be interested in knowing that Calavera is more than just another scary-hot sauce. In addition to the jolokia and scorpion peppers, which happen to be the main two ingredients in this caustic condiment, Calavera is made with other natural ingredients including tomato, onion, garlic and other vegetables plus black pepper and chili powder to enhance and broaden the layers of heat. All of this is blended in a tangy two-vinegar base (cider and distilled), with a squeeze or two of lemon juice for a hint of bright citrus. In short, this extreme hot sauce scores well on flavor as well as fire.

Buy Calavera Hot Sauce online while it's on sale at the Carolina Sauces online store -- but don't delay; if you want to have this hot sauce in time for Halloween, be sure to order today!

Zestfully yours,

PS:  For more Halloween Hot Sauces, please browse our selection of Holiday Hot Sauces

Monday, October 7, 2013

Can You Help Me with this Low-Carb Gluten-Free Recipe?

Low-carb gluten-free summer squash balls & fritters
Introducing my Zesty Summer Squash Fritters & Balls!

These flavorful morsels make a great snack, appetizer or side dish, and they're very low carb, gluten-free and relatively high in protein, too. You fry them in just a bit of oil or you can form them into little balls and bake them for an even healthier treat.

Sounds great, right?

This recipe has a problem.

Sure, it tastes delicious, looks pretty decent and is high protein/low carb/gluten-free -- and I'd like it to stay that way.

The problem is, it produces a big soupy mess when you combine the ingredients, making it very hard to form into fritters or balls for frying or baking.

One obvious solution would be to add some flour, bread crumbs or cracker meal, as one normally would when making fritters. But that makes them verboten for anyone who cannot or does not eat wheat or other traditional grain flours, even gluten-free versions.

Another idea I had after making my summer squash fritters was to combine the shredded zucchini and yellow squash with just the barbecue rub and not the other ingredients, let that sit for 30 minutes and then squeeze out & drain off any liquid. This idea is based on the assumption that the rub is extracting the liquid out of the squash, the way salt does with eggplant when you salt it before cooking. But if I use this method with the BBQ seasoning, my concern is that I would drain off much of the flavor that comes from the rub and end up with very bland fritters.

So, dear readers, can you help me improve this recipe without adding flour or other refined carbs?

Here's the current version -- if you have any suggestions or ideas, please share in a comment below:

3 cups shredded zucchini and/or yellow squash (I used 2 small of each)
ingredients for zucchini & summer squash fritters2 large eggs
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
2 to 3 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup finely chopped sweet red pepper (you can substitute finely chopped red hot pepper, e.g., ripe jalapeno, for some of the sweet pepper)
1/4 cup finely chopped onion
1 Tbs BBQ dry rub (I used Jim's Own Pincho Rub)
Optional: A little oil for frying

Combine all ingredients in a bowl and mix well. Note: At this point, the mixture began becoming more and more watery or "soupy," and as I formed the fritters and balls I had to squeeze out and drain off quite a lot of liquid, making the mixture harder to work with (see photo below on left -- and that was just the beginning of the problem).

making summer squash fritters
If frying the fritters: Pour just a little bit of oil in a large skillet over medium heat. When oil is hot, carefully place the fritters in the pan, leaving enough space between them so that you can turn them over with a spatula. Fry for several minutes until they have set and no longer look wet on top (you can partially cover the skillet to assist in the cooking), then carefully turn the fritters over to fry the other side: They should be at least golden brown on both sides. When done, transfer to paper towels to absorb any excess oil.

If baking the fritters or balls: Preheat oven to 375°F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Place fritters or balls on lined sheet, leaving some space between each fritter or ball. Bake at 375°F until golden and cooked through, about 25 to 30 minutes.

making zucchini & yellow squash balls
Serve hot with or without a dipping sauce:  Good choices include barbecue sauce, ranch dressing (especially if homemade), steak sauce, or even ketchup.

Now that you've read the recipe, and ideally given it a try yourself, please let me know what you'd add or change to solve the excess-liquid problem.

Thanks in advance, and I look forward to reading your comments and trying your suggestions. Whoever comes up with the "winning fix" for this recipe will get credit for it and special mention in a future blog post!

Zestfully yours,

Sunday, October 6, 2013

October Giveaway: Free BBQ Rub from Jim's Own!

Jim's Own Pincho BBQ Rub
During October, our partner Jim's Own Sauce is giving away FREE packages of their savory, sassy Pincho BBQ Rub!

Jim's Own Pincho Rub is a robust, all-purpose barbecue seasoning rub that's named after the Spanish word for "skewer." Earthy, spicy and savory not sweet, this feisty blend of paprika, garlic, oregano, parsley and other natural ingredients is fantastic on all sorts of meats and poultry, from traditional BBQ favorites like ribs, brisket and chicken to venison, pork chops and all types of burgers. It's also a great choice for shrimp, fish and vegetables. You can also use it indoors in chili or with roasted or broiled foods and even as a seasoning for blackening because it won't burn (there's no sugar in this rub). And of course it's a natural choice for kabobs and anything on a skewer! Simply pat some Pincho Rub on your food and marinate in the refrigerator: Overnight or several hours for red meats, up to 1 to 2 hours for poultry, and no more than 30 minutes to 1 hour for fish, seafood and vegetables.

Jim's Own BBQ Sauce & Dry RubJim's Own is one of North Carolina's best-loved and successful lines of barbecue sauces and seasoning rubs. Each month through November, the makers of these award-winning barbecue sauces and BBQ rubs are giving away a different flavor of one of their tasty and versatile dry rubs with every online order of Jim's Own products over $25 (excluding shipping/taxes). October's flavor is the Pincho Rub, and you'll get a free full-size package as this month's giveaway, to thank you for your business.

If you want a FREE full-size package of Jim's Own Pincho Rub, simply place an online order for over $25 in Jim's Own products (exclusive of shipping & taxes). Click here to order. Our friends at Jim's Own will include the free package of this zesty, Mexican-inspired barbecue rub together with the items in your order.

Zestfully yours,

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Vegan Recipe: Roasted Butternut & Carrot Soup with Cashew Cream

Roasted Butternut Squash & Carrot Soup with Cashew Cream
My roasted butternut squash and carrot soup is so sumptuously creamy that no one will know it's vegetarian -- vegan, in fact -- unless you tell them. The luxuriously rich mouthfeel comes from the roasted and pureed cashews.

If you're aiming for maximum velvety smoothness, it's essential that you puree everything thoroughly. For a more rustic texture as shown in the photo, I recommend processing the cashews separately until the consistency of homemade peanut butter and pureeing the vegetables to your desired smoothness.

Roasting enhances the natural sweetness of the winter squash and the carrots, while the curry powder adds a subtle spice flavor without making this soup taste "Indian." If you do want more of an Indian style flavor, add an additional 1/2 tsp or more of curry powder, and you can use ghee instead of the final addition of oil if you are not vegan. Because Greg and I enjoy hot and spicy food, I used 1/4 teaspoon of red (cayenne) pepper, which gave the soup a solid peppery heat that I'd rate towards the hotter end of "medium." For a gentler, only mildly spicy soup, cut the amount of cayenne in half, or even reduce to just a pinch or so. The soup should be pleasantly zippy to your taste, not painfully hot.

If you are not vegetarian, you can use chicken broth instead of vegetable stock, or finish with a little cream or half-and-half for additional richness, or top with a dollop of sour cream or creme fraiche. Other attractive garnishes include a few roasted chopped cashews and roughly-chopped fresh parsley.

This recipe does take time, mainly for roasting, and some effort (e.g., chopping, pureeing) but it is well worth it both in terms of taste and appearance. You can refrigerate and reheat leftovers, too -- the recipe makes 4 to 6 servings.

1 butternut squash, about 1 to 1 1/2 lbs
2 or 3 carrots, about 1/2 lbs
1 large sweet onion
15 to 20 peeled cloves of garlic (i.e., one medium head if you count the cloves)
Olive oil
1/2 to 3/4 cup chopped cashews
1 tsp curry powder
2 1/2 cups vegetable stock
1/2 cup white wine
1/8 to 1/4 tsp red pepper or ground cayenne
1/8 tsp ground cinnamon
1 Tbs very finely chopped fresh parsley
1/2 tsp (or to taste) salt

Preheat oven to 400°F. Peel the squash using a potato peeler, halve lengthwise, scoop out the seeds and chop the squash into chunks. Trim and peel the carrots, then chop into large chunks. Peel and trim the onion, quarter it then cut each quarter in half. Combine all of these vegetables in a large bowl together with the garlic, drizzle with olive oil and toss or stir with large spoon to coat all the vegetables evenly with the oil. Spread the vegetables in a single layer in a large, lightly oiled baking pan. Roast until the vegetables are very soft but be careful not to brown -- this will take about an hour or longer depending on your oven, and you will want to stir after 20 or 30 minutes and at least 1 or 2 more times afterwards to ensure even cooking (you might also have to reduce the temperature a little if the vegetables are turning golden before they're fork-tender).

While the vegetables are roasting, spread the cashew pieces in a small skillet or frying pan that's safe to heat without oil or liquid. Dry-roast the cashews over medium heat, stirring every few minutes and keeping a close eye as soon as they begin to darken because they can go from golden to burnt in seconds. When the cashews are golden and fragrant, remove from heat and set aside to cool.

Vegan butternut squash & carrot soup with cashew creamWhen the vegetables are tender and lightly golden, you're ready to start pureeing them in your blender or food processor, most likely in batches unless your machine is very large:  Transfer up to half of the roasted vegetables and cashews into your blender or processor, add some of the stock (1/2 to 1 cup) and puree to your desired smoothness. Repeat until all the vegetables and cashews have been pureed. If working in batches, have a large bowl or pot to pour the pureed batches into until all the vegetables have been processed -- or do what I did and simply pour into the original roasting pan, after draining out any remaining oil into the soup pot or Dutch oven that you'll be using to finish making the soup.

If you had any oil left in your roasting pan, drain this into a large soup pot or a Dutch oven -- you want about 1 Tablespoon of oil total. Heat over medium heat, add curry powder and cook, stirring constantly for 1 minute. Stir in the pureed soup, any remaining stock, and the rest of the ingredients. Bring to a low simmer, cover and cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Taste for balance and adjust the seasonings if desired (e.g., adding more salt, cayenne or cinnamon).

Zestfully yours,

Friday, October 4, 2013

Lynyrd Skynyrd Habanero Hot Sauce is Here!

Lynyrd Skynyrd Hot Sauce
"FREE BIRD!!!!!"

If you're a born and bred Southerner with a love for spicy food, or if you're a fan of classic Southern rock and particularly of the band Lynyrd Skynyrd, this announcement will rock your world and your taste buds:

The Carolina Sauces online store is now YOUR source for the one and only Lynyrd Skynyrd Habanero Hot Sauce!

On the other hand, if you find the confederate flag to be offensive to your more refined, politically correct and "socially conscious" sensibilities, then feel free to stop reading and move on to one of my vegetarian recipes.

Lynyrd Skynyrd Hot Sauce is loud and proud, just like its namesake's music. Made from simple, all-natural ingredients for honest habanero heat without any distracting additives like fancy spices, sissy sweetness or fruitiness, this straight-shooting hot sauce isn't shy or receding in flavor or appearance (yes, that's the old Stars and Bars on the label).

Use this bold and savory all-purpose hot sauce anytime you want to add some heat to your food without changing its flavor. It's great at the table on everything from breakfast (eggs any style, hash browns, even grits and especially in red-eye gravy) to lunch (sandwiches, burgers, pizza, fast-food, etc.) and dinner (anything grilled, smoked, baked, fried, broiled, slow-cooked or served raw, and on takeout of course). You can use it in any recipe that calls for hot sauce or that could use a spicy wake-up call: Chili, meatloaf, homemade hot wings, your secret BBQ sauce recipe, rice & beans, on nachos, in dips, with Mexican or Cajun favorites, in spaghetti sauce and more.

Buy Lynyrd Skynyrd Hot Sauce while it's on sale -- it's a unique gift idea, too!

Zestfully yours,

Thursday, October 3, 2013

A Healthier Garlic Buttermilk Ranch Dressing

My first taste of homemade ranch dressing was a revelatory experience: The clean, bright tang of the buttermilk, the fresh and honest herbal notes, the earthy pungency of the garlic and the naturally creamy, not-too-thick and not-too-runny mouthfeel was truly magnificent and eye-opening. I will never go back to bottled supermarket ranch dressing again.

Homemade buttermilk ranch dressing tastes best if you make it ahead of time, ideally the day before you want to use it but in any event at least a few hours beforehand. This allows the flavors to come together and develop, and also takes the "edge" off the raw garlic.

I developed this recipe after researching dozens of different buttermilk salad dressing recipes in cookbooks and online, many of which use quite a bit of sour cream and/or mayonnaise or "cheater's" ingredients like a packet of commercial dry dressing mix. I chose to go the natural, from-scratch route that kept high-fat ingredients to a minimum.

Despite its name, real buttermilk is naturally low in fat. Its thick body comes from the bacterial cultures in the milk, which also create the tang. So to keep the fat content of my dressing naturally low without sacrificing texture or flavor, I used real organic buttermilk, organic nonfat plain Greek yogurt instead of sour cream, and as little organic mayonnaise as I could get away with. If you can afford the organic ingredients, I highly recommend them for the best flavor.

My homemade ranch dressing has a zesty garlic flavor that's quite appealing if you love garlic. If you'd rather have a mellower, more traditional buttermilk ranch dressing that's not as garlicky, use only 1 small clove of minced garlic. For a delightfully cheesy, Italian-inspired Parmesan Ranch dressing, simply add 1/4 cup (or more to taste) of real grated Parmigiano cheese and 1/4 to 1/2 tsp dried oregano.

The one drawback to fresh, homemade ranch dressing is that it should be used within 3 to 4 days, at least according to what I've read. But it's fantastic on much more than mere salad: Try it on baked potatoes, as a seafood sauce, as a dip for raw vegetables or hot wings or fried appetizers, and even with potato chips or pretzels.

1 cup buttermilk*
1/4 cup mayonnaise
3 Tbs finely chopped fresh parsley (or 1 Tbs dried parsley)
2 Tbs nonfat Greek yogurt
2 tsp white wine vinegar
3 cloves garlic, finely minced
1/2 tsp onion powder
1/2 tsp (or to taste) Kosher salt
1/4 tsp (or to taste) ground pepper
1/4 tsp dried dill (or up to 1 tsp fresh dill)

*I don't recommend "low fat" buttermilk, i.e., buttermilk that has been labeled reduced- or low-fat, because it has only slightly less fat than real buttermilk and for best results you need to use the real thing in this recipe. I do recommend shaking the container of buttermilk before measuring out 1 cup for this recipe.

Place all ingredients in a pint mason jar, cover tightly with lid and shake vigorously until thoroughly combined. Taste for balance and add a little more salt or pepper if desired, or even a little more vinegar if not tangy enough or a touch more mayo or yogurt for a thicker, less tangy dressing (remember that the flavors will come together and round out with a few hours). Refrigerate for at least a few hours, and ideally overnight.  Use within 3 to 4 days.

Zestfully yours,

PS: If you enjoy the tangy flavor and crispy crunch of Ranch-flavored potato chips or nacho chips, but prefer a healthier snack that's extremely low in carbs and isn't loaded with artificial ingredients, try Deano's Ranch Jalapeno Chips, made from real sliced jalapeno peppers instead of potatoes or corn!

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

September's Best-Selling Products at Carolina Sauce

Wells Hog Heaven Barbecue Sauce
September brought a surprising amount of turmoil on our monthly list of Best-Selling Sauces & Seasonings at the Carolina Sauce Company. Although many of the "usual suspects" in the top five still made the cut, there were a few notable first-timers on the top ten list for last month.

Here's the complete list of September's top ten products, along with a little bit of information on each one to tempt your tastebuds and whet your appetite. To find out more, or to place an order, simply click on the product name or its photo.

1. Wells Hog Heaven BBQ Sauce: North Carolina is known for its pulled pork BBQ and the unique vinegar barbecue sauce that's found throughout the state either with tomatoes in the West or without tomatoes (just vinegar, pepper and spices) in the East. Well's is the quintessential Eastern NC vinegar barbecue sauce, and also our top-selling product of all time. In addition to providing that unmistakeable vinegar tang that complements the smoky flavor of pulled pork, you can also use it as a marinade for chicken or even splashed into collards or on crisp-fried catfish.

2. Matouk's Calypso Sauce: Made in Trinidad & Tobago using pickled scotch bonnet peppers blended with island spices and cane sugar in a rich mustard base, this hot sauce brings genuine West Indian flavor and spice to any savory dish. Use it at the table or in recipes for chicken, meats, fish, seafood, vegetables, rice & beans, etc.

3. Walkerswood Scotch Bonnet Pepper Hot Sauce: Jamaica is the land of fiery scotch bonnet peppers, which are closely related to the habanero and provide the heat in jerk sauces and seasonings. This all-purpose scotch bonnet sauce from Jamaica's best-known sauce company is the real deal, delivering the chili pepper's distinctive burn and bright flavor in a straightforward vinegar base. But don't limit this hot sauce to tropical fare, because its pure peppery flavor will complement anything you'd use a hot sauce on, from pizza to scrambled eggs to hot wings and more.

Melinda's Black Pepper Ketchup
4. Scorned Woman Hot Sauce: This baby gets its name from the famous Shakespeare line, and its scorching burn is indeed furious. Made using several different chili peppers as well as black pepper, and with a savory tang, Scorned Woman is another reliable and versatile choice when you're craving real peppery heat and not some sorry, watered down, overly vinegary excuse of a "hot" sauce from a supermarket.

5. Matouk's Flambeau Hot Sauce: As the name suggests, Flambeau is the hottest of the original Matouk's hot sauces. The primary ingredient is an incendiary pepper mash made from aged choice Scotch Bonnet peppers specifically chosen for their incredible heat. But this super-hot West Indian hot sauce is also about great flavor, and there are no extracts or artificial heat enhancers in Matouk's Flambeau. That means you'll enjoy a clean, natural flavor without any metallic or "off" notes that extracts can bring, but with just as powerful a peppery punch.

Endorphin Rush Hot Sauce
6. **TIE** Melinda's Black Pepper Ketchup and Endorphin Rush Hot Sauce both finished in a dead heat for sixth place, but these two products couldn't be more different. Melinda's Ketchup is a grown-up, sophisticated but nevertheless food-friendly version of your overly-sweet childhood favorite. Made from all-natural ingredients and no high fructose corn syrup, this elegant ketchup gets its pleasantly piquant zip from cracked black peppercorns. I bet you never imagined you could experience fine-dining finesse from a ketchup even when you're chowing down on hamburgers and fries. In contrast, Endorphin Rush is a brazen and brash blast of unadulterated and unforgiving FIRE that will burn you out if you're not extremely careful. More than a micro-droplet will overwhelm served food, so we recommend using this legendary extract-spiked ultra-hot sauce only when cooking, and even then in very small quantities at a time until you get a feel for the heat level. And in case you're wondering, Endorphin Rush is indeed hot enough to produce a heart-racing, face-flushing, sweat-producing and mind-blowing rush of endorphins that serious chiliheads find to be quite exhilarating and even addictive. You've been warned....

7. Marie Sharp's BEWARE Hot Sauce (10oz) is making its first appearance on our top-ten list of best-selling hot sauces. Probably the hottest of Marie's habanero hot sauces from Belize, the lead ingredient in this fiendish creation is capsicum oil, the very substance responsible for the searing heat of habanero peppers. As with any extreme hot sauce, use discretion and the utmost care when handling this one. In addition to the 10-oz bottle, the Carolina Sauces website also offers Marie Sharp's Beware in traditional 5-oz bottles and an adorable but powerful, and conveniently giftable, plastic mini-bottle.

Smokehouse 9790 2 Lbs Cherry Chips 'N Chunks8. Jim's Own BBQ Sauce & Rubs: Best known for its award-winning western NC style (vinegar with tomatoes) barbecue sauces, Jim's Own also makes a mustard barbecue sauce inspired by the flavors of South Carolina, as well as an all-American smoky-sweet BBQ sauce that's perfect for slathering on ribs and chicken. Jim's Own also several different varieties of BBQ dry rubs and seasoning blends, including the delightfully exotic yet approachable Safari Rub inspired by the spices and herbs used in South African barbecue.

9. Smokehouse Wood Chips & Chunks: Did you know that you can buy wood chips, chunks, planks and pellets for BBQ smokers and grills on our website? Last month the Smokehouse brand proved popular. Among the varieties of wood chips and chunks they offer are traditional hickory, bright cherry, mellow apple, robust mesquite and even mild alder, a favorite in the Pacific Northwest for salmon and other fish.

10. Ahrun's Zombie Boogie Pineapple Habanero BBQ Sauce: Festive tropical flavors and scary habanero heat pair perfectly together in this zombie-themed hot barbecue sauce available through our partner Insane Chicken. Wonderful on pork chops, ribs, grilled chicken, shrimp & veggie kabobs, and with other grilled fare, it's fabulously delicious even if you're not into zombies (although it makes a fun and flavorful gift for zombie fans who appreciate good barbecue sauce with a spicy kick).

Zestfully yours,

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

October Crock Pot Game: Who Wants to Win FREE Sauces?

Carolina Sauce Facebook Giveaway
It's time for our monthly Facebook Giveaway!

<=== This month we're giving away a Prize Pack with the following sauces, shown in the photo on the left:
  •  A full-size (17oz) bottle of fiery-hot Jerk BBQ sauce, packed with big, boisterous island flavors that will jazz up all types of meats (beef, pork, venison, lamb, goat & more), poultry (chicken, turkey, guinea hens, waterfowl, etc.), shrimp and other seafood, and even vegetables like oven-roasted potatoes, grilled portobellos, veggie kabobs, summer squash...

  • A full-size (5oz) bottle of Jamaican fish & meat sauce: This is a savory, food-friendly table condiment and cooking sauce that's got a full rich flavor with a sweet touch. Made with all-natural ingredients including tomatoes, mangoes, hot peppers and Jamaican pimento aka allspice. Enjoy it as a tropical steak sauce, a dipping sauce for ribs or shrimp, or even on burgers instead of ketchup!

  • A mini-bottle of the award-winning Dimples BBQ Sauce from North Carolina. Unlike your typical thin and vinegary NC barbecue sauce that's best used for pulled pork and little else, Dimples is thick and tomato-sweet, making it wonderful with ribs, chicken, brisket, burgers and even baked beans. Big on flavor but mild on spice, this is a great all-American and all-purpose barbeque sauce the whole family will enjoy.
One lucky person will win this Prize Pack, and the winner will be selected by random drawing shortly after 3pm EDT on Thursday October 3rd.

Crock Pot Slow Cooker
To be eligible to win, here's all you have to do:
  1. Like us on Facebook, then look for the October 1st Crock Pot Game "pinned" post with this photo of our Crock Pot  ===>

  2. Once you find our October 1st Crock Pot Game post, leave a Comment there telling us what's your favorite kind of BBQ, and that will automatically enter you in our drawing for the Prize Pack. You can also enter the drawing by "Liking" that same post (maximum number of entries per person is 2:  One for commenting and one for Liking the post). Game ends at 3pm EDT on Thursday, October 3rd.

  3. To be eligible to win, you must have a US shipping address. If you have an APO or FPO military address, or if you're in Puerto Rico, the US Virgin Islands, Guam or other similar location with a valid US address, you are eligible!
Any questions? Simply email me, leave a comment below, or contact me on the Carolina Sauce Facebook page.

Good luck, and have fun!

Zestfully yours,