Cooking On A Budget: Everyday Sauces to Make Life Delicious

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Everyday Sauces to Make Life Delicious

Bring every day meals to a whole other level simply by using a sauce or a marinade!

Recipe development excites me. Through the years I developed some signature sauces and marinades that unfortunately I did not get to mass market. I am sure if I had succeeded, someone along the line would have convinced me that I needed to add some chemical to my recipes, of which I am certain that it would have changed the integrity of the sauce or marinade. So happily through this blog I am able to share with you the recipes I use for sauces and marinades that I developed myself.

Marinating is done to tenderize in some cases and always, always to add flavor to a protein. Pan sauces made after a protein is cooked are quick sauces that take on the flavor of the protein combining elements like wine, lemon, butter, cream and herbs to lift up whatever it is you are cooking.

Gravies take the flavor from the proteins and combined with a similar taste such as a broth, are thickened with flour, cornstarch or arrowroot.

A sauce can be as simple as a pan sauce like I mentioned earlier, or it's one that is developed in stages creating layers of flavor and seasoned along the way (Example: a mole sauce.). No matter which method you choose to make a sauce, it ultimately ends up on the dish over or under the protein to highlight the flavor of the protein and to enhance the overall taste experience. Making sauces is something I love doing and love creating and I am really happy to share some of what I have done with you here in this post.

I am not taking credit for a couple of the basics represented here as they were created by someone else in another place and time. Any of the sauces and marinades here will certainly elevate your dinners and none of them are complex to make.

Let's start with a sauce that I think people did shy away from here on the blog, and it is one that I think pairs so incredibly well with seafood. That's the Seafood Sauce.

It has simple, everyday ingredients in it (like tomatoes, peppers and onions) and as it cooks down flavor develops. Then when you add in fish to poach or blue crabs - the shellfish or fish adds another dimension to the overall taste.

I really hope you try this.

Take any cut of beef like eye of the round or London broil and marinate it in my London Marinade. What happens is the beef takes on flavor, the marinade helps to break down some of the connective tissues and your small roast or cut of steak comes out tasting better than you ever expected. Unfortunately I did not snap a photograph of the marinade itself, but the steak I marinated it in came out beautifully. One of my nieces loves this and they marinate sirloin tips in it, and then skewer them for grilling at summer picnics and it's a huge hit.

A marinade I am proud of as it was one that I created a long, long time ago just brims with spice and great taste.

I named it Caribbean Marinade for all of the spices that I put in it were the spices actually used in Caribbean cooking based on my research.

This marinade is perfectly blended with spices and tomato goodness.

We have used it on shrimp, pork tenderloin and chicken. They all come out so flavor-packed with the spices.

I don't think I've ever met anyone that did not like an Alfredo Sauce. This creamy, cheese sauce is not only delicious on pasta, but add in some grilled chicken or even with some broccoli and oh boy talk about a full fledged treat! I love my recipe and think it's better than I have had in many restaurants.

One of the things that I like about myself as a cook is my ability to pair ingredients. Back in 2014 I played around and created an incredibly versatile sauce called Pumpkin and Sage Cream Sauce. When I developed the sauce I wanted to use up available items from my pantry and was ecstatic with the end results. We used the sauce to go over rotisserie chicken and it was such a pleasant break from normal chicken gravy ~ and it tasted amazing! Then a day or so later I created Hang Over Eggs and used that sauce in place of a hollandaise. And yes, I really did have a hangover!

And speaking of Hollandaise, Ina Garten gave some great tips which led me to make Easy Hollandaise Sauce which we made to have over some lovely asparagus. Made in a blender it really couldn't be more easy than it is. Plus it's delicious. Use it for eggs Benedict, on asparagus or any other vegetable you might love like broccoli or cauliflower for another taste sensation. It takes minutes to make so why bother with a packet mix or struggle over a sauce pot?

With holidays looming in the not so distant future, there's fresh, homemade Cranberry Sauce. Back when I had my restaurant we served a full turkey dinner every Thursday night as our to go meal. It was one of our best-selling dinners complete with turkey, mashed potato and gravy, turnip, stuffing, a vegetable like green bean or carrots and of course my homemade cranberry sauce.

Those who were not fond of cranberry sauce and who tried my recipe ended up loving it and no longer asked for it not to be in the dinner. I believe that's a pretty good testament to how good this sauce is.

And it's simple and doesn't take tons of time to make. You can make it ahead of your holiday - a few days in advance. Simply seal in a container in the refrigerator and this sauce is good for at least two weeks.

Despite the fact this is a lousy photograph, my Peach Apricot Sauce is really delicious. We have used it on ribs and chicken and pork chops and they all come out tasting great. It's an extremely simple recipe to make. The flavor profile has sweet, touch of heat and a little zing from the mustard. A great break away from regular barbecue sauces.

This latest creation, Plum and Jalapeno Barbecue Sauce is just an exceptional sauce.
It's acidic, tangy, has some sweetness and just the right amount of heat to bring it all together for a great taste sensation.

I am as pleased with the photograph as I am of the sauce. The sauce is not complicated to make at all and takes about 45 minutes from start to finish. So far we have used it on chicken and I felt it was the best barbecue chicken we ever had. Also it helped that my husband grilled the chicken like a pro!

Now I am looking forward to trying it with pork. My thoughts are leaning toward grilled pork chops or a nice slab of baby back pork ribs.

Try this different and delicious sauce.

The last sauce represented in the collection is my signature barbecue sauce I created eons ago now. I decided to name it Great Northern Barbecue Sauce. What I love about this barbecue sauce is the heat that builds in this tomato-based sauce. It was the first barbecue sauce I created for my Deep River Provisions Line and I ended up selling it locally. Some of the people would actually purchase it by the case, so that lets you know how good it is! We have used this sauce in our grilling recipes on pork, chicken, kielbasa and burgers. Make your next barbecued meats or chicken shine with Great Northern Barbecue Sauce.

There you have it ~ sauces and marinades that are easy to make with everyday ingredients making what you cook that much more delicious!

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