Monday, April 26, 2010

Martha Hall Foose's Vinegar 'Mopping' Sauce and Dry Rub

If you like to eat tasty food, cook tasty food, or ever ponder taking a road trip through the south to come head to head with the home of the blues (and incredible southern food) then go on Amazon this instant and buy 'Screen Doors and Sweet Tea' by Martha Hall Foose. And before you skip onto your next food blog or celeb gossip site thinking you have nothing in common with a woman cooking up southern food in Mississippi, think again. Martha got herself out of the deep South as soon as she possibly could flinging herself halfway across the world to Paris (where a bag of grits made her instant bff's with an artsy set that showed her parts of the city never seen by tourists.) And while she loved it, she eventually followed her heart back to that rich, culture-soaked Mississippi soil. Martha, it turns out, is proof that you can go home again after all.

The stories and recipes pull you in like quicksand but what I love most about the book are the deeply little southern things she introduces the reader to such as this vinegar-riddled 'mop' sauce. A mop sauce, it turns out, isn't like a BBQ or basting sauce exactly. It's meant to be thin and there's no need to boil it down for hours over the stove to thicken it. She includes it in her recipe for ribs (delicious) but I love it just as much basted over a double cut, bone-in pork chop or a whole chicken. It's an instant recipe booster as is her dry rub which I included below.

A final example of a southern wisdom from the book comes from a friend of Martha's on cleaning and prepping a turtle for turtle soup - "Drive it over to Louisiana and have someone do it for you."

Mopping Sauce:
1 1/2 cups cider vinegar
2 tablespoons ketchup
2 tablespoons prepared yellow mustard
1 tablespoon light brown sugar
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes (I halve this because I'm a wimp)
Shake vigoruusly and refrigerate overnight. Baste ribs, pork chops, steak, or chicken frequently over a hot grill.

Dry Rub:
2 tablespoons kosher salt
2 tablespoons chili powder
2 tablespoons paprika
1/2 tablespoon black pepper (she uses a whole tbsln)
1 tablespoon dry mustard
1 tablespoon light brown sugar
1 tablespoon cumin
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon ground allspice

Mix all and store in an airtight container for up to a month. Pat thickly over cuts of meat (ideally the day before grilling) keeping wrapped in the fridge overnight to absorb the flavors.


Jenn said...

Mopping sauce and dry rubs.. what more could a girl ask for? YUM!!! These sound fantastic. They are both going on my list of must trys!

Andrea said...

These both sound delish. I'll try them next time I fire up the old grill :) Who doesn't love good ol' southern BBQ??

Susan from Food Blogga said...

I used to live in NC, so I'm over mopping sauce and bbq! Love this!

Mary said...

This sounds wonderful to me. I love the all :-). I hope you are having a wonderful day. Blessings...Mary

Miss Meat and Potatoes said...

Jenn - as much as you love to grill, you should try sopping the mop sauce on a hunk of meat (and of course I think you'll like the dry rub too given how similar we are.)

Andrea - I agree! BBQ's are the best and honestly I love learning about all kinds of 'cue traditions. Even yankees know a thing or two, as it turns out;)

Susan - so jealous you used to live in NC! I haven't even visited yet, but it's at the top of my list!

Mary - always thrilled when you stop by! I hope you have a wonderful weekend!