Thursday, September 18, 2014
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Bourbon, maple syrup team up for killer barbecue

Food Deadline Grilled Shrimp

This April 7, 2014, photo shows maple bourbon barbecue grilled shrimp with couscous in Concord, N.H. (AP Photo/Matthew Mead)

By
From page B7 | June 18, 2014 |

Simply put, bourbon belongs in barbecue sauce.

Bourbon, by definition (at least in the U.S.), is distilled from a grain mixture that must be at least 51 percent corn. And corn is naturally sweet. So of course bourbon makes a wonderful base for a sweet-and-tangy barbecue sauce. It lends deep richness and combines wonderfully with so many of the sweet and bold flavors we associate with a great barbecue sauce.

So that was my inspiration for this recipe – to create an amazing bourbon-based barbecue sauce. But as I researched recipes, I was disappointed to find that so few bourbon barbecue sauces play up the bourbon. Most add just ¼ cup, or perhaps ½ cup at most. I wanted more bourbon flavor, so I went with 1 cup.

For sweetness, I used equal parts maple syrup and brown sugar, both of which have the same rich caramel notes for which bourbon is known. Add some soy sauce for saltiness, some cider vinegar for acid and a bit of Frank’s Red Hot sauce for bite, and we’re off to a great sauce.

This sauce would be delicious on any grilled meat, particularly chicken or ribs. But I decided to slather it on shrimp. The briny notes of the shrimp just bring out the delicious sweetness of the sauce.

MAPLE-BOURBON BARBECUE GRILLED SHRIMP WITH COUSCOUS

Start to finish: 30 minutes (15 minutes active)

Servings: 6

2½ cups water

Kosher salt

12 ounces Israeli (large pearl) couscous

1 medium English cucumber, diced

½ small red onion, minced

2 cloves garlic, minced

3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro

1 tablespoon olive oil

Juice of 1 lemon

2 pounds extra-jumbo raw shrimp, peeled

½ cup maple-bourbon barbecue sauce (see recipe below)

4 ounces crumbled feta cheese

In a medium saucepan over medium-high, bring the water to a boil. Add the couscous and 1 teaspoon of salt, stir, then cover and reduce heat to simmer. Cook for 8 to 10 minutes, or until the couscous is plumped and tender and all of the water is absorbed. When the couscous is done, transfer to a medium bowl. Set in the refrigerator to cool for about 15 minutes.

Once the couscous has cooled, add the cucumber, onion, garlic and cilantro. Toss well, then drizzle with the olive oil and lemon juice. Toss, season with salt, if needed, then divide between 6 serving plates.

Coat the grill grates with oil or cooking spray, then heat the grill to medium-high.

Thread the shrimp onto bamboo skewers, about 6 to 7 shrimp per skewer. Use a pastry brush to lightly baste the shrimp with half of the barbecue sauce. Grill the shrimp for 3 minutes per side, or until just pink and firm. Set skewers of shrimp over each serving of couscous. Sprinkle each serving with feta cheese.

Nutrition information per serving: 570 calories; 80 calories from fat (14 percent of total calories); 9 g fat (3.5 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 245 mg cholesterol; 69 g carbohydrate; 4 g fiber; 18 g sugar; 41 g protein; 1150 mg sodium.

MAPLE-BOURBON BARBECUE SAUCE

Start to finish: 30 minutes

Makes 1½ cups

6-ounce can tomato paste

1 cup bourbon

½ cup cider vinegar

½ cup packed brown sugar

½ cup maple syrup

¼ cup soy sauce

2 tablespoons molasses

2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

2 tablespoons Frank’s Red Hot sauce

2 teaspoons smoked paprika

2 teaspoons garlic powder

2 teaspoons onion powder

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon mustard powder

In a medium saucepan over medium-high, whisk together all ingredients. Bring to a simmer, then lower the heat to just maintain a gentle simmer. Cook until thickened and reduced by about half, about 20 minutes. Cool and refrigerate, covered, for up to 2 weeks.

Nutrition information per 2 tablespoons: 160 calories; 5 calories from fat (3 percent of total calories); 0 g fat (0 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 0 mg cholesterol; 27 g carbohydrate; 1 g fiber; 22 g sugar; 1 g protein; 590 mg sodium.

J.M. Hirsch is the food editor for The Associated Press. He blogs at www.LunchBoxBlues.com and tweets at www.twitter.com/JM_Hirsch. Email him at jhirsch@ap.org.

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | 1 comment

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

  • JimboJune 04, 2014 - 8:51 am

    You know usually I read BBQ sauce recipes and they always have that awful liquid smoke in them. This using smoked paprika, which is much more subtle and so very tasty in just about everything, is just brilliant.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
.

Solano News

 
Theatre DeVille in Vacaville closes

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A1, 15 Comments | Gallery

 
Focus on school attendance now, always

By Mayrene Bates | From Page: A2

 
Lunafest returns to Fairfield in November

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3

Pepperbelly’s for sale

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A3, 3 Comments

 
Jury selection begins in 2011 Fairfield murder trial

By Jess Sullivan | From Page: A3

Seniors get help at Kroc Center health fair

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A3 | Gallery

 
Drug court success stories tell their tales

By Jess Sullivan | From Page: A3 | Gallery

Suisun City Senior Center seeks holiday donations

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3

 
Weather for Sept. 18, 2014

By Daily Republic | From Page: B10

 
Fairfield police log: Sept. 16, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A10

Suisun City police log: Sept. 16, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A10

 
.

US / World

Emotions mount on final day of Scottish campaign

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

 
Maps provide early warning of California fire risk

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

More than 2,000 homes threatened in California fire

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4, 1 Comment

 
NASA’s Maven spacecraft reaches Mars this weekend

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

US military role in Iraq raises combat questions

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Police: Ambush suspect was military re-enactor

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5, 1 Comment | Gallery

House grudgingly approves arms for Syrian rebels

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5, 2 Comments

 
Ex-VA doctor: Phoenix report a ‘whitewash’

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5, 1 Comment

School district police stock up free military gear

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5, 3 Comments | Gallery

 
Doctor says Toronto Mayor Rob Ford has cancer

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

US scientist: Ebola unlikely to become airborne

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

 
Liberia president praises US for Ebola help pledge

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

Obama reaffirms opposition to US combat in Iraq

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6, 1 Comment

 
AP Interview: Iraq premier says no foreign troops

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

.

Opinion

 
Give new crime report a chance

By Kelvin Wade | From Page: A7, 16 Comments

 
Homeless find welcome in Vallejo

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A7, 7 Comments

 
.

Living

Today in History: Sept. 18, 2014

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

 
Community Calendar: Sept. 18, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

Horoscopes: Sept. 18, 2014

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: A9

 
My brother fails to make an effort to when it comes to my kids

By Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar | From Page: A9

.

Entertainment

TVGrid

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B4

 
U2 returns to iTunes Top 100 — 26 times

By Los Angeles Times | From Page: B4, 1 Comment

Directors Guild finds TV diversity hiring stalled

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

 
.

Sports

Rodriguez gets 1st MEL soccer win since return to league

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B1

 
Giants snap tie in 9th, beat Arizona to narrow gap in West to 2

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

 
49ers’ Kaepernick fined for inappropriate language

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1, 4 Comments | Gallery

Barry Bonds appeal heads back to court

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
NFL, union agree to new drug policy, HGH testing

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Raiders rookie Derek Carr focuses on job at hand

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

 
Pegulas’ bid to buy Bills OK’d by NFL committee

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

FSU benches Winston for 1st half of Clemson game

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Umpire West suspended 1 game for grabbing jersey

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

After making ‘mistake,’ Vikings bench RB Peterson

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Sharks sign D Braun to 5-year, $19 M extension

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Rockets acquire Jason Terry, picks from Kings

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Panthers remove DE Greg Hardy from active roster

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

.

Business

Fed signals plan to keep key rate at record low

By The Associated Press | From Page: B5

 
Brown signs ride-sharing insurance legislation

By The Associated Press | From Page: B5

US homebuilder confidence soars in September

By The Associated Press | From Page: B5

 
Anthem, hospitals join to offer new insurance plan

By The Associated Press | From Page: B5

Drag queens dress down Facebook over names

By The Associated Press | From Page: B5, 1 Comment

 
Wells Fargo pays $290,000 in sex harassment case

By The Associated Press | From Page: B5

.

Obituaries

Margaret King

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A4

 
.

Comics

For Better or Worse

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
B.C.

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Garfield

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Frank and Ernest

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Rose is Rose

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Pickles

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Baby Blues

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Beetle Bailey

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Peanuts

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Blondie

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Zits

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Dilbert

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Wizard of Id

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Sally Forth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Baldo

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Get Fuzzy

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Sudoku

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

 
Bridge

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

Crossword

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

 
Cryptoquote

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

Word Sleuth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9