Lastnight was the start to our weekend. On a Thursday? Yep! Jensen works two Saturdays a month and gets two Fridays off a month. Today is one of those Fridays. One of his friends from college came in town from Houston because he is in a wedding this weekend here in Austin. He stayed with us lastnight and my honey got a little guy time. Before they left to grab some beers sans the wife (I DO have to work today), I made a meal that can best be described as Southern Comfort.
BBQ and okra are common in southern cooking and they both graced our plates. I made BBQ chicken sliders from the new Cooking Light Magazine with a side of roasted okra.
Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 2 sliders)
- 1/4 cup thinly sliced red onion
- 3 tablespoons sherry vinegar, divided
- 1 1/2 tablespoons honey, divided
- 2 tablespoons water
- 3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
- 3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 1/2 pounds skinless, boneless chicken thighs, trimmed
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- Cooking spray
- 8 (1.5-ounce) pull-apart dinner rolls (such as Sara Lee)
1. Preheat grill to medium-high heat.
2. Combine sliced onion, 1 tablespoon vinegar, and 1 1/2 teaspoons honey in a small bowl; toss well. Cover and refrigerate onion mixture at least 30 minutes.
3. Combine remaining 2 tablespoons vinegar, remaining 1 tablespoon honey, 2 tablespoons water, mustard, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper in a small saucepan over medium-low heat. Bring to a simmer (do not boil). Simmer 5 minutes; stir in butter. Remove from heat; keep warm.
4. Sprinkle chicken with remaining 1/2 teaspoon pepper and salt. Place on a grill rack coated with cooking spray; grill 4 minutes on each side or until done. Remove chicken from grill; cool slightly. Shred chicken into bite-sized pieces. Add chicken to saucepan with mustard mixture, and toss gently to coat.
5. Cut rolls in half crosswise. Place rolls, cut sides down, on grill; grill 1 minute or until toasted. Spoon about 1/3 cup chicken mixture over bottom half of each roll. Top each roll with about 1 teaspoon drained onion slices and top half of roll. Serve immediately.
- Upper South Carolina and Eastern North Carolina – As stated above, this is usually a thin vinegar based sauce with salt, red pepper, or cayenne pepper added to taste.
- Lower South Carolina – Home of the yellow mustard and vinegar based BBQ sauce. Sometimes a little ketchup is thrown in too but it is primarily a mustard based sauce.
- Texas – Now you’re getting into beef territory. Brisket is king here. Texas is a big state and generally, you’ll find a more spicy BBQ sauce there. East Texas, you might find more sweet sauces with a little bite of chile. Mainly ketchup based with Worcestershire. On the west side of Texas, you run into hotter chili based sauces with a tomato base
Those are just two of the MANY. The website lists a lot more with slight variations in bases, ingredients, and the meats used. Who knew? Actually I sorta did because I seem to remember Bobby Flay educating me on the subject during one of his Throwdowns, but I wasn’t aware there were so many types. I’m a Texas girl through and through, but I have to say I enjoyed the Carolina style. Not better, just different. I can’t commit total blasphemy against my great state, but there’s room in my heart and tummy for both.
Tonight we are switching house guest as the hubs friend moves on to a hotel for wedding festivities and my brother and sister-in-law arrive in town from Dallas. Yay for a weekend full of friends and family. Not sure what the plans really are, but it’s nice to just see everyone no matter what we end up doing. I know we have dinner plans tomorrow night and then a going away party for another friend who is moving to Florida. It will be packed weekend, but FUN!
What’s your idea of BBQ? Beef, pork, chicken, ribs? Tomato based sauce or mustard and vinegar? Any others?