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A great Hawaiian sauce for barbecued pork

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TasunkaWitko View Drop Down
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    Posted: 04 June 2010 at 12:41

to me, the highlight of any barbecue meal is the meat, but it is also true that the secret is in the sauce...this was pretty good stuff that we made this past weekend, and it is incredible how easy it was.

this recipe comes from my wife's grandmother. no one knows where she got it, but her family has always made it by BOILING the ribs for a while, then putting them in a crock pot or roasting pan with the sauce. being the barbecue purist that i am, this sounded rather like blasphemy, so i decided to try it using a few barbecue methods. in my opinion, the results were definitely worth the change!

here's all that was needed for the sauce - i told you it was easy!

 
I will post the original recipe for comparison, but my twist on the original was to add a couple of crushed garlic cloves. i could have added more, but this worked well. i also used a little extra soy sauce and brown sugar (dark rather than light) than the recipe called for. we doubled the recipe and then i added half-again as much soy and brown sugar, so if you're just making a single recipe of this, multiply the amounts of those ingredients by 1.5. it is easier than it sounds ~
 
first we sauteed the chopped onion in a little butter. the pan got a little hot and some of the onions burned a little, but no big deal. we picked out the few worst pieces and left the rest.
 
 
next, we added dark brown sugar - don't that look good?
 
 
then came the soy sauce and then apple cider vinegar. once again, i will post the recipe so you can have the amounts, but it will have to wait until i am home.
 
 
finally, it was time for the tomato sauce and the crushed pineapple. starting to look pretty dang good!
 
 
we brought everything to a point that is just under a boil, then reduced heat and simmered all afternoon to thicken up and let the flavours marry. good sauce takes time and something happens to tomato-based sauces as they simmer slowly - i can't explain it, but it is pure magic.
 
 
meanwhile, we tossed on some country style ribs (CSRs) that we had prepared with a simple slathering of yellow mustard and a liberal dusting of strawberry's barbecue seasoning:
 
 
from then on it was slow simmering for the sauce and slow smoking over hickory for the CSRs. later that afternoon, i had to go for a while and left #2 son mike in charge. when i got back a couple of hours later, he had the SnP running like a veteran, holding a steady temperature of 242 degrees and employing very efficient use of the royal oak lump charcoal we were using. we stirred the sauce now and then, and turned/rotated the ribs every once in a while while spritzing with plain old orange juice. before long, the ribs were almost done:
 
 
about an hour after this picture was taken, maybe a little more, the sauce was finally looking the way i wanted it to look: thick, broken-down and dark:
 
 
we brought the sauce outside
 
 
and put the ribs and sauce together in a roaster to sit and wait while we prepared the side dish, which was a nice potato salad.
 
 
i covered the pan and let the last of the heat from the smoker keep the ribs and sauce warm. when the potato salad was ready, we plated up and pigged out:
 
 
very good results and this is, in my mind, a wonderful way to do country-style ribs! fork-tender CSR were infused with the savory soy, sweet dark brown sugar and tangy pineapple. the tomato, onion, garlic and other flavours were there to enjoy, but they kept their place and let this hawaiian masterpiece sing ~
 
thanks for looking and please feel free to give it a try. i will post the original recipe which can be used as a base - from there, you will want to experiment a bit and go out on your own with this. the results will be worth it!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote daniel77 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 June 2010 at 13:07
very nice. FWIW, I think CSRs are one of the very best values in meat today. Steak quality for ground meat prices. Will try this one soon.
If what you're serving comes on a cracker, you'd better have a lot of it.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Hoser Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 June 2010 at 02:27
Sure looks tasty Ron...must have been a lot like a good terriyaki?
Go ahead...play with your food!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote TasunkaWitko Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 June 2010 at 07:02
thanks, guys.
 
dave, that's actually a pretty good comparison; there was a lot of umami going on there!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Rockydog Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 07 June 2010 at 18:38
Ron, Wonder what would happen if you pureed a sauce like this with a hand blender and cooked it down until really thick. Does that concentrate the flavors to the point that some get hidden? Just thnking about a nice commercial style glaze to fool the grandkids who might not appreciate the 'chunks" in the sauce. Cry  RD
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote TasunkaWitko Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 June 2010 at 06:36
mike - i was actually thinking along the same lines and elected to go with a more rustic and chunky sauce. i think that running the sauce through the hand blender would be just fine and of course the longer you reduce it and simmer it, the better it is going to get, i think!
 
if you try it let me know how it works. i'll try to post the sauce recipe today or tonight.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote TasunkaWitko Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08 June 2010 at 10:32

alright, folks - here's the original, basic recipe for the sauce - multiply it according to the amount of meat you use. we use CSRs but i would bet any pork would be great.


also keep in mind that for my version, i added a couple of garlic cloves and added half-again as much soy sauce and DARK brown sugar.


1 large onion, diced
3 tbsp brown sugar (recipe says light, i use dark)
1/4 cup vinegar (recipe says white, i use apple cider)
3 tbsp soy sauce
1 large (22 oz?) can of crushed pineapple
1 large (28 oz?) can of tomato sauce


saute onion in a little oil, butter, whatever - until carmelized and transluscent. remove from heat and add the rest of the ingredients. bring to a boil, then reduce to a bare simmer for at least an hour or as long as you like - it only gets better. brush sauce on pork or braise pork in the sauce, depending on how you're cooking it.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote s.shooter Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 June 2011 at 10:41
I know this is an old thread Ron, but can you tell me a bit about your potato salad? It looks nearly identical to what my Mom used to make. Hers was a sweet pickle salad with lots of hard boiled egg. Jeff.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote TasunkaWitko Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 June 2011 at 14:41
hey, jeff - that potato salad in the picture was thrown together, but used the basic recipe that we have always done really well with. i'll give you a quick run-down here and then will post a tutorial in the near future!
 

basically, we peel the potatoes, cube them boil them until tender and drain/cool them in cold water. then we stir in mayonnaise and a little mustard until it "looks right," add chopped boiled egg and diced dill picklies (sweet could also be used if you prefer). finish with seasoning of your choice or salt/pepper, and a healthy splash of the pickle juice to give it a little pucker.

 

that's the basics - i don't have any amounts or measurements at the moment but will get this all laid out soon!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote bkleinsmid Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 May 2013 at 14:51
Ron.......this looks fantastic.......and reminds me that i have a package of CSR's in the freezer. I will do my ribs almost exact to yours in the smoker. I put them on the top shelf over a batch of country style beans and let the ribs drip into them. then take the ribs and put them in the beans to finish the last 45 min or so.
This time I'm going to do them your way......it just sounds so good...

Brad
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote TasunkaWitko Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 May 2013 at 14:57
It's good for sure, Brad - I am 100% positive that you will like them ~ I've often thought that a person could brush on the sauce in a couple of layers toward the end of cooking, but then again, I think it's important to really let them swim in the sauce, so I always end up putting them in the pan. Either way is fine.
 
The recipe etc. is all pretty straight forward, but if you have any questions, let me know. And don't forget your camera! Thumbs Up
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote bkleinsmid Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 May 2013 at 15:05
the camera battery is in the charger as I type.....

B~
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote TasunkaWitko Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17 August 2014 at 17:03
Brad - any ypdate?

I was going to do Greek-style spare ribs today:

http://foodsoftheworld.activeboards.net/greek-sparerib-barbecue_topic2607.html

But this weekend was the anniversary of the birth of The Beautiful Mrs. Tas, and she wanted Hawaiian, so we went Hawaiian.

Too much going on today, rushing around like a madman, so no photos. Having said that, here are the important details:

1) Mustard slather with Mad Hunky General Purpose Rub:

http://www.madhunkymeats.com

2) Made the sauce in the recipe above, let it simmer an hour or two, then zipped it with the wand blender. Continued to simmer on lowest setting throughout the afternoon.

3) Spritz/mop consisting on 1.5 cups orange juice, 1/4 cup teriyaki and 1/4 cup olive oil,

4) The last couple of hours, I brushed the sauce on in thin layers so that it could caramelise and turn into a nice coating. Will serve the remaining sauce "on the side.

Other non-important details related to method:

a) Saint-Louis-trimmed spare ribs.

b) Kingsford briquettes, cherry chunks (it's what we had on hand)..

c) 225-230 for the first couple-three hours; 250 to 260 for the remainder.

d) Half-full water pan (allowed it to evaporate out and ran dr the second half of the cook.

e) Served with deviled eggs, peas and macaroni and cheese.

Try it - you'll like it! The "bottom" set of statistics are of course subject to your preferred method, but the top set is a recipe for great things!

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote TasunkaWitko Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 10 March 2019 at 14:09
I am roasting a 5-pound pork shoulder roast (boneless butt) today and am preparing this sauce to go with it; sort of a Hawaiian pulled pork dinner.

For the roast, traditional barbecue enthusiasts might want to skip this paragraph, because I am breaking a few rules. After patting the roast dry, I gave it a light dusting of Morton's Tender Quick, followed by an equally-light brushing of Wright's liquid smoke. After letting the roast sit a few minutes, I brushed on some mustard and gave it a liberal coating of a typical barbecue rub from Cabela's that is a bit on the sweet side, to balance the TQ. I then placed it in my enameled cast-iron Dutch oven, then into our oven - uncovered - at 230 degrees for an hour or so; then 240 degrees for an hour or so. Just a moment ago, I brought the oven up to 250, and in an hour or so I will cover the Dutch oven and leave it be for the duration of the cooking. I have prepared "faux-q" this way several times, with surprisingly good results; the house currently smells smoky and barbecuey, and I am sure the pork will be good. Having said that, I am eager for spring to arrive, so I can prepare barbecue the way it is meant to be prepared.

Anyway, for the sauce, I am preparing my slightly-modified version of the original recipe posted above, which we got from the maternal grandmother of The Beautiful Mrs. Tas. Here is my adaptation:

1 large onion, diced
4 cloves of garlic, minced
4 tablespoons dark brown sugar
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
5 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
1 20-ish oz can of crushed pineapple
1 29-ish oz can of tomato sauce
Salt and pepper, to taste

My preparation of this sauce was typical:

I cooked the onions in a little bacon fat until they just started to get a some colour, plus another 3 or so minutes. I then added the garlic and stirred everything around for a minute or two.

I then added the rest of the ingredients and stirred the sauce well, bringing it just to a boil. I then reduced the heat to the lowest setting and simmered it for an hour or so, covered.

A moment ago, I blitzed the sauce with my wand blender and will continue to simmer it, covered, at least another hour. After that, I'll check on it and continue to simmer, covered or uncovered as needed to maintain the desired saucy consistency. The sauce will darken and reduce a bit as it cooks and, as it has before, will gain a wonderful, savory, umami-filled character. I cannot stress enough how important extended simmering is for this sauce; it seems to need a minimum of four hours of simmering in order to leap from "very good" to "absolutely spectacular" - but as always, the longer you can simmer it, the better.

Worthy of note: the soy sauce that I used for this was the last of my bottle of Aloha Shoyu low-sodium soy sauce that we brought back from Oregon last year. This is hands-down the best soy sauce that I have yet tried. We are able to get "regular" Aloha Shoyu here, but the low-sodium is nowhere to be found locally. I'll see if I can locate it online, as it is a superior ingredient, in my opinion.

I expect everything to go well and do not anticipate any problems with this preparation. The combination of this sauce and pork is a match made in Heaven!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote TasunkaWitko Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 March 2019 at 11:49
Quick update on my post above:

The pork and sauce turned out great ~ the sauce especially was really nice, due to the long, slow simmering. The pork shredded easily and was "almost" as good as true wood-smoked barbecue.

In all, it will tide me over until spring.
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