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Aaron Franklin's Basic Texas Sauce

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  • Michael_in_TX
    Club Member
    • Dec 2018
    • 273
    • Texas Gulf Coast
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    Aaron Franklin's Basic Texas Sauce

    I recently watched all of Aaron Franklin's PBS and Web Special Videos (https://www.pbs.org/show/bbq-franklin/ and https://www.pbs.org/show/bbq-franklin/specials/) and as I was writing up my notes, I realized I had committed the sauce recipe he uses on one of the brisket specials to paper.

    So here it is. Now, I have not made this yet. I don't have his cookbook yet, either, but I think this recipe is different, but similar to, what he uses at the restaurant. The vibe for it in the show is that if you wanted a Texas-style sauce that was simple and went together quickly, this is one you could use.

    "Basic Texas Sauce" by Aaron Franklin
    • Half pound of butter
    • 1/2 of yellow onion, diced
    • 1.5 cups "no high fructose corn syrup" ketchup
    • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
    • 2 oz (1/4 cup) of lightly packed, light brown sugar
    • Heaping teaspoon of kosher salt
    • Heaping teaspoon of black pepper
    • Little less than a teaspoon of chili powder
    • Little less than a teaspoon of garlic powder
    • Juice of half a lemon
    1. Melt butter in stock pot.
    2. Add yellow onion, cook until translucent.
    3. Add ketchup, vinegar, sugar, salt, pepper, chili powder, garlic power, and lemon juice.
    4. Whisk to mix.
    5. Simmer to reduce down "a wee bit."
    You can watch him make it starting at 2:30 in to this video: https://www.pbs.org/video/bbq-franklin-payoff/

    <del>(I think the "no high fructose corn syrup" may be a joke as the bottle on the table looks like a Heinz container, which very much has high fructose corn syrup in it.)</del>

    EDIT: After some research, it seems that Aaron is not joking. He prefers non-high fructose ketchup as it tends to be less sweet and less prone to burning.

    (Also, if you want to see that video editing is never truly linear, look at 4:17 and look at the edge of the whisk he is using. It clearly has been in the sauce, yet in the very next shot when the whisk is about to go into the pot for the first time, it is now clean, but there is no break in the voiceover.)
    Last edited by Michael_in_TX; November 23rd, 2019, 11:33 PM.
  • tbob4
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    • Nov 2014
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    • Chico, CA
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    #2
    Looks good. I have an old recipe called Texas Beef Barbecue from Jeanne Voltz's cookbook BBQ Ribs and Other Great Feeds. It calls for basically the same ingredients plus some Worcestershire sauce, green peppers and celery, finely chopped. I don't use it as a sauce for cooking. Instead, after making a lot of brisket and serving on day one, I heat the leftovers up in the sauce and serve it as sandwiches on rolls. It is really good. It tastes like an upscale Sloppy Joe. You have to watch out for kids - they will devour it faster than you can.

    Comment

    • Mosca
      Charter Member
      • Oct 2014
      • 2791
      • PA
      • Large Big Green Egg, Weber Performer Deluxe, Weber Smokey Joe Silver, Maverick 732, DigiQ, and too much other stuff to mention.

      #3
      This looks good. For what it’s worth, I use Meathead ’s KC Classic sauce, with some minor variations to suit my taste, and people repeatedly tell me it is the best they’ve ever tasted.

      Comment


      • surfdog
        surfdog commented
        Editing a comment
        Good to know... I've not tried that one yet, but everything out of his book has been a winner so far.
    • NYC Que
      Club Member
      • Jan 2019
      • 33
      • Bronx, NY

      #4
      That’s very different from the recipe in his book. I actually use it as a base for my own sauce.

      Comment

      • treesmacker
        Club Member
        • May 2018
        • 629
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        #5
        Thanks for sharing... you can buy "Simply Heinz" - it is made with sugar, not corn syrup.

        Comment


        • Michael_in_TX
          Michael_in_TX commented
          Editing a comment
          I did not know that existed! Interesting. My local store carries it....may have to try it.

        • treesmacker
          treesmacker commented
          Editing a comment

        • surfdog
          surfdog commented
          Editing a comment
          Michael_in_TX I picked up some because they were out of Stubb's and I didn't have time to make a sauce from scratch...as I needed some on the same day that I landed back in SoCal.
          I ALWAYS check the ingredients...and when they list corn syrup I pass.
          Anyway...while certainly not up to "homemade" it was pretty decent.
      • mountainsmoker
        Club Member
        • Jun 2019
        • 1465
        • Bryson City, NC

        #6
        Simple sauce from Texas that I have several of including one from Paul Kirk. Look's mighty good.
        Last edited by mountainsmoker; November 23rd, 2019, 03:39 PM.

        Comment

        • TheQuietOne
          Club Member
          • Sep 2018
          • 88
          • Oshkosh, WI

          #7
          I'm loving Franklin's series. He's such a charming host and a good fabricator/welder too.

          Comment


          • Michael_in_TX
            Michael_in_TX commented
            Editing a comment
            It's wild as they don't really come out and immediately state how good of a fabricator he is...it just sort of unveils and then you realize just what he is building all by himself!
        • Histrix
          Club Member
          • May 2016
          • 446
          • 757

          #8
          That is quite different from the recipe in his first book - here's the list of ingredients for his "regular bbq sauce" from that book:

          • 1 3/4 cups ketchup
          • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons water
          • 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon cider vinegar
          • 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon white vinegar
          • 1/4 cup plus 1 1/2 teaspoons brown sugar
          • 2 tablespoons plus 1 1/2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
          • 1 tablespoon chile powder
          • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
          • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
          • 1 1/2 teaspoons coarse black pepper

          Comment

          • Michael_in_TX
            Club Member
            • Dec 2018
            • 273
            • Texas Gulf Coast
            • Grills:
              Weber 22" Kettle Premium w/Slow N' Sear 2.0
              Pit Barrel Cooker
              W.C. Bradley & Co. Char Kettle CK-115 ~1980s Vintage Grill (inactive)

              Accessories:
              Thermopop (Instant Read)
              Thermoworks Smoke

            #9
            (Heh, can't believe I didn't bother to check this. The commercial versions of all three of the sauces he serves in the restaurant are available at my local grocery store -- HEB -- for $4.18 per 14 oz bottle. I think I shall be picking them up tomorrow!)

            Comment


            • surfdog
              surfdog commented
              Editing a comment
              Hmmm, well...I'll be in Texas in a week or so...so I'm thinking I might need to stop by one of the HEBs that I'll surely drive by.

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