I am a “saucy” kind of girl, and not just with my foods either. But sticking to food for now, I love sauces and marinades, particularly on my meats. The sauces and marinades you use definitely make or break the meal. They transform plain, boring dishes into something delicious and bring the whole meal to life. Sauces and marinades do not need to be fancy and elaborate. They just need to be tasty. Here are a couple of marinades that are full of flavor and and are super easy to make.
The first marinade is a bold and spicy bourbon-molasses sauce for steaks and pork. I used it over some T-Bone steaks and it was fantastic. Because the sauce was very bold, I wanted some milder side dishes to go along with the steak, to focus on the flavors of the sauce. I served it with mashed sweet potatoes made with maple syrup and green beans. I had cut up some mushrooms, peppers and onions to serve on top of the steak, but my husband did not see those so he didn’t cook them. By the time I got home from work, he was hungry and ready to eat. The mushrooms and peppers were save and used for another meal. Because I work nights, for simple meals, I get everything prepared ahead of time and my husband cooks them so they are ready to eat as soon as I get home. He is only trusted with simple dishes though, and even then they don’t always come out right. He tries, bless his little heart. 🙂
Bourbon Molasses Steak Sauce
1 TBSP dried minced onion
1/2 cup ketchup
2 oz Bourbon
1/4 cup molasses
3 TBSP apple cider vinegar
2 TBSP Worcestershire sauce
2 TBSP brown sugar
2 tsp dried mustard powder
1 tsp salt
1 TBSP garlic or roasted garlic
cayenne pepper to taste
Mix everything together in a saucepan and bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer the sauce for about 10 minutes, until it thickens. Turn off the heat and let it cool for a bit. Then cover your favorite cut of steak or pork and let it marinate for at least 1 hour before cooking the meat. I let it set for about 4 hours. The acidity in the ingredients is also acting as a meat tenderizer too, so the longer it marinates, the more tender the meat will be.
My second sauce is just as easy to make, and just as delicious. It is a yogurt lemon-herb sauce, and is a perfect sauce for chicken and seafood. This is a very Mediterranean and specifically Greek, way of preparing chicken and seafood.
Lemon-Herb Yogurt Sauce
I cup plain yogurt
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 TBSP garlic
red pepper flakes to taste
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp each fresh herbs of your choice – I used basil, thyme and oregano
Mix everything together and marinated your chicken for at least 1 hour before cooking.
To complete the Mediterranean theme, I served it with garlic roasted potatoes and rataouille, along with my garlic, herb & tomato focaccia and a dry white wine. Delicious! Garlic, Herb & Tomato Focaccia
Cooking does not have to difficult or complicated. Things just have to look good and taste good. Often times, simple is best.
I will be out of the kitchen for a few more days. I am leaving to go to a coaches’ conference later on today. But have no fear, I will be back in the kitchen and back in business very soon.