Friday, July 15, 2011

Foodie Friday: "Dipney" or Barbeque Mopping Sauce

This Foodie Friday is all about the Barbeque. If you're looking for a good mopping sauce, one from 1913 may inspire you to create your own. What is a mopping sauce? It is a sauce that is brushed or 'mopped' on the meat as it barbeques to both season it and keep it moist. Martha McCulloch-Williams in her book Dishes & Beverages of the South, published in 1913, gives a spicy and rich version that her dad made for barbequing meat such as beef, pork, and lamb. Where did the name 'barbeque' come from? According to her,
The viand is said to get its name from the French phrase a barbe d' ecu, from tail to head, signifying that the carcass was cooked whole.
Her recipe for Dipney, or Barbeque Mopping Sauce:
Two pounds sweet lard, melted in a brass kettle, with one pound beaten, not ground, black pepper, a pint of small fiery red peppers, [nubbed] and stewed soft in water to barely cover, a spoonful of herbs in powder...and a quart and pint of the strongest apple vinegar, with a little salt. These were simmered together for half an hour, as the barbecue was getting done. Then a fresh, clean mop was dabbed lightly into the mixture, and as lightly smeared over the upper sides of the carcasses. Not a drop was permitted to fall on the coals - it would have sent up smoke, and films of light ash. Then, tables being set, the meat was laid, hissing hot, within clean, tight wooden trays, deeply gashed upon the side that had been next the fire, and deluged with the sauce, which the mop-man smeared fully over it.
If you are thinking it was a very hot sauce, you'd be right. In her next paragraph she said
"Hot! After eating it one wanted to lie down at the spring-side and let the water of it flow down the mouth. But of a flavor, a savor, a tastiness, nothing else approaches.
Modern Mopping Sauces

Mopping sauces now will contain any number of ingredients, depending on the BBQ'ers desire. Typical ingredients will include:
  • Acid (vinegar and/or lemon juice)
  • Pepper (black and/or cayenne)
  • Herbs and spices (dried mustard, dried herbs, cumin, chili powder)
  • Liquid (water, coffee, tomato juice, etc)
  • Worcestershire sauce
  • Hot sauce
  • Liquid smoke
  • Fat (vegetable or olive oil, melted butter or margarine, lard)

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