Florida Blues Marinade

Summertime's almost here, y'all! It's time to defrost the grill and get out there! I remember the summers of my youth. Many a time I'd be my dad's assistant on the grill. We had an old weber with regular, un-pre-soaked charcoal that we had to douse in lighter fluid and toss a match from 5 feet away. My dad would tend the grill, and I would get him whatever he needed, but mainly I was the one holding the cup of water who would flick a little bit down onto any grease fires that popped up. Can't let them steaks or chops burn! I remember that being a pretty darn hectic job, flare up after flare up... getting covered in greasy smoke.  But then I got to eat one of my dad's steaks.

My dad was a marinade-making fiend.  He had his own teriyaki marinade (sadly, lost in the mist of time) that he would set them steaks in for a day before grilling!  Another job of mine was to sit there and stab every millimeter of those steaks with a fork to allow for the greatest penetration of that deliciousness!  The steaks would just dissolve in your mouth.

So in honor of all of those dog days at the grill, I came up with a little marinade of my own. The Florida Blues Marinade. I originally conceived of this as a chicken marinade, but someone pointed out to me the possibilities that this has with pork chops or ribs, and now... I go with pork everytime!

Here's what you need:

1 five-ounce bottle of Coffee Blues Stout Beer Vinegar
2 tablespoons of brown sugar
1-1/2 tablespoons orange juice
1/4 teaspoon whole cloves (or about 4 cloves)
1/8 teaspoon cinnamon 

The instructions are pretty simple, but be warned! This should be done long enough before you start marinating your meat that the liquid is cool. You don't want to cook your meat before you really cook it! 

Simply take all the ingredients and put them in a non-reactive pot (i.e. stainless).  Gently heat them over a medium flame just until the brown sugar dissolves.  Then shut off the flame and put the marinade in the fridge to cool. Once it's cool, it's ready for some meat! Marinade that chicken, pork or steak in there for as long as you can stand it.

Once grilling time comes, throw the extra marinade back in a pot and put it on the grill to cook down.  When everything is done you can spoon the reduced marinade on top.

Enjoy, but remember... watch out for those grease fires! 


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