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Old 06-16-2008, 02:25 PM   #1
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Soda sauce?

I wasn't sure of where to put this.. In the sauces area, or in the beverage area, so I went with general cooking.. I hope this is the right place. Sorry if it isn't. =( lol

I saw something on Food Network a while ago (I don't remember how long, but it's been a while) where some guy used root beer in a recipe, and I've thought that was cool since then. And now that I'm cooking a lot, I want to try it out.

I did some looking around on the forums and read that you can make really good barbecue sauces using sodas. And that seems like a good place to start with using soda in recipes.

But, how do I make it a sauce? Soda's sweet enough by itself, so I don't think I'll be adding anymore sugar.. And it doesn't seem that just adding stuff to make it spicy will be enough to thicken it into a sauce... Am I wrong there? Or will I need to add flour or something to thicken it? Or am I wrong there too?

How do I make it into a sauce? lol

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Old 06-16-2008, 03:04 PM   #2
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I think Alton Brown used it in a ham glaze.
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Old 06-16-2008, 03:09 PM   #3
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Generally, you would reduce the soda. As it reduces it gets thicker. The more you reduce it the thicker it gets.
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Old 06-16-2008, 03:10 PM   #4
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I use Coke along with some extra brown sugar and cloves to bake hams. Its really good!!

Depending on what you are cooking you might want to sweeten things a bit.
I know you need to club soda for a good tempura...

I can see doing chicken with a lemon-lime soda... Perhaps fish too.

It's going to be some trial and error but I think its cool thing to try.
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Old 06-16-2008, 03:12 PM   #5
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I think Alton Brown used it in a ham glaze.
That sounds really good! And something other than the usually brown sugar, honey, and pineapple glaze would be cool for a change.
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Old 06-16-2008, 03:24 PM   #6
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I think Alton Brown used it in a ham glaze.
Alton Brown also has a cranberry sauce recipe that uses ginger ale. I've made it a couple of times at thanksgiving and had good results.
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Old 06-16-2008, 03:34 PM   #7
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Alton has a recipe called "country ham" that uses Dr. Pepper.

Enjoy.

-Josh

P.S. -If you search on the same site for "Dr. Pepper" or your favorites there are more recipes to choose from - Emeril has a Chicken Recipe with Dr.Pepper.
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Old 06-16-2008, 04:09 PM   #8
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I did a search for root beer on Food Network: root beer Recipe Search Food Network

There are quite a few root beer floats, but it seems popular to use it as a marinade or glaze for pork. There were a few chicken recipes, too. HTH.
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Old 06-16-2008, 07:14 PM   #9
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Okay, so, I tested this out.

I assume reducing means to just boil it? Well, that's what I did...

I put some cream soda and Pepsi together in a sauce pan, and boiled it while I fixed the food.

It didn't really thicken up, so I added some flower and whisked until it was as smooth as I could get it. I added a pinch of salt and a pinch of black pepper.

In a separate bowl, I spooned out some mayonnaise (around 5 tablespoons? I was using a regular spoon and scooped it out five times. lol). I put some horseradish (around one tablespoon) in, some tobasco sauce (I'd say 2 to 4 teaspoons) About 1 1/2 tablespoons of mustard, and for some extra flavor, I put 2 or so tablespoons of this cheese thing we have in our refrigerator (It was some Mexican 4cheese chip dip or something lol) and mixed that up real well.

I poured the cream soda/Pepsi on top of that, mixed it up, and it was runny again, so I added some more flower and whisked it pretty hard until it was smooth and more or less clumpless. I added another teaspoon or two of tobasco, and whisked it up. It's a little sweet, but has some good flavor. =)
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Old 06-16-2008, 08:53 PM   #10
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Wow, that sounds interesting What did you do with this concoction?
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Old 06-16-2008, 09:07 PM   #11
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Well, for tonight I put it on some vegetables (Carrots, okra, potato, peppers, onion, etc) that I boiled. I got tired of the vegetables (they had some weird taste, and I could hardly taste the sauce) though, so I put the rest of it that I didn't use in the refrigerator. It could be used for a lot (according to my mom lol) though, so whatever I have the urge to try it on. lol
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Old 06-16-2008, 10:01 PM   #12
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Well, for tonight I put it on some vegetables (Carrots, okra, potato, peppers, onion, etc) that I boiled. I got tired of the vegetables (they had some weird taste, and I could hardly taste the sauce) though, so I put the rest of it that I didn't use in the refrigerator. It could be used for a lot (according to my mom lol) though, so whatever I have the urge to try it on. lol

To me it sounds like you were attempting to create two different sauces that got blended together.
I think using sodas as base is OK for some things but I certainly would not attempt to make them into any type of creamed or cheese sauce.

Pepsi with Cream soda would be VERY sweet. I think mixing those with some apple cider vinegar, taragon, basil, garlic, onion boil that down, reducing the volume by at least 50% , let cool then mix with a little olive oil, shake until it emulsifies. You could then put that on greens, vegetables what ever.
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Old 06-16-2008, 11:12 PM   #13
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OK - a little history first: using "sodas" in cooking became popular during the war years when sugar was rationed ... but, ironically, soda wasn't. The "soda" provided the missing rationed sugar. It was reduced and used as a glaze for meats, and as a sweetner for cakes, etc.

"Soda" is a mixture of a sugar syrup with flavorings and carbonated water. To thicken soda - you add it to a sauce pan, bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer and simmer it uncovered until it thickens - usually a reduction of about 1/8th, or less, the original volume (you cook off the water to reduce it back to a syrup). In the "olde" days this would result in a "simple syrup" (sucrose) with flavorings - with the advent of using HFCS (high fructose corn syrup) you get a flavored corn syrup. In either case - you have to simmer it until it reduces to a thick syrup.

And, yes - as it reduces you have to pay it a bit more attention ... stir more frequently, reduce the heat, etc. if you don't want the sugar to burn/scorch.

If your "soda reduction" didn't get thick - you didn't reduce it enough. This takes time (1-2 hours maybe) - you reduce it and then cook what you want to use it on. Using root-beer, coke or dr. pepper, for a ham glaze which is not reduced first works because it is used as a basting medium as the ham cooks - it thickens over time in the oven.

For cakes, etc. where the soda was not reduced before use - the moisture content of the recipe was adjusted to account for the moisture of the soda.

Of course - I can't think of anyone who would try to make a cream soda and pepsi with flour sauce to serve over vegetables.
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Old 06-16-2008, 11:15 PM   #14
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If you are going to thicken your sauce you should use Tapioca flour.. Take instant Tapioca and run it through a spice grinder and add a little at a time it will thicken up pretty quick.. and it will be clear with no lumps. Now you can make all kinds of Soda sauces
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Old 06-16-2008, 11:15 PM   #15
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Cool bit of history, thanks! I was thinking you would still reduce it if using it to baste a ham, but you are saying just use it as is?
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Old 06-16-2008, 11:36 PM   #16
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Cool bit of history, thanks! I was thinking you would still reduce it if using it to baste a ham, but you are saying just use it as is?
Follow the recipe! The root-beer with a ham in a roasting pan will reduce quite nicely ... and if the recipe calls for basting with it ... that will be basting with it as it reduces/thickens. If the recipe calls for reducing first - do that.

Different sodas have different flavors, such as:

Root Beer - sassafras
Dr. Pepper - prune (although it doesn't contain prunes)
Creme Soda - vanilla
Mountain Dew - lemon-lime
etc.
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Old 06-17-2008, 12:21 AM   #17
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That sounds really good! And something other than the usually brown sugar, honey, and pineapple glaze would be cool for a change.
My mom always used Vernor's (really REALLY potent ginger ale). I can hardly find it in Green Bay, but it almost has a bite to it. There are very few fond memories of my childhood, but that "sweet" gravy is one of them.
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Old 06-17-2008, 08:35 AM   #18
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You can take equal parts of Coke and ketchup, mix and heat and reduce some. This makes a great easy BBQ sauce if you don't have any on hand.

What you need to do is go to the bookstore and sit down with a book on sauces and see what types of things are used and how. Your sodas would make good BBQ type sauces and glazes. When it comes to a cheese sauce you're going to find savory ingredients, not really sugary ingredients, are used.

With a bit of reading you will get a feel of what goes together. Read through some basic instructional cookbooks and it will help you in all aspects of cooking.
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Old 06-17-2008, 02:25 PM   #19
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My mom always used Vernor's (really REALLY potent ginger ale). I can hardly find it in Green Bay, but it almost has a bite to it. There are very few fond memories of my childhood, but that "sweet" gravy is one of them.
I know Vernor's, we still have it around here but I am not a ginger ale fan so haven't tried it.
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Old 06-17-2008, 09:10 PM   #20
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I know Vernor's, we still have it around here but I am not a ginger ale fan so haven't tried it.
It is unlike any other ginger ale. Very strong flavors. Wonderful stuff. Now if you want REAL strong(where it will burn your lips) ginger. Find some Jamaican Ginger Beer!!
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