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Bourbon sauce will send you out to the grill, no matter the weather

Thursday, June 05, 2003

It is June, right? Shouldn't we be having warmer weather? At least warm enough to grill a few steaks without wearing a sweatshirt? But cool weather or not, we were anxious to test today's first recipe, Bourbon Basting Blast.


The recipe for Bourbon Basting Blast was sent in by Ed Pilzak of Sharpsburg, Ga., in answer to a request from Marsha Draper of Monroeville. Marsha requested the recipe for a sauce called Bourbon Blast. Although Marsha's requested recipe contains orange juice and maple syrup, today's recipe does not -- this one calls for cider vinegar and molasses. But there's nothing wrong with winging it, so we substituted orange juice for the vinegar and maple syrup for the molasses. Both ingredients (more so the O.J.) added a slightly different flavor. But when we make it again, we'll stick with the original recipe -- we liked it better. We served our grilled steaks with fresh green beans and mushrooms sauteed in butter and a tossed salad. Our dessert for this fine dinner was a Rum Cake.

Marlene Smith of the North Side requested a recipe for Bacardi Rum Cake that's made in the microwave. Kitchen Mailbox did not receive a microwave recipe, but Mary Cambest of Baldwin Borough sent her recipe for Barcardi Rum Cake, made in a conventional oven. We're happy she did. Mary's cake was very moist and did not have an overwhelming rum flavor. Bacardi Rum Cake made a perfect ending to a fabulous meal.

Bourbon Basting Blast

  • 1 cup light olive oil

  • 1 cup bourbon
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 6 tablespoons Worcestershire
  • sauce
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ground
  • black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ground ginger
  • 1 tablespoon cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon molasses
  • Salt to taste

In a glass or plastic bowl, blend all ingredients thoroughly. Brush both sides of beef with basting sauce 15 minutes before placing on the grill. Grill over hot fire while basting continuously until the meat is done. Serve immediately.

Makes about 2 cups.

Bacardi Rum Cake


  • 1 cup chopped pecans or walnuts

  • 1 yellow cake mix with pudding, see note
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 cup cold water
  • 1/3 cup oil
  • 1/2 cup dark rum or spiced rum

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Grease and flour 10-inch tube or 12-cup Bundt pan. Sprinkle nuts over bottom of pan. Mix all of the cake ingredients together and pour over nuts. Bake for 1 hour or until tester comes out clean. Cool. Invert.


    • 1/4 pound butter (1 stick)
    • 1/4 cup pineapple juice or orange juice or water
    • 1 cup granulated sugar
    • 1/2 cup rum

    Melt butter in saucepan. Stir in juice and sugar. Boil 5 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from heat; stir in rum.

    Prick top of cake with a wooden skewer or fork. Spoon and brush glaze evenly over top and sides of cake. Allow cake to absorb glaze. Repeat until all glaze is used.

    Decorate cake with frosting or whipped cream. (We decorated with chocolate whipped cream.)

    Note: If using a cake mix without pudding in it, add a 3 3/4-ounce box of vanilla instant pudding and pie filling, 4 eggs and 1/2 cup oil.


    Mildred Rickel of Bridgeville would like a recipe for apple pie made with Ritz crackers (mock apple pie).

    Betty Athens of Churchill would like a recipe for Mulligatawny soup.

    If you want to answer a recipe request from a reader or are looking for a recipe, write to Kitchen Mailbox, c/o Arlene Burnett, 34 Blvd. of the Allies, Pittsburgh, PA 15222; or e-mail toaburnett@post-gazette.com . Include a name, neighborhood and a daytime phone number on all correspondence.

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