Generally speaking, as a vegetarian, I don’t find myself craving or missing meat. I genuinely like vegetables in their plethora of textures, colors and flavors and I don’t seem to run out of ways to prepare them. Occasionally, I DO, however, get a strong hankering for a flavor that has been associated with meat. Barbecue sauce is one that often raises my pulse. It’s sweet, smoky, delicious, and almost always smothered on something big and meaty. What’s a veggie girl to do?
The idea came to me swiftly after strange duo of circumstances practically dropped it in my lap. I was craving me some BBQ and Melissa graced me with some of her summer squash abundance. SO many tubular yellow vegetables! Not to mention the humongous zucchinis already hogging up the space in my mini-fridge. Alrighty then, BBQ squash and zukes it is!
I started out by shredding up the summer squash and one large zucchini in the food processor. You could also choose to grate them by hand or simply chop them up very small. I ended up with roughly 4 cups. Using all zucchini, all squash, or any combination of the two would probably work equally well.
In a large mixing bowl I combined:
2 tablespoons of Attar’s Monadnock Maple BBQ Spice
1/3 cup tomato ketchup
1/4 cup blackstrap molasses
I then mixed in the 4 cups of shredded squash until it was all coated in the sauce. This would be a fun place to use your hands but a little elbow grease will do you just fine.
In a large ceramic non-stick skillet on medium heat I got a generous amount of coconut oil going, maybe 3 tablespoons. You could also use olive oil or any other kind of oil you prefer.
On medium to high heat I cooked the mixture, uncovered, for about fifteen minutes. You will need to stir and scrape on occasion to prevent the sugars from scorching. What you are trying to do here is cook off the excess liquid.
At the end I cranked the heat up to high for just a minute or two and allowed it to caramelize just a bit, stirring often.
When it is ready it will have reduced dramatically in size and filled your kitchen with a mouthwatering barbecue aroma.
I would have put it on a soft bun of some sort if I had any on hand but it was super delicious on this seedy bread with pickles. You could also add onions, coleslaw or any other toppings you like.
I toasted my sandwich quickly in a pan before digging in.
I think it’s fair to brag a bit considering how impromptu the whole adventure was. This sandwich really rocked my world. It’s a lick-your-fingers-AND-your-plate kind of scrumptious.