Tailgate: Pork and Poultry Edition

As College Football heads into week three and the weather begins to cool, now is a perfect time to take a look at some recipe ides for your upcoming tailgates. The Crimson Tide tackles the Arkansas Razorbacks this week, while Auburn looks for redemption against the Warhawks of Louisiana-Monroe — hence the “Pork & Poultry” theme. 

Let’s start with a little something to drink. We found a unique twist on a tailgate classic over at Southern Living, and we couldn’t help but share it.

Barbecue Bloody Mary

Lime wedge
1/4 teaspoon Barbecue Rub
1/2 cup vegetable juice
1 tablespoon lime juice
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
3 tablespoons vodka
1/4 teaspoon Barbecue Rub
Ice Garnish: fried pork rinds

Rub rim of an 8-oz. glass with a lime wedge; dip rim of glass in 1/4 tsp. Barbecue Rub to coat. Combine vegetable juice, lime juice, Worcestershire sauce, vodka, and 1/4 tsp. Barbecue Rub in a cocktail shaker; fill with ice. Cover with lid; shake vigorously until chilled. Strain into prepared glass filled with ice. Garnish, if desired.

If a Bloody Mary isn’t your cup of “tea,” we suggest a Brewmosa, also courtesy of Southern Living


1/2 cup orange juice, chilled
1 tablespoon orange liqueur
2 dashes Angostura bitters
1 (7-oz.) bottle lager beer, chilled
Garnish: orange rind strip

Next up, we move to some finger foods: Wings. This recipe comes from Stephanie Parker, whose “Plain Chicken” blog is featured in The Birmingham News‘ Food section each week. 

Brown Sugar BBQ Wings

1 cup ketchup
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 1/2 Tbsp yellow mustard
1 Tbsp cider vinegar
1/2 tsp black pepper
3 lb chicken drumettes

Preheat oven to 450°.  Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil and set aside.

In a bowl, whisk together ketchup, brown sugar, Worcestershire, mustard, vinegar and pepper.  Toss chicken drumettes in half of the BBQ sauce.  Set aside remaining half of the bbq sauce for tossing cooked chicken. 

Place chicken on foil lined pan and bake for 35 minutes, turning halfway though the cooking time.  Toss baked drumettes in remaining BBQ sauce and serve with ranch or bleu cheese, if desired.

This next recipe is a classic in the Memphis area: BBQ Nachos. This Southern delicacy is spicy, so be sure to have a refreshing beverage by your side to wash down the smoky goodness.

Memphis Barbecue Pork Nachos

1 pound smoked pork shoulder, barbecued pork or smoked chicken, chopped
1 (16-ounce) jar spicy nacho cheese sauce
1 pound round tortilla chips
1 (18-ounce) bottle Memphis-style barbeque sauce, see Cook’s Note*
Dry barbecue spice rub or chili powder, as needed
1 small (6 to 8-ounce) can sliced jalapenos, drained

In separate saucepans over low heat, warm the pork and spicy nacho cheese sauce. Divide the chips among 4 shallow bowls. Top the chips with barbecue pork. Layer some cheese sauce over the pork. Top the cheese sauce with barbecue sauce. Sprinkle each bowl with dry rub barbecue seasoning and jalapenos to taste.

*Cook’s Note: “Memphis style” barbecue sauce varies widely, but generally is red and sweet/smoky with a little edge of vinegar and red pepper heat.

Speaking of BBQ, Garden & Gun featured Martha Fosse‘s killer recipe for ribs — from her cookbook, “Screen Porches and Sweet Tea” — on their blog recently. It’s definitely worth a try if you want to make a day of it.  

Mustard-Rubbed Ribs
(serves 4)

Mopping Sauce
1½ cups cider vinegar
2 tbsp. ketchup
2 tbsp. prepared yellow mustard
1 tbsp. light brown sugar
1 tsp. red pepper flakes

Dry Rub
2 tbsp. kosher salt
2 tbsp. chili powder
2 tbsp. hot or smoked paprika
1 tbsp. freshly ground black pepper
1 tbsp. dry mustard
1 tbsp. light brown sugar
1 tbsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. onion powder
1 tsp. ground allspice
5 lbs. beef short ribs, or 1 slab spareribs, rinsed, cleaned, and patted dry

To make the sauce combine the vinegar, ketchup, mustard, brown sugar, and red pepper flakes in a lidded jar. Shake vigorously and refrigerate overnight.

To make the dry rub mix the salt, chili powder, paprika, pepper, dry mustard, brown sugar, cumin, garlic powder, onion powder, and allspice in a small bowl.

Rub the spice blend firmly into the surface of the ribs. Wrap the ribs in plastic and refrigerate overnight.

Place coals on one side of a grill and set a drip pan on the other side. Set the rack 6 to 8 inches above the coals, and light the coals.

When ready to grill, you should be able to hold your palm over the coals for about 2 seconds, and there should be a light ash coating on the glowing coals.

Place the ribs on the grill opposite from the coals, and cover. Cook for 20 minutes, keeping the temperature at 200° to 225°F. Brush with the sauce, cover, and continue to cook, brushing with the sauce every 30 minutes, and covering between moppings, for 3 hours or until the bones move slightly when twisted.

Slice between the ribs and serve with any remaining sauce.

From the book SCREEN DOORS AND SWEET TEA: Recipes and Tales from a Southern Cook © 2008 by Martha Hall Foose. Adapted courtesy of Clarkson Potter.

This last tailgate recipe idea comes complete with a video. And it involves both pork and poultry!

Bon appétit!