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Kansas City-Style Barbecue Sauce
Thick, spicy, tomatoey, sweet, and pungent, it is a great all-purpose sauce for a variety of meats

Ingredients:
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/2 cup minced onion
1/2 cup finely chopped celery
2 tablespoons minced garlic
3/4 cup cider vinegar
1/2 cup tomato paste
1/2 cup water
2 tablespoons molasses (mild flavor)
3 tablespoons light brown sugar
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
2 teaspoons paprika
1 teaspoon powdered mustard
1 teaspoon celery seed
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon coarse salt

Directions:
1. Heat the vegetable oil in a heavy saucepan over moderate heat. Add the onion, celery, and garlic, and cook for 5 minutes, or until slightly soft.
2. Add all the remaining ingredients, and simmer sauce, uncovered, for 30 minutes, or until it is quite thick. Purée sauce in blender until smooth. (If you prefer an extra-smooth sauce, pass mixture through a fine sieve.)

In most parts of the country, when we think about barbecue sauce -- like the bottled ones we buy in the supermarket -- it is Kansas City-style sauce that comes to mind. Thick, spicy, tomatoey, sweet, and pungent, it is a great all-purpose sauce for a variety of meats. The following version is one of the most complex we've ever tasted. Makes about 2 cups