Some of our most beloved Southern Sauces, like Remolaude, Seafood Cream or Bernaise Sauces are as smooth as satin brocade, others are as cool and puckery as seersucker on a summer day- a classic blendiing of Lemon and Butter or an Herb Seasoned Butter Sauce; then there are others which are Hot and Spicy- our classic Cocktail Sauce is made with chili sauce, a big squeeze of lemon and as much horseradish as you dare -gives Fresh Shucked Oysters or Cold Boiled Shrimp just the right kick! And then there is one Classic Southern Sauce which stands out from the rest, but who hides out in the most delicate of Southern Junior League Cookbooks -She is as mean as the devil– deceptively sweet and fruity with a murderous combination of horseradish and hot mustard that honestly hits every tastebud in it’s wake… The Classic Southern Sauce is so scandalous that some sweet Southern ladies refuse to even name it-or claim it, they disguise her by calling it ‘Mustard Sauce for Ham’ or ‘Miss Lida Jane’s Wild Boar Sauce’ but I’m here to name names darlin’- and while I’ll give you the real basic recipe just know that every Southern cook worth her salt will either have a change of heart- decide to tweak it and not even have the decency to tell you about it- we’re just full of devilment like that! This Classic Southern Sauce actually isn’t easy to find by her real name in modern cookbooks! If you haven’t guessed by now…this Killer Sauce is named Jezebel!
Classic Jezebel Sauce
- One 18 oz. jar of Pineapple Preserves
- One 18 oz. jar of Apple Jelly
- One small can of dry mustard
- One small jar of horseradish
- One tablespoon of cracked pepper – or less
Combine all ingredients, blend well. Put in pint jars and refrigerate. Keeps indefinitely.
This is the classic recipe with barely any precise measurements. I have to admit, if I can’t find an 18 oz. jar of Pineapple Preserves, I love to add some Apricot Preserves to mine- to make up the difference. I also prefer Horseradish purchased in the Seafood Department or refrigerated section- it always seems to have a little more kick and texture; and I use Coleman’s Mustard in the can- some recipes call for regular mustard however, it’s not nearly as much fun- I mean, watching folks taste the sweetness and then the kick- eyebrows go up and let out a whoosh of a sigh is loads more fun! Most general recipes will say- ‘to taste’ for an ingredient like Cracked Pepper- Jezebel seems to, well, feel guilty by saying ‘One Tablespoon – or less’ . Really, darlin’ you’re just now feeling guilty after all of that horseradish and hot mustard powder? And it just kills me that the recipe advises- ‘Jezebel Sauce keeps indefinitely’ but really, it does! Sort of like the devil, always lurking around. Generally, a recipe for Jezebel Sauce will say-
- ‘Delicious with Ham, Pork or Beef’ –
- Others will add- ‘Good on blackeyed peas’ –
- Some will say- ‘Wonderful on the cocktail buffet over a block of cream cheese’.
And all of that is infinitely true. But Jezebel Sauce is also-
- a wonderful snack when smeared on a Ritz® cracker then topped with a thin apple slice, apple slices dunked straight in it isn’t bad either!
- a teaser of an addition on a party table-slipped on top of a sliver of ham in a small yeasty dinner roll is the perfect two bite appetizer
- and Jezebel Sauce is a real eye opener when added to a thimble sized sausage biscuit for brunch.
It’s never too early to start thinking about Valentine’s Day- why not make up some Jezebel Sauce now and give one of those pint jars tied with a big red bow to your sweetheart? It keeps indefinitely. You will be unforgettable, I promise. I know, my sweetheart just got a jar of his own- he loved it and no doubt he will still be thinking about it tomorrow. Jezebel Sauce is one of those closely held secret Southern Sauces you need to try just once- I dare you- no, I double dog dare you!
Love y’all, Camellia
Photographs are obviously my own!