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Good Gravy

November 23, 2019

 

Gravy is a very simple endeavor, but it intimidates many people.  Here's a formula and tips that will make you a gravy pro.  

 

Basic Gravy Formula

 

  • 1 cup liquid:  broth, pan drippings, or a combination   

  • Flour of choice    *See Notes below 

    • 1 Tbsp. for a thin gravy

    • 1 1/2 Tbsp. for a medium gravy

    • 2 Tbsp. for a thick gravy 

  • 2 Tbsp. fat     *See Notes below

 

1.  Place the fat and flour in a saucepan heated to medium heat.  With a whisk, stir occasionally while the fat melts.  When the fat is melted and mixture starts to bubble, reduce the heat, cooking and whisking for an additional 4-5 minutes.  This cooking time is an important step to ensure your gravy does not have an unpleasant raw flour taste. 

 

2.  Gradually whisk in the broth and/or pan drippings until smooth.  

 

3.  While whisking, heat mixture to a gentle boil and boil until thick.  This shouldn't take long.  Reduce heat to low to keep warm.  If you would like a thinner gravy, add additional broth.

 

4.  Season to taste with salt and pepper and

 

5.  Gravy will thicken up slightly when it's removed from heat.  

 

 

NOTES

 

1.  Multiply the above formula and you can easily make as much gravy as you need.  

 

2.  If your gravy is lacking in flavor, add 1/4-1/2 tsp. apple cider vinegar; per cup of liquid, to perk it up.  It sounds strange, but it really works.  

 

  • FLOUR:  I like to use high extraction Einkorn flour for gravy.  For a gluten free option, I suggest using Sorghum flour.  It has good thickening ability, so I would suggest using 1 1/2 Tbsp. per cup of liquid.  If you use whole grain sorghum flour, it will not be quite as velvety smooth, but frankly, most people will not notice a difference.  Sorghum behaves in a similar way as all-purpose flour does when used as a thickener in gravy and the gravy re-heats well, which can't be said of many gluten free flours, or blends.   

  • FAT:  The fat can be fat from drippings, reserved fat from previously made bone broth, butter, ghee, duck fat, goose fat, chicken fat, or a combination.   

 

 

PAN DRIPPING GRAVY

 

1.  If you're making gravy with meat drippings, follow steps 2-12.

 

2.  First, I suggest deglazing your pan.  This really is the key to giving gravy a deep rich color and flavor.  You can do this by placing the pan over a burner, or two.  Heat to medium heat. Pour enough broth, water, or a combination to cover the bottom of the pan.  Stir and scrape the sides and bottom of the pan until the yummy tidbits etc. are soft and incorporated into the liquid.  

 

3.  Now, you'll need to separate the fat from the drippings and added water/broth.  You can do this by pouring the de-glazed liquid into a heat-safe glass container, such as 4 cup pyrex measuring cup.    

 

4.  Before pouring, place a small, fine mesh colander over the container, to strain out anything that you don't want in your gravy.   

 

5.  Allow the fat to rise to to the top.  This will take just a minute or two.  You'll be able to see a layer of fat on the top.  

  

6.  Gently tilt the container and carefully spoon the fat off the top.  Don't worry about getting all of the fat, just most of it.  If you have a turkey baster, you can gently suck up, or spoon off the fat.  If you want to splurge, you can look into a gravy separator like this, or this.  

 

7.  Measure the fat.  You'll need 2 Tbsp. for every cup of gravy you wish to make.  If you need additional fat for the amount of gravy you're making, add butter, or reserved fat from previously made bone broth to make up the difference. 

 

8.  Measure the drippings and/or broth.  If you don't have enough drippings for the amount of gravy you'd like to make, add broth to make up the difference.  Generally you'll need 1/3 cup gravy per person, but go ahead and make extra while you're at it.  It never hurts to have extra gravy.

 

9.  Place the fat and flour in a saucepan heated to medium heat.  With a whisk, stir occasionally while the fat melts.  When the fat is melted and mixture starts to bubble, reduce the heat, cooking and whisking for an additional 4-5 minutes.  This cooking time is an important step to ensure your gravy does not have an unpleasant raw flour taste. 

 

10.  Gradually whisk in the broth and/or pan drippings until smooth.  

 

11.  While whisking, heat mixture to a gentle boil and boil until thick.  This shouldn't take long.  Reduce heat to low to keep warm.  If you would like a thinner gravy, add additional broth.

 

12.  Season to taste.

 

13.  Gravy will thicken up slightly when it's removed from heat.  

 

 

Make-Ahead Gravy

 

1.  When it comes to turkey time, who wants the stress of making gravy at the last minute after the bird is pulled out of the oven?  There's a lot going on in the kitchen at that time, with people standing around.  Making gravy can add up to a lot of stress!  Not to mention the added mess.  But never fear.  You can make an excellent gravy in advance.   

 

2.  Buy turkey parts, wings, backs etc. when you buy the turkey.  

 

3.  Several days in advance, roast the parts, with a carrot, a celery rib, several garlic cloves and an onion, until they're a deep golden brown.   

 

4.  Then make plenty of broth with the roasted parts and drippings, adding a few herbs to the cooking liquid if desired.  

 

5.  Strain the broth through a fine mesh strainer into containers and refrigerate.

 

6.  The fat will magically come to the top.

 

7.  When you're ready to make gravy, scrape as much fat as needed off the top and store any remaining fat in the fridge or freezer.  

 

8.  Use the above formula and multiply it to make as much gravy as needed for Thanksgiving, or other holidays and events!

 

10.  The gravy re-heats nicely over medium to medium-high heat. Bring to a boil, adding additional broth, if needed and reduce heat to low to keep warm.   

 

   

 

 

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