How to make great gravy!(13 Posts)
I'm not a bad cook generally but I always get stumped by gravy. I can make a really small amount of tasty gravy but my family likes loads so I end up resorting to <<whispers>> granules!!
We went out for Sunday lunch last week and I wondered how they would have made so much, presumably in advance.
So, please give me your tips for great gravy! We like it thick, tasty and plentiful.
DH We normally cook the joint in the morning, put all the juice in a jug in the freezer, once you've got potatoes and veggies going, take out of freezer, scrape any fat that has settled on top off, warm through on the hob, maybe add a few granules to thicken it up, and that's about it.
It is bloody bootiful
If it's chicken, you may not need to freeze it, very very little fat comes out of a chicken.
James Martin's (mum's) recipe is very similar to our family recipe.
I mix together two heaped teaspoons of plain flour and two of Bisto powder (not granules) in a mug with some cold water to make a paste then add in more water until the mug is full.
Drain off the fat from the roasting tray and put it onto the stove top over a warm heat. Add about half a pint of cold water and as it warms up it will start to remove all the meaty bits from the bottom of the roasting tray. Add the gravy mixture and some stock powder - I like Marigold Veg Bouillon, a couple of tsp - and stir continuously eight into the corners to make sure you don't get any lumps.
If I have boiled veg I will add some of the water from that too until I get the consistency I want. I always make gravy whilst the meat is resting and the roast pots are finishing off (they are done in the same tray as the meat but put into another hot dish to finish). The gravy will reduce and can be topped up whilst the meat is resting.
James Martin likes to add Marmite.
or it not many juices.
this is for 1/2 pint of gravy
1/2 pint cold water
teaspoon of bovril, chicken bovril or quarter or other stick cube
3 dessert spoons of sauce flour (in flour section of supermarket)or cornflour will do for now
put all the cold (ie not hot water) ingredients into a jug, put into microwave for 1 min, take out and stir, put back in for another min - repeat until it's boiling and should be thick, then add gravy browning.
Cook the meat in an inch or two of water.
Scrape round the roasting tin every half hour or so to keep the gravy juices brown. Roast an onion in with the joint.
Also cook tarragon and thyme with a chicken, rosemary with lamb, sage and apples with pork. while the roast rests, add water to the roasting tin and cook til bubbling on a hot hob. Thicken with a flour/water mixture and season. If it's too think, dilute with the potato or veg cooking water, not out of the tap. Maybe add a dash of pineapple juice to a pork gravy, or redcurrant to a lamb one.
Add a dollop of sour cream or plain soured yoghurt at the end.
And if it tastes crap, add some granules!
When the meat is cooked, remove excess fat from the roasting pan add a tiny splash of boiling water the to pan and gradually mix a heaped desert spoon of cornflour into the pan.
Mix two Oxo cubes into the mix and gradually three quarters of a pint of boiling water, making sure to mix all of the time, to avoid lumps.
When mixed in, put over the heat and bring to the boil, making sure the stir well the whole time. Once boiling, you can stop stirring and leave over a low heat to thicken.
Those measurements do for three of us, usually with some to spare. If we have guests I often double up the water amount and add a little more cornflour.
If you need to thicken even more, you can mix cornflour with a little cold water and gradually stir into the hot gravy, but be careful, it can go lumpy quickly if you are not careful.
No, I find they go soggy if I do that. But if I'm roasting something really fatty, like goose, I'll strain off the excess fat and start parboiled potatoes off in that.
The only reason I don't use the veggie water is that we have an electric steamer, otherwise use the vegetable water.
If you haven't done a roast, but need/want some gravy - for example with sausages - here's what I do:
finely chop an onion
in a medium sized sauce pan, pour enough vegetable oil to cover the bottom of the pan by about 1mm
fry the onion over a high heat till it goes brown and charred around the edges, turn the heat down and let it cook so that it caramelises a bit as well - this will take a good 10 minutes, season with salt and pepper
add a tablespoon of plain flour and stir into the onions/oil and cook - it will go all lumpy and look awful. Do not despair!
Gradually stir in some water, a bit at a time, and keep stirring until the lumps disappear and you get a thick gravy.
Then, add a dash of soy sauce, some worcestershire sauce and (if you've got any) some cranberry or redcurrant jelly, just a tad to give it a little sweetness.
Simmer for about 5 minutes before serving so that the flour is properly cooked.
You can also, if you want, crumble an Oxo cube into it - but if you're going to do that, cut out the salt and go easy with the soy sauce.
Wow! Loads of different methods and just reaslised I'm not even doing a roast today! I'm going to try out all of the different methods.
Ta very muchly
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