Veggie or Bloodmouth: Granny’s Great Gravy Two Ways

Gravy is one of those foodstuffs that you either loooooove or hate. Some people (read: me) like it on everything, and not just for Thanksgiving. I’ve been known to eat it like soup. Sensible!

This first recipe hit me in all the right places the 14 years I spent as a vegetarian. It has great umami flavor that goes well with everything from your basic potato to a grainmeat dinner. It’s vegan, too. The second is my go-to tactic for my bloodmouth days; now that I’m eating meat again, I want to pay the proper respects by using every part.

This is not vegan.

Amazing One-Skillet Mushroom Gravy

What you need:

olive oil
flour of your choice (gluten-free works, too)
a quart of veggie broth
soy sauce
fresh-ground pepper
half a sliced up onion
as many mushrooms of whatever kind you like, sliced

First, turn your stovetop up to medium and heat up your skillet (cast iron, if you have it) with 3 or 4 tablespoons olive oil (just give it a good drizzle). Place your sliced onions in the oil. Once they start to look a little clear, add the mushrooms and give it all a good shake. When the mushrooms start to look a little browned, turn down the heat and slide everything over to one side of the skillet.

Next, drop in another good drizzle of olive oil and add about two or three tablespoons of flour. Whisk the flour/olive oil mixture around until the flour starts to brown. This here is yer roux.

Now add the veggie broth, a few splashes of soy sauce, and a few cranks of pepper. Whisk everything together with the roux, mushrooms, and onions and turn the heat up a little to get everything boiling. As it starts to reduce, periodically whisk things together to make sure you combine any lumps of roux.

Cook until the gravy is the consistency you like; add more broth (or water if you ran out) and whisk to thin. Add soy sauce and pepper to taste and serve however you like it (or pretend it’s mushroom soup).

Now, for the bloodmouths among us…

Straight Up Meat Gravy

What you need:

Pan drippings from meat you just cooked (any kind will do; if you have fowl giblets, you can use those, too — just cook them in a bit of butter or olive oil)
flour
salt
pepper
a couple cups of water or stock

Take the pan you cooked the meat in and drain off all but a couple tablespoons of the drippings and reserve. Strain these reserved drippings in a separate container and skim off some of the fat if you want.

Now, in a hot pan, whisk in a couple tablespoons of flour (again, you’re making a roux). Cook, whisking constantly, until brown. Add back the reserved drippings and whisk until smooth. Then, add a couple of cups of water (or stock or milk or cream), and whisk to blend. Cook to desired thickness, adding some more liquid if needed. Season with salt and pepper.

Once you get gravy down, it’s not really a production. And there’s no reason to reserve its goodness for ye olde holidaye tyme. Now start smotherin’!

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jennyroseryan

Jenny Rose Ryan is a DIY junkie and a self-professed grandma. (In the sense that she likes to say things like, "Back in my day..." and enjoys doilies, blue hair and making things from scratch.) A frequent contributor to BUST Magazine, Jenny Rose also contributed heavily to the BUST DIY Guide to Life (while 9 months pregnant -- the ultimate do-it-yourself experience), and is an avid runner and marathon-fiend. When not carin' for the grumpy babe, writing or running, you can find her listening to new metal (as opposed to nu metal) and being so horrified by American politics that she bakes instead.

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