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How to Make Great Gravy
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How to Make Great Gravy

The following tips for making gravy come to us from the National Turkey Federation. While they were written with America's favorite bird in mind, most of them will work for any kind of gravy.

The art of gravy making can be a challenge to those who only prepare the robust sauce on special holiday occasions. To produce a full flavored gravy, it is critical to cook the flour in about an equal portion of fat until the flour has lost its raw taste. A rather common problem is the temptation to use too much flour, which decreases the flavor. Remember the gravy will continue to thicken after it has been removed from the heat. A good rule is to use between 1 and 2 tablespoons of flour for each cup of liquid and then give the mixture time to thicken.

If a shortage of turkey gravy is a common problem at your house, double the turkey gravy recipe by using melted butter and extra warmed turkey or other poultry stock.

The following chart lists several common gravy problems and ways to eliminate them so the grand feast will be complete.

Gravy Problems Gravy Solutions
Gravy is lumpy With a whisk rotary beater, beat the gravy until smooth. If all other attempts fail, use a food processor, strainer or blender. Reheat, stirring constantly. Serve.
Gravy is too salty If the over salting is slight:

A. Add several raw potato slices and cook until the potato slices are translucent. Remove and discard the potato prior to serving.

B. Add a few pinches of light brown sugar. DON'T ADD TOO MUCH or your gravy will turn sweet.

If the over salting is severe, the gravy must be repaired by increasing the quantity. Prepare another batch of gravy, omitting all salt. Blend the two batches together.
Gravy is too light in color Add 1/2 teaspoon of instant coffee
Gravy is not thick If time permits, allow the gravy to continue to simmer on the stovetop. If time does not allow, mix the following thickening agents as indicated:

A. Cornstarch - Blend 1 teaspoon per cup of liquid in cold water. Stir until dissolved then mix into gravy. Continue to cook and stir to eliminate the cornstarch flavor.

B. Make a thin paste of flour and cold water, stir into gravy and continue to cook to eliminate the raw flour flavor.

C. Arrowroot - Blend 1 tablespoon per cup liquid in cold water. Stir until dissolved, then mix into gravy. Can be served as soon as the gravy thickens due to arrowroot's lack of taste.

NOTE: Mixing starch with cold water before adding it to a hot mixture prevents lumping.

Gravy is too thick Slowly whisk in more broth until the desired thickness is achieved.
Gravy is  greasy/fatty For an immediate fix, the fat can be skimmed off the top or soaked up with a fresh bread slice. If more time allows, chill the gravy, skim off the fat and reheat the gravy until it bubbles.


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