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Decent gravy please.

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Old Style MoneySaving
163 replies 17.7K views
TicklemouseTicklemouse Forumite
5K posts
edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Old Style MoneySaving
Hiya fellow Ol' Stylers

In my quest to rid my household of as many additives as possible, I have stopped using gravy granules and started making my own gravy. I always did use the meat and veg juices, just bunged in the granules and maybe a splosh of wine and all was hunky-dory.

However, I have made a lamb and a chicken gravy to date using cornflour to thicken and they have not been a great success. Is my mistake in using cornflour instead of ordinary flour?

You recipes and tips gratefully received.



  • Bogof_BabeBogof_Babe Forumite
    10.8K posts
    I wonder if you can still get Bisto powder? My mum always used to mix a couple of teaspoonsful of Bisto with the same of cornflour and a little water, mix well and add to the meat and/or vegetable juices, stirring constantly to thicken.

    Must admit, being a vegetarian household (mainly), we just use the Bisto veggie granules nowadays, but I do remember when I was about 9 and ill in bed with something or other, mum asking me what I fancied to eat, and me saying "gravy" and getting a bowl of just that! The real McCoy. It was gorgeous :D .
    :D I haven't bogged off yet, and I ain't no babe :D

  • JolaaledJolaaled Forumite
    1K posts
    Part of the Furniture 500 Posts Combo Breaker Mortgage-free Glee!
    my mum makes the best gravy on the whole planet!
    First she makes a roux, using fat skimmed off the joint juices after it's been roasted, together with plain flour. The roux is cooked for about 2 mins, then the juices are all added to this, together with water. This is then simmered for about 5 mins. Makes fab gravy!
  • when you roast the meat place it on a trivet of chopped carrots onions celery,
    deglaze the pan with a little water on top of the hob to lift all of the caramelized juices stuck to the bottom of the pan.

    make a roux and add the juices and vegetables and add some stock. cook for a few minutes and strain.
    The vegetables that you have roasted will add the "missing flavour" from the granules.

    If you prefer a darker gravy add some gravy browning, which is just a caramel colour all natural (or it used to be ).

    You can add things such as wine or redcurrant jelly to change the flavours, especialy nice with lamb.
    hope this helps
  • AP22AP22 Forumite
    16 posts
    To thicken any sauce, just mix some plain flour with some cold water. Slowly pour into near boiling sauce and keep stirring! Luvly Jobly!!
  • MATHMATH Forumite
    2.9K posts
    Can you believe in the US there is no such thing as instant gravy, granuals or powder. No instant custard either:eek: I make my own gravy on Sundays using the roux method posted above but use instant in the week (no very often cos we don't eat many trad meat 'n' 2 veg dinners). If you're gonna make your own make a real big batch and freeze/chill for the days you aren't roasting a suitable joint.
    Life's a beach! Take your shoes off and feel the sand between your toes.
  • Bogof_Babe wrote:
    I wonder if you can still get Bisto powder? .
    yes you can :)
  • greenlogogreenlogo Forumite
    231 posts
    When I've made gravy, I've used the Roux method discribed here, but in detail:

    Pour the meat run offs into a gravy separator - so I can use just the meat juice and not lots of fat to make the gravy.

    Make up a pint of stock, or have some warmed stock to hand

    Put the pan with the meat juice on a hot ring on the hob

    sprinkle on a little plain flour (I've used self-raising in a pinch and it was ok) and stir in slowly, continue to do this until a loose paste is formed

    KEEP STIRRING!! and let the flour cook off for a couple of minutes - it will darken a little.

    Stir in a little stock at a time (any lumps can be stirred out, just keep at it and they'll go eventually - the slower you add the stock, the less lumpy it is) until the desired consistency is reached.

    Chicken and turkey gravy benefits from a little lemon juice to bring up the flavour

    Beef gravy benefits from some very chopped up sauteed onions

    Pork gravy benefits from a teeny bit of apple sauce

    :D hth
    Pre O/S: what's a vitamin? Does it begin with the letter e?Now: I'm not eating any of that pre-made rubbish...
  • TicklemouseTicklemouse Forumite
    5K posts
    Thanks for your replies. I think I'll go down the roux path - have to say I have always HATED bisto. I did look for gravy browning in my local Tesco's today but they've stopped doing it. Mind you, I seem to remember it contains things I'm trying to avoid - hydrogenated veg fats or propylene glycol or something.

    I was thinking that I must get myself a decent gravy separator. I used to have one many moons ago but it split, so maybe I'd be better off trying to find a decent glass one. I'll have to look for it in the same shops that do wooden carving boards - can't seem to find one of those either!
  • BeclesBecles Forumite
    13.1K posts
    Part of the Furniture 10,000 Posts Name Dropper Photogenic
    I wouldn't buy a wooden chopping board.

    They are easily marked with grooves from your knives, and wil soak in juices from veg and meat. Once the surface gets rough with knife grooves they are very difficult to clean properly. All sorts of nasty bacteria will start living in the grooves. It's an ideal place for them to breed - nice warm kitchen and food supply from the absorbed juices.

    I used to work in a food microbiology lab, so I'm well aware of what nasties can grow in the kitchen. I'd never have a wooden chopping board in my kitchen. I've got a glass one which cleans easily after use.
    Here I go again on my own....
  • Debt_Free_ChickDebt_Free_Chick Forumite
    13.3K posts
    Bear in mind that you need a certain amount of fat to make a roux - which is just flour mixed with fat and "cooked" a little to remove the raw flavour of the flour.

    Personally, I don't drain any fat off the meat juices to make gravy. I just put the roasting tin on the hotplate and stir in a tblsp on plain flour. Stir constantly. Add stock slowly, stirring continuously. If it helps, use a whisk ... but it's the stirring that removes any lumps. Don't add the stock in one go.
    Warning ..... I'm a peri-menopausal axe-wielding maniac ;)
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