An F in Gravy

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If I’d have had to pass Gravy 101 in order to marry my Southern boy, I would certainly have been left at the alter.

I just can’t seem to master gravy.  And Beau really, really likes gravy.  On biscuits.  On rice.  In life.  He was born in Selma, Alabama for goodness sakes!

I like gravy too… or at least I think I do.  It’s been so long since I’ve had good gravy, I really can’t say for sure.  God bless my husband, who always pretends my cooking is the greatest thing he’s ever had and who makes few gravy-related demands.

But gravy is a must at Thanksgiving, right?  And gravy-making is a skill I really ought to develop, don’t you think?

Every year when the holidays roll around, I study the various gravy-making methods employed on the Food Network by all my favorite chefs.  Come Thanksgiving Day, I’m so sure I’ve got it down that I talk my mom into letting me make the gravy.  Alas, inevitably I am unable to transfer my book learning to practical application.  I have made roux from turkey drippings AND from butter, but I find the flour in the roux to be consistently disappointing.  I have used chicken broth AND I’ve used turkey broth, but I always miss the deep, complex flavor I am hoping for.  I have had little success with seasoning.  I’ve said to myself, To heck with the roux.  It’s not like we’re in New Orleans!  I’ll just thicken it with cornstarch.  (I’m pretty sure full-blood Southerners turn their noses up at cornstarch, and I have to say the results weren’t that great anyhow, so scratch that idea.)

Did you know that the gravy can make or break the Thanksgiving meal?  It’s true.  I heard Pioneer Woman say it.

I have failed Gravy 101 so many times, I think I’m just gonna go ahead and call a spade a spade:

I CAN’T MAKE GRAVY FROM SCRATCH.  I give up.

But I’ve done a little research, and I think I COULD make gravy from this top-of-the-gourmet-line Williams-Sonoma turkey gravy base.  It’s only $25 for a jar that makes four cups of gravy.  And I bet it’s delicious gravy.

I think I’ll put it on my Christmas list.

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