Saturday, May 28, 2011

How NOT to make gravy (and how to)

I've been experimenting lately with sprouted wheat flour (that I make myself.) It seems to work quite well for most applications, and at least at the time of cooking, is more convenient than having to think ahead and soak the flour overnight or longer.

For dinner, I decided to make sausage gravy and biscuits (one of my husband's all-time favorites!) I hope he still loves me. I kind of ruined it today ~ but I did learn a valuable lesson.

Here is 1/2 pound of sausage cooking in the frying pan:

Here I am adding 1/2 cup sprouted flour - stirring it into the meat and drippings:

Adding 1 quart of fresh goat milk, a little at a time, and stirring to combine:

Then I cooked it, stirring, on medium heat, until it came to a boil and thickened. All was looking fine and suddenly, it curdled! Ewww. Well, I wasn't going to throw away all that food, so we ate it anyway. It was sort of OK. Only sort of.

But I did make wonderful biscuits and will tell you how I did that.

Oh, here is my little plate of the nice biscuits with questionable gravy:

Sprouted Wheat Flour Biscuits

2 cups sprouted whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon unrefined sea salt
2 teaspoons Rumford baking power
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
2 Tablespoons kettle-rendered lard
1 cup milk kefir (or buttermilk, if you like)

Combine the first 4 ingredients in a bowl.

Using your fingers, rub the lard into the dry ingredients.

Pour the kefir in all at once and stir only long enough to get it all moist.

Using a bit more sprouted wheat flour, dust your work surface.

Turn out the dough, pat to 3/4 inch thickness and cut with a biscuit cutter. Place each biscuit upside-down on a baking sheet.

Bake at 450 F for 12 minutes. This makes 12 regular sized biscuits. They are tender and nice.

Ok, so how should you make gravy? In the past, I've used unbleached flour (and unsoaked) in my gravies, but I am trying to make everything as healthy nutritionally as I am able. That is why I tried the SW flour this time.

Here is a link to a video showing a wonderful method for making gravy. That, generally, is how I do it now.... so, next time I'll do the following:

Next Time's Gravy

1/2 # pork sausage
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup milk kefir (or buttermilk)
3.5 cups fresh goat milk

The day before, combine the whole wheat flour with the kefir, cover tightly and let it sit on the counter.

When you want to make the gravy the next day, cook the sausage, chopping it all up, in a cast iron skillet.

Mix the soaked flour with the fresh milk (however you like - blender, shake it up in a jar, etc.)

Stirring, add the milk mixture to the pan and on medium heat and stirring constantly, bring to a boil. Simmer, stirring, for 1 minutes.

That's it!

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