Classic Pan Gravy, Gluten-Free and Demystified

by Jeanne on November 26, 2009

Gravy is one of those things that ties together the Thanksgiving dinner. And it’s so good on just about anything you put on your plate. But, for those of us who are gluten-free, it’s yet another thing we have to figure out how to make for ourselves.

Every year my mom made her own special recipe for gravy–using simple stock she made from the giblets of the turkey. I thought this gravy was the most wonderful tasting food in the world. When I finally found out that her secret ingredient was giblet juice, I was a little confused. It was so good, yet it was made from things that were so gross (this was my little kid self thinking, although I kinda feel the same way today).

I still make gravy from a giblet stock (I just throw the giblets in a small sauce pan, cover with water, and simmer the whole thing while the turkey is roasting). You don’t have to tell your guests what you’ve used–it can be your secret. Or, if this isn’t to your tastes, you can just use store-bought broth. Either way, the gravy is delicious.

After years of trying to tell people how to make gravy–I’ve found the perfect how-to video for making classic gravy on the Fine Cooking website. It is clear, shows you how simple it is to actually make gravy, and the cook narrates the measurements as she goes. Very easy and very fun. I recommend watching this video before making the recipe below if you’ve never made gravy before.

Classic Pan Gravy
-adapted from Fine Cooking

Note: This recipe uses my gluten-free flour mix:
Jeanne’s Gluten-Free All-Purpose Flour Mix (mix together and store in a dark, cool place):
1 1/4 C. brown rice flour
1 1/4 C. white rice flour
1 C. tapioca flour
1 C. sweet rice flour (also known as Mochiko)
2 scant tsp. xanthan gum

(you can also use the gluten-free flour mixture of your choice–just be sure it contains xanthan gum. Or, you can add 1/4 tsp xanthan gum per cup of gluten-free flour. If you use bean flour, it will add a bean taste to the gravy)

After you’ve roasted the turkey and have set it on the serving platter to rest and redistribute the juices (for about 20 minutes), you can make the gravy in the roasting pan set across two burners on your stove.

4 C chicken or vegetable broth, homemade or store-bought (if store-bought, check to be sure it’s gluten free)–or giblet stock*
Pan drippings from 1 roast turkey
6 TBL Jeanne’s Gluten-Free All-Purpose Flour Mix
6 sprigs fresh thyme (1 tsp of dried will do in a pinch)

-heat the stock/broth in a separate pan until just hot; set aside
-pour off the juices of the turkey into a 1 quart measuring cup
-wait a few minutes for the fat to rise up to the top (this will be the oily liquid on the top)
-spoon off 1/4 C of the fat back into the roasting pan
-skim off and discard as much of the remaining fat as you can (you don’t have to be too zealous about this–just get as much as you can off and leave the rest)
-add enough stock/broth to the remaining juices to make 1 quart (4 C); set aside
-with the roasting pan over two burners set to medium heat, sprinkle the flour into the pan
-with a whisk (or wooden spoon), stir and cook for about 2 minutes. This is your roux.
-slowly (and I mean slowly) pour about 1/2 C of the broth/juices mixture into the roux in the pan while whisking vigorously–you want to evenly disperse the liquid and mix it with the roux
-the mixture will start to thicken quickly and will seem a bit “gluey”–this is OK
-as soon as it thickens, pour another 1/2 C into pan and repeat whisking.
-repeat these steps until the gravy looks like sauce instead of glue
-you can now pour in all of the remaining broth/juices mixture, whisk to mix, and bring gravy to a simmer
-add your thyme sprigs (or dried thyme) and simmer for about 5 minutes (to cook it and get rid of the flour taste)
-strain the gravy through a medium mesh sieve (mainly to catch the thyme and any remaining lumps)
-test for salt and pepper
-serve in gravy boat or bowl.

*Note: Giblet stock, a la Four Chickens, is about the easiest thing in the world to make–you just throw the giblets into a sauce pan with about 4 C of water. Cover and simmer on low while the turkey is cooking. Once you need the stock, strain out the giblets and voila–you have stock. Make sure you have about 3 1/2 C at least. If you don’t have this much, supplement with water or chicken broth



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