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Old 01-28-2007, 08:48 PM   #1
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Default How bout some stout gravy... anyone?

Anyone got a good stout gravy for potatoes, beef, anything? My brother and I attempted a guinness gravy with no luck.

Chris

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Old 01-29-2007, 10:30 AM   #2
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That would depend if you can make gravy. If you can't you need to get that right first.

Just replace a little of the water/stock with the beer.

Simple if you can make gravy, tough if you can't.


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Old 01-29-2007, 10:39 AM   #3
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Yeah, gravy is tough to get right unless you know the secrets...

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Old 01-29-2007, 12:56 PM   #4
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Hmm, well to begin with you need the true flavor of the gravy to come from some kind of meat so to seperate the 'gravy' from the dish is kind of hard. What I mean by that is you need all the browned/carmelized flavors that accumulate on the pan to be released. This will form the base of the flavor, and the method of releasing them is referred to as deglazing.

So you take your roasting pan that beef, pork, chicken etc has been roasting in (or your skillet from the stovetop), remove the meat and then hit it with the beer to deglaze. The pan should be fairly hot, but not smoking as you don't want to burn anything. I would suggest by beginning with a small amount (4 oz or so) of beer to start. One of the major things about cooking with beer is the hop bitterness is magnified when you reduce it. So deglaze with your 4 oz of beer and then add some stock (try about 2 cups). I would go with brown (beef) stock since you are shooting for a stout gravy. When this comes up to a simmer, taste it and if it needs more beer then add some.

If the flavor seems good and you want a thick-er gravy you can do several things in this case. One is to thicken using a Roux. This will give you a more rich flavor. Second you can use a starch slurry. Cornstarch is the easiest. Basically about 1 Tbs in some cold (must use cold) water, swirl it and then wisk it into the hot (must be hot) pan liquid. Same procedure for Roux. Start a little at a time, letting each addition get cooked to create the thickness effect.

The last method is that you can just reduce the gravy (evaporate it on med-high heat) until it becomes thicker, although if there is little body to begin with you really don't get much in the end unless you are doing a cream reduction. Be careful though if you do a reduction as the hop bitterness can really bite through.

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Old 01-29-2007, 01:11 PM   #5
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That's what I said.

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Old 01-29-2007, 08:15 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zoebisch01
Hmm, well to begin with you need the true flavor of the gravy to come from some kind of meat so to seperate the 'gravy' from the dish is kind of hard. What I mean by that is you need all the browned/carmelized flavors that accumulate on the pan to be released. This will form the base of the flavor, and the method of releasing them is referred to as deglazing.

So you take your roasting pan that beef, pork, chicken etc has been roasting in (or your skillet from the stovetop), remove the meat and then hit it with the beer to deglaze. The pan should be fairly hot, but not smoking as you don't want to burn anything. I would suggest by beginning with a small amount (4 oz or so) of beer to start. One of the major things about cooking with beer is the hop bitterness is magnified when you reduce it. So deglaze with your 4 oz of beer and then add some stock (try about 2 cups). I would go with brown (beef) stock since you are shooting for a stout gravy. When this comes up to a simmer, taste it and if it needs more beer then add some.

If the flavor seems good and you want a thick-er gravy you can do several things in this case. One is to thicken using a Roux. This will give you a more rich flavor. Second you can use a starch slurry. Cornstarch is the easiest. Basically about 1 Tbs in some cold (must use cold) water, swirl it and then wisk it into the hot (must be hot) pan liquid. Same procedure for Roux. Start a little at a time, letting each addition get cooked to create the thickness effect.

The last method is that you can just reduce the gravy (evaporate it on med-high heat) until it becomes thicker, although if there is little body to begin with you really don't get much in the end unless you are doing a cream reduction. Be careful though if you do a reduction as the hop bitterness can really bite through.
Holy cow, what an awesome post. I saved this one on my computer to have it forever. I've made a gravy for thanksgiving with the leftover turkey juice and squishy things in the pan, was not to hard, just added some flour, salt, pepper and a little rosemary and simmered to appropriate thickness. I've looked all ove rthe web for the basics of making gravy, and you definitely hit the nail on the head. Thanks a ton! GOtta experiment now.
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Old 01-30-2007, 11:57 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by seefresh
Holy cow, what an awesome post. I saved this one on my computer to have it forever. I've made a gravy for thanksgiving with the leftover turkey juice and squishy things in the pan, was not to hard, just added some flour, salt, pepper and a little rosemary and simmered to appropriate thickness. I've looked all ove rthe web for the basics of making gravy, and you definitely hit the nail on the head. Thanks a ton! GOtta experiment now.

Thanks! Basically what you did with the Turkey is on the right track. If you have too much liquid (there can be several reasons for this) you'll never get that brown goodness that is essential to getting the best flavor. If you want to try something really simple to get a better feel for this concept and aren't afraid of some calories (It's ok to eat like this on occasion imo ) here is a true winner (this is coming out of my head but it should be correct):

Chicken with Rice

2 Boneless skinless Chicken Breast halves
2 - 3 Finely Minced Shallots
4 oz. Lager (something low in bitterness) (never tried this but it'll be great)
1 pint. Heavy Cream (preferrably not whipping cream)
1 to 2 tsp. Clarified Butter or Olive Oil
--serve over----> Steamed Medium Grain rice

On a Medium high flame, place a heavy skillet. Once the pan is hot add enough Olive Oil to form a thin coat in the pan. Place the breasts shiny side down into the pan, while moving the pan back-and-forth with your free hand to prevent the breasts from sticking. Season the tops with salt and pepper. Now you'll want to leave them---Do not turn yet---. Lift the corner of one up and peek, when the whole side of the breast is a deep brown (there should be some brown forming in the pan as well) turn it and do the same on the other side. Cook until they are just done. This should be on the order of 2-3 minutes per side depending on the thickness of the breast. You can test the doneness by pressing on the thickest part of the breast with your finger. It will fell soft inside if it is still raw, if it is resilient it is done (If you've never used this method of testing for doneness this takes a little practice, but is very easy to get the feel for if you try it). The trick here is to have your flame high enough so that you get good browning before overcooking the chicken. Remember, only turn once.

As soon as the breast halves are done, remove them from the pan, toss in your shallots and stir briefly, deglaze with beer and add your cream. It will become bubbly and frothy, keep the heat fairly high and watch for boil overs. As the cream reduces it will pass through the phase where it kind of clings to a spoon. Adjust your salt at this time. It is done when it begins to look quite thick (this will happen practically all at once so be ready!). If you let it go too long it will be ruined. As soon as it is done you can place the breast on top of a small mound of rice and spoon out the cream sauce. Serve it with a lager and a side of maybe steamed greens, Broccoli, Asparagus, etc. .

An excellent variation of this is to rehydrate dried mushrooms in the heavy cream prior to adding it into the pan. My absolute favorite is to use dried Yellow Morels. Although anything from the Bolete family works fairly well too.
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Old 01-30-2007, 08:47 PM   #8
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Sounds delicious. I make a pretty nice alfredo sauce with heavy cream, never new what else to do with it. I'll be trying this recipe this weekend. FYI, I never let SWMBO cook, if I do I always wind up coming in the kitchen and pissing her off by making suggestions.

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Old 02-06-2007, 06:49 PM   #9
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I showed this post to my brother and him and I had a little emailing back and forth. FIgured I post it here for everyone's opinion, enjoyment... amusement?

"Kevin" wrote:

Nice use of the language...lol...but the key is to deglaze properly (just break down the hard fried black chunks in the bottom of the pan with your desired liquid [wine, beer, water, or stock/broth for a sauce, or, milk or cream, usually, for a gravy]) and reduce to the desired consistancy. Times will vary according to a number of variables...amount of desired gravy/sauce, size of pan, amount of meat and seasoning thereupon, etc. Bottom line though is that if you keep an eye on it and stay concious of those 2 things, consitancy and complete break down of hard pieces on the bottom (deglazing), then it will be fine. It's not a science, and there is plenty of room for YOU to control the flavors (by adding lemon (or other fruit juice), butter, herbs, etc.)-much like in whole grain brewing.


"Chris AP.COM" <chris@anotherprofile.com> wrote:
I concur, but he has a good point about making sure you fry/caramelize the chunky stuff just right for the just right amount of time. I'm sure doing that adds a very in depth, full flavor to any style gravy you produce with it.



----- Original Message -----
From: Kevin
To: Chris AP.COM
Sent: Tuesday, February 06, 2007 7:10 PM
Subject: Re: stout gravy



These guys make it sound waaaay harder than it is to make gravy. You just take the liquid and deglaze the pan and let it reduce. That simple. I just didnt know how to make the kind they have at Flanagan's Pub. It's not gravy so much as...sauce I guess. Anywho, the guy with the extinsive Gravy recipe though did hit it on the head technically but I find that experimenting with things such as sauses and gravy works better than knowing exactly how many cups and ounces of stuff to put in it.


"Chris AP.COM" <chris@anotherprofile.com> wrote:
I posted a message about making stout gravy and got a couple real good responses. Check it out:

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/showthread.php?t=20767




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Old 02-06-2007, 06:57 PM   #10
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A little more about starch slurries...

1. The traditional roux uses 1 tblspn butter and one 1 tblspn flour to thicken about 1 cup of liquid. (Some people like gravy thicker than what that will produce. YMMV.)

2. Starch slurries are popular because they eliminate the fat in the roux. But be careful here: a sauce or gravy needs a little fat to bind the solids and have a nice, smooth texture. If you use a starch slurry, make sure your liquid has some fat in it.

3. Cornstarch is nice because the starchy taste cooks away almost instantaneously. It makes a glossier sauce than flour. But it won't reheat very nicely. Flour makes a more opaque sauce, needs to be simmered 5 minutes or more to lose its raw, starchy taste, and will reheat just fine.

Arrowroot thickens like conrstarch but yields a more transparent sauce (not really an issue if we're using stout, of course.)


4. A purely reduction sauce is "thickened" and richened by slowly incorporating some butter. As little as a tablespoon will work: more will yield a smoother and richer sauce (and way more fat and calories). Take the pan of the heat, add butter 1 tblspn at a time and swirl the pan or whick gently to incorporate the butter without melting. (i.e. without the liquids and butter solids seperating)

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