Perfect Pan Gravy

Making a pan gravy from meat drippings has become one of my favorite things to do once I’ve cooked meat in a skillet.  This is also how we make our Thanksgiving gravy from turkey drippings.  I will be honest – I don’t use the giblets when making our gravy.  The thought grosses my husband out.  So these are directions for making gravy using drippings from your meat, without using the giblets (if you’re cooking up a turkey).  This isn’t a science.  I don’t always measure.

I hope to get pictures of the process when we make it tomorrow, but right now I have none.

To make pan gravy, you will need drippings from your meat (about a cup), the fat you skimmed off the top (or butter or vegetable oil), broth, flour, salt/pepper, aromatics (if you wish).

First, drain your drippings into a cup or bowl.  It’s a good idea to cook your gravy in the same skillet or pan that you cooked your meat in, so you can grab all those brown bits that get stuck to the bottom (that is where the flavor hides) – if you used a roasting pan, it’s ok to span two burners on your stovetop to heat it up.  Skim the fat from your drippings using a spoon (save it!).  If you have the time, let your drippings chill in the fridge for about half an hour – the fat will solidify at the top making skimming the fat a lot easier.

Begin heating your pan or skillet over medium high heat, then an add about 1/4 c of the fat you skimmed off of your drippings.  If you have a ton of fat and drippings, you can double the recipe.  If you don’t have that much, you can make the difference up with butter or vegetable oil.  Once the fat is sizzling, stir in enough flour to make a roux.  It should be bubbly and you should be able to move your whisk through the roux to separate it, and watch it fill back in.  If you have clumps, you added too much flour.  Add more fat until you even things out.  Ideally you will use equal amounts of both fat and flour.  Cook the roux until it turns light brown and is fragrant.  If you don’t cook it long enough your gravy will have an uncooked flour taste.

Once your roux has cooked, add your reserved pan drippings.  The addition of this liquid will cause the browned bits to release from the skillet, then the flour in the mix will thicken the drippings up pretty well.  It’s ok, it won’t be that thick for long.

Add your broth, about a half cup, gradually adding and whisking more, until you have the desired thickness you want.  Cook until heated through.  At this point, add salt, pepper or any thing else you wish to put in here.


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