Showing posts with label mushroom gravy. Show all posts
Showing posts with label mushroom gravy. Show all posts

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Dress Your Potatoes in Mushroom Gravy

My gram made some dang fine gravy.  See my gram was a country girl, from that part of Virginia that seems to skip right over the Carolinas and become Georgia.  She was not squeamish about the gizzards and such.  We all averted our eyes while gram turned the least appealing part of the turkey into the most rich and savory gravy imaginable.

That gravy was the motif of the meal . . . it went on the potatoes (of course), the turkey, the stuffing, and if a little got on the green beans, well all the better.  We even slathered congealed gravy on our leftover turkey sandwiches.  (Hey, I never claimed to come from classy people.  Don't judge.)

Thanksgiving of 1993 was the last time I ate meat.  I'd decided to become a vegetarian a week or so before, but I wanted my gram's gravy one last time.

I expected to mourn gravy, never find a suitable substitute.

Ah, but then I acquired a wonderful cookbook called "Sundays at the Moosewood."  If you're in the market for a vegetarian cookbook, I highly recommend it.  It takes a sort of culinary trip around the world and has provided our family with some of our most beloved dishes.  In the "Great Britain" chapter, you will find a recipe for shepherd's pie.  We made that recipe our own and it became our go-to Thanksgiving meal (a bottom layer of sauteed peas, carrots and cashews, topped with a blanket of mushroom gravy, and then a thick frosting of mashed potatoes).

The whole thing is delish, but it's the mushroom gravy that makes my heart go pitter pat.  Mr. Wendy always requests I make a double batch of the gravy so we have plenty of leftovers.  And once I took a mason jar of the stuff to my gram's for Thanksgiving, and one of my cousins dubbed it "better than grandma's."  (That did not earn him any points with his elders, but I was proud as a peacock for the rest of the meal.)

In any event, this is the recipe for mushroom gravy from "Sundays at the Moosewood."  If you have a vegan or vegetarian at your gathering (or if you're serving beef instead of bird), this may be a great alternative.  Because no one should have to eat naked mashed potatoes.

Cooking Down the 'Shrooms
Mushroom Gravy

2 Tbs. canola oil
3 Tbs. soy sauce
8 - 12 oz. sliced mushrooms (the recipe calls for 8, but I prefer 12)
a pinch of freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 c. vegetable broth (or the water you used to boil your potatoes)
2 Tbs. cornstarch dissolved in 1/2 c. cold water

Combine the oil, soy sauce, mushrooms, and pepper in a large skillet and cook over medium-high heat until the mushrooms are tender (don't let them cook down too much, because it's nice to have a bit of texture to them).  Add the broth or potato water and bring to a boil.  Slowly stir in the cornstarch mixture, then reduce to a slow boil and continue to cook (stirring often) until the gravy is thick and clear.

Yep, it's that easy.

***  What about you?  Do you make your own gravy or buy it prepared?  Or do you actually prefer your spuds au naturele?  Give me your gravy memories!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Welcome Guest Blogger, Barb Goffman!

We here at Mystery Lovers' Kitchen have been fortunate to host Barb once before. Today she brings us entertainment in the form of fun Thanksgiving stories as well as a fabulous mushroom gravy recipe.

Welcome, Barb!!

Get Through Thanksgiving with a Good Laugh and Some Marvelous Mushroom Gravy

With 11 days remaining until Thanksgiving, you may be a little stressed. The family’s coming! You have to clean the house. Buy all the food. Cook all the food! (Or maybe you’re going to a certain relative’s home where you fear you’ll have to eat all the food.) It’s enough to make you crawl into bed, pull the covers over your head, and wait for December.

But since that’s not a viable option (it’s not, right?), I have an alternate solution: Read some funny mystery stories involving Thanksgiving foods. There’s nothing like a good laugh to help you relax and cope, especially when the laughs come from stories about fictional characters suffering through far worse Thanksgivings than you ever have (I hope).

What book is it that will dispel the gloom and doom? It’s The Killer Wore Cranberry, an e-book that has nine funny crime stories, including my story “Biscuits, Carats, and Gravy.”

In this story, you meet Dotty, a neat-freak, Martha Stewart-wannabe grandmother whose whole family has come for Thanksgiving. Everything’s perfect until she learns her grand-nephew has proposed to an airhead who wants Dotty’s deceased mother’s engagement ring. That simply won’t do. So Dotty comes up with a plan to save the ring that involves cunning, deception, and some horrible, horrible gravy. But you know what they say about the best laid plans…

This anthology can be downloaded onto any e-reader, as well as as a PDF onto any computer. You also can buy any of the stories individually if you don’t want to buy the whole book. You should be able to find it at all the online bookstores, as well as from the publisher,, through its online store. In just a few minutes, you can be reading and laughing and forgetting all about the fact that your family is coming! In eleven days! Ahhhh!

Do you have any Thanksgiving horror stories you’d care to share? Please do. Remember, we’re all in this together!

As I prepared to write this post, I reached out to friends, asking for a gravy recipe. My story focuses on awful gravy, so I felt it important to provide a recipe for fabulous gravy. Most of my friends said that there is no recipe for gravy; you just make it from the turkey juices. Not very helpful. Thankfully my friend Elizabeth Amore-Yingling came through. She has her own gravy recipe, and we’re both happy to share it with you. Happy Thanksgiving!

Marvelous Mushroom Gravy

Serves 8


4 TBSP unsalted butter (½ stick)

2 shallots, finely minced

1 pound Cremini or mini Portobello mushrooms (cleaned and finely chopped)

¼ c flour

3 cups turkey or chicken stock

Kosher or sea salt to taste

¼ tsp dried thyme leaves

Finely ground white pepper


Melt butter in large saucepan over medium heat. Add shallots and sauté until soft, about one minute (do not brown). Add mushrooms and sauté (stir frequently) until mushrooms soften, about 5 minutes.

In a small bowl, whisk together the flour with ½ c chicken or turkey stock until the flour is dissolved (this helps prevent lumps!)

Add the remaining 2-½ cups of stock to the mushrooms in the pan and bring it to a simmer. Wisk in the flour/stock mixture and simmer until the gravy thickens (about 3-5 minutes). Add salt (approximately ¼ tsp.), dried thyme leaves and a pinch of white pepper to taste. Keep warm until ready to serve.


Barb Goffman is a two-time Agatha Award nominee for “The Worst Noel” from The Gift of Murder and “Murder at Sleuthfest” from Chesapeake Crimes II. Barb’s stories also have appeared in The Killer Wore Cranberry, Murder to Mil-Spec, the Deadly Ink 2010 Short Story Collection, Chesapeake Crimes: They Had It Comin’, and Chesapeake Crimes 3. A slightly altered version of her story “Volunteer of the Year” will be re-printed this winter in Magnolia Blossoms and Afternoon Tales. Barb is program chair of the Malice Domestic mystery convention, serves on the national board of Sisters in Crime, is a past president of the Chesapeake Chapter of Sisters in Crime, and is a coordinating editor of Chesapeake Crimes: This Job is Murder, due out in 2012. Learn more at