Christina Peters, The Food Shooter, and I decided we needed to make a second video using the Perfect Stock recipe and this is what we offer you today. You will have Perfect Gravy for your holiday, just follow our simple tips!
How to Make Mashed Potatoes!
1 medium organic* russet potato person
1 tablespoon Kosher salt
1 -2 tablespoons butter, REAL BUTTER, unsalted
1/2 cup milk (cream if you want to be decadent, or mix the two)
Sea Salt and pepper
1 tablespoon sour cream, optional
1 teaspoon chives, optional
1 tablespoon grated cheese, optional
Wash potatoes and then cut into large chunks, place into a large saucepan and cover with cool water. Add a tablespoon of Kosher salt, bring to a boil and cook until fork tender, about 15 minutes.
Heat the butter with the milk (I use the microwave). If you use the microwave wait to heat until the potatoes are cooked. Drain the potatoes and peel the skin off with tongs. For creamy soft mashed potatoes slip through a ricer into the still hot saucepan that you cooked them in (without any water!) If you don’t have a ricer just put the chunks back into the pan, place on the stove over low heat for a minute or two. This helps to dry them a little further so they absorb the butter and milk more evenly.
Add enough butter and milk (or cream) to the potatoes and lightly mashed with a potato masher, they should come together easily. Don’t overwork the potatoes or they can turn gummy. Season with sea salt and pepper to taste and add any optional ingredients, serve.
If you’re making potatoes for a crowd they can be made about 1 hour ahead of time and kept warm on low in a preheated slow cooker! (I don’t remember where I learned that trick but thank you to whoever it was that shared it)
*Organic potatoes, all kinds of pesticides and sprays are used on conventional potatoes to keep bugs from eating them while they grow. Then to harvest them and finally to keep them from sprouting in the store. Choose organic for your health.
How To Make Gravy
There are two methods to making a smooth and easy gravy. It’s much easier if you prepare or purchase a good turkey or chicken stock a few days ahead of time. Below you’ll find a recipe for home-made chicken/turkey stock if you prefer to make your own. Make it ahead of time, refrigerate for three days or freeze for up to three months. This will also make it easier to remove any fat that has congealed on the top.
The thickening agent in an easy gravy is flour, you could use cornstarch but if you cook it too long the cornstarch will start to break down. The two methods are Beurre Manie or Roux. Both can be made ahead of time and both can be refrigerated for weeks or frozen in to ‘logs’ and then you can cut off any amount you may need for your dish.
Both methods require equal amounts of fat and flour, usually butter. Use approximately 1 tablespoon of either mixture per cup of liquid/pan drippings. Any pan drippings should be added to the stock before adding the thickener. If you’d like to defat the pan drippings, pour off liquid and put into the freezer until it begins to harden, about 10 minutes, scrape the fat off the top of the drippings and add the liquid to any stock you are using. Bring to a boil and add thickener as described.
So on to the recipes!
Beurre Manie (Kneaded Butter)
In this case the thickener is added to the hot or boiling stock.
½ cup butter, unsalted and room temperature
½ cup flour
Place butter into a small bowl and mash flour into the butter with the back of a spoon until completely incorporated. Bring your stock to a boil and add Beurre Manie while whisking until thickened.
Also equal parts butter and flour but the stock or pan drippings are added to the hot melted roux.
Per cup of stock/pan drippings:
1 – 2 tablespoons butter
1 – 2 tablespoons flour
Add butter to a sauté pan and when melted, whisk in flour at all once, keep whisking until thickened and the flour has a chance to cook a little, maybe 1 minute. Add hot liquid while whisking into the roux.
Neither of these methods will result in any clumping as the flour has already bonded with the fat and will melt smoothly into your sauce.
Here’s a good basic ‘Enhanced Chicken Stock’ recipe: