There are some things I just can’t get right. My mother in law’s raspberry jello salad, crispy fried chicken, & gravy. But last night I conquered gravy!!
::the personal cheer squad in my head goes wild!::
My gravy always starts out too thin, so the recipes always tell you to add cornstarch. I add & add, but it never thickens up. Then it starts to lump up on me, even though I’ve mixed the cornstarch with a liquid before adding to the pan. By time I’m done, I’ve got a thin, lumped up, bland tasting gravy that no one wants to slather over their mashed tators. 😦
A while back, during my usual blog perusing, I read a tip that I stored away in my mental files of “try THIS next time!” I have no idea which blog it was I read this on because I follow so many, but I certainly would cite it if I remembered! Bloggers get real edgy about you not citing them. I’ve seen some pretty nasty comments left by people who feel they’ve been plagiarized. What is funny is most things that are on blogs all came from some other magazine or cookbook that came out 20 years ago, but hey, that info is THEIRS! Sorry, little pet peeve of mine that I had to have a mini rant on.
Anyway, back to the gravy! To thicken your gravy without turning it into a lumpy, tasteless goo, use POTATO FLAKES! Hush if this is not news to you! I think it’s brilliant! Last night I made Pioneer Woman’s Salisbury Steak with mashed potatoes. As I started the gravy, it was going down a familiar road. Too thin to start, added cornstarch & it immediately lumped up on me. I fished out the cornstarch lumps & remembered POTATO FLAKES! I happened to have some on hand because I love mashed potatoes & always have some instant in the cupboard for when the mood hits me! These happened to be Loaded Baked Potato flavored. I hesitated a minute thinking the bacon flavor may throw off my gravy’s taste, but then thought, hey…I bet that would make it taste even better!
It took about a tablespoon of flakes to thicken up my gravy. It worked fast, & the taste? Oh, good gravy! It was fantastic. Best gravy I have ever made!! I dumped out the cornstarch from my Argo container, cleaned it out & filled it back up with the unused potato flakes (because it is a great little container), & labeled it POTATO FLAKES, then smiled. 🙂 I will no longer have cornstarch in my house. I have no use for it! I used to use it as a GREAT diaper rash paste, but I don’t have babies of my own anymore, so I didn’t hesitate one bit about tossing it out.
So that is my helpful hint of the day. Thin gravy? Add potato flakes! They thicken & flavor all at once! Brilliant!
Til next time, kids, don’t eat lumpy gravy anymore! You deserve better!
* A little bonus for you!
Cornstarch Diaper Rash Paste
Put some cornstarch in a small dish, I start out with 2 tablespoons & add more as I go along
Add enough water to turn the cornstarch into a glue consistency, kinda like my old gravy
“Paste” your baby’s bottom with the mixture, poor remaining paste into the diaper
Diaper rash will diminish with each application. Be careful when changing the next diaper because the cornstarch will have dried into powdery clumps. Messy! But boy does it work great!
If the diaper rash is really bad, make a cornstarch bath & let baby soak in it for 10 min. or so.
This works way better & faster than the name brand diaper creams! Cheaper too!