People freak out about gravy. I don’t know why. Gravy is easy as pie. Actually, a hell of a lot easier than pie. All it is, is a delicious, rich stock thickened with flour. In cooking school, they call it velouté, French for velvety. You take a great stock and give it a velvety texture. Flour-thickened sauces got a bad name when bad “French” restaurants served heavy terrible sauces. Properly prepared, flour-thickened sauces are light, flavorful, and refreshing. I prefer them to heavy reductions which, prepared thoughtlessly, are gluey with protein and make the tongue stick to the palate. The key is dispersing the flour uniformly through the sauce. We do this by combining the fat (butter, rendered chicken or turkey fat) so that the granules of flour are each coated with fat to prevent Read On »
Posts Categorized: Holiday
In preparation for Thanksgiving, America’s biggest home-cooking day, I’ll be addressing a few of the most common issues and frequently asked questions about the basics: roasting turkey and making gravy. Friday, I’ll be introducing an innovate and in my opinion the best possible way to roast a whole turkey (it involves a dual method and resulted last year in Donna’s saying, “This is the best roasted turkey we’ve ever had.”) But first things first: make turkey stock now so that you have it on hand to make gravy. I don’t know where we got the idea that a roasting turkey results enough juices to make gravy. It doesn’t. And you certainly want to have way too much gravy on Thanksgiving so that you have leftovers. My favorite day-after meal is hot turkey sandwiches, smothered in Read On »
Shauna & Daniel Ahern share a list of recipes that are gluten-free for Thanksgiving, via Gluten Free Girl.
Epiphany has passed. Did you have your galette des rois (kings’ cake)? A French dessert comprised of puff pastry, frangipane and a ceramic figure, via the Huffington Post.
I’m not one for New Year’s resolutions, but I am for recognizing good fortune when it comes my way. In a career blessed with good luck, high on the list are the people I’m able to work with. The above card lifted my spirits when I received it. It was created by Joleen Hughes, who, with her husband David, run a design firm called Level in the Napa Valley. David is the one responsible for the playful nature of the book Ad Hoc, and so much more. It is a pleasure to work with these two people who rarely get enough recognition. I’m grateful to you, David and Joleen! Joleen designed the card for Thomas Keller, another person I’m incredibly lucky to work with, along with every single member of his team I encounter. Brian Read On »