Brown gravy gets it’s color though several different methods. If the broth you use is very brown, then this will make your gravy the right color. Some people add Kitchen Bouquet liquid browning sauce. It’s available in a small bottle, usually near the gravy packets or bouillon cubes at your supermarket. Kitchen Bouquet is gluten free.
Another method, seldom used these days, is to brown the flour in a little fat before preparing the gravy. This is the method used in this recipe. It’s a little tricky the first time you do it, but not difficult. I like this method because it’s very inexpensive and uses common ingredients I always have in my kitchen. The toasted flour adds to the flavor of the gravy while giving it a lovely brown color and superior texture. Toasting rice flour (or any flour really) greatly diminishes it’s thickening properties. In this recipe additional rice flour (untoasted) is added to the gravy to thicken it to a proper consistency.
Serve this gravy with pot roast, meat loaf, Salisbury or country style steaks, or simply over mashed potatoes. You’ll be pleased with the flavor, texture and affordability.
Perfect Brown Gravy
- 2 tablespoons dairy-free margarine or beef (hamburger) fat
- 1/4 cup rice flour
- 2 -1/4 cups beef broth (made from bouillon powder or cubes is fine)
- 1 tablespoon low-sodium soy sauce
- 2 teaspoons onion powder
- Dash pepper
- 2 (more) tablespoons rice flour
- 1/4 cup cool water
Melt the margarine in a 1 or 1-1/2 quart saucepan. Add 1/4-cup rice flour and stir it until it absorbs the fat. Continue cooking and stirring, over medium-high heat until the flour starts to brown. Watch it closely. When it starts to brown it will brown quickly. Allow the flour to sizzle until it’s golden brown. You don’t want it to burn, so stay at the stove, cooking and stirring until the flour is browned to your liking. I like it the color of coffee with cream.
Remove the pan from the heat and immediately add the beef broth (or water and bouillon). Stir it up to dissolve the flour into the broth. Add the soy sauce, onion powder and black pepper.
Meanwhile, dissolve 2-tablespoons of rice flour in 1/4-cup cool water. I do this in a coffee cup, simply stirring it together with a fork. When the gravy on the stove is boiling, stir in the flour/water mixture. Cook and stir for several minutes, or until the gravy is well thickened.
If you want a browner gravy then you may add 1/2-teaspoon instant coffee or a few drops of Kitchen Bouquet.
Makes about 2-1/2 cups.