Country Gravy…SOS?

It’s funny how one can remember recipes from  decades ago.  One of the first recipes I learned as a cook in the Marines was “creamed beef” – or country gravy. Every morning, Every day. We were required to have our recipe in front of us at all times. Gather our mise en place. This was instilled into each cook as a foundation to ensure we prepared and cooked each recipe with precision and accuracy.

So last Sunday, I decided to serve buttermilk biscuits and country gravy on our buffet station at my job. I haven’t made country gravy in YEARS! I gathered my ingredients together and began this nostalgic journey in recreating a classic breakfast gravy.

Here is the recipe:

5# ground beef (or ground turkey; ground pork/sausage)

1 medium yellow onion, diced

5 Tbl salt/pepper

2 cups flour

2 Qt heavy cream

1 cup Worcestershire sauce

First, break up the ground beef in a stock pot over medium flame. Add the diced onion, salt , and pepper. Brown the beef until the pink is gone. The onions should be translucent and soft. There should be some rendered grease (fat) from the ground beef. This is okay and needed for the next step.

Add the flour and mix thoroughly. You need to ensure the flour is incorporated into the grease. This is what forms the “roux” – that will help thicken the gravy later on. Continue to cook the beef mixture for a few minutes.

Add the heavy cream in a steady stream while stirring continuously. Be sure to incorporate the cream with the beef mixture. Next, add the Worcestershire sauce. Allow creamed mixture to simmer for ten minutes.

 Now there are other variations of this – S.O.S. – Shit On a Shingle.  The most popular variation is with chipped beef, usually sliced thin and salted or cured. Personally, I enjoy the creamed beef recipe above. It is what I’ve come to associate with breakfast. But creamed beef is simple and versatile. Add some hot sauce (sriracha, anyone?!)? Or maybe some smoked chipotle peppers?

Until next time…#ForkThisPlate


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