Makes about 3 cups
Gravy can make or break a meal. A good gravy should be translucent and glistening, not a dull, opaque paste. The secret is in the roux. What is a roux. A roux is a mixture of fat of some sort and flour. In some applications the fat and flour are blended together and used as is. For a truly great gravy, I think the best type is a cooked roux; the flour and fat are cooked together over a slow heat until they are a rich golden or chestnut brown. Then, and only then is the liquid added.
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 small onion, chopped finely
1 clove of garlic, finely minced
A pinch of mixed dry herbs – (Italian seasoning)
2 cups of sliced small mushrooms
2 tablespoons of olive oil, margarine or non-dairy butter
2 tablespoons whole wheat or all-purpose flour
About 2 ½ cups of vegetable stock or Court Bouillon
Salt and fresh black pepper to taste
Heat the first spoon of olive oil in a heavy skillet and gently sauté the onion, garlic and herbs until the onion is pinkish and translucent but not yet beginning to brown. Add the mushrooms and continue to sauté until the mushrooms are hot through. You may find you will need to add a bit more oil. Mushrooms are very thirsty. Remove from the skillet and set aside. Heat the 2 tablespoons of oil and flower together over a medium-high heat, stirring constantly until a nut-brown color is achieved. Add the stock and using a wire whisk, whisk constantly until smooth. Reduce the heat to maintain a rapid simmer and continue to cook, whisking occasionally, for about five minutes. Add the mushroom mixture and simmer until hot through. Season to taste with salt and pepper and simmer for another minute or two. Serve hot.