I’m going to let you in on a little secret.
When I first married my husband, I despised country gravy. This gravy is also known as white gravy or milk gravy.
His family thought it should be on every meal, and my husband’s favorite meal was biscuits and gravy. As the years have gone by my taste buds have adjusted.
I’m still not a huge fan of biscuits and gravy, but I love country gravy on my mashed potatoes or fried chicken.
However, when my mother-in-law made country gravy, it seemed like a chore. She’d work herself to death throwing more flour, a little more milk, and continue this back and forth until the mixture was right.
This made me want no part of it until I learned this new trick when watching Tim Farmer’s Country Kitchen. (I’ve tweaked the recipe a little to suit our taste a little more.)
It’s now the only way my husband and I will make gravy, and I wanted to share it with you too. Here’s the simple way to make country gravy:
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 2 cups whole milk
- 1/3 cup of flour
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Sausage (optional)
- Mixing bowl
1. Heat the Lard
To make country gravy, you can use any non-stick skillet you’d like. My preference is to use a large cast iron skillet.
This skillet will make enough for my family of five to enjoy a decent sized breakfast with enough gravy leftover for those who want to have seconds.
Plan ahead with your skillet choice because it can be the difference between a delicious meal or a mess on your stove.
Once you choose the right pan, put it on the stove over medium or medium-high heat. I’m a little cautious with my cast iron because it retains heat well.
Therefore, I usually go with medium heat. Place one tablespoon of lard in your skillet. No need to be scientific about it. A substantial dollop will get the job done.
As the lard melts in your skillet start the process of making a delicious gravy. Keep an eye on your skillet to make sure the lard doesn’t become too hot. If it’s popping, your temperature is too high.
Remove the pan from the burner, turn the stove down, and give everything time to settle down before you put the pan over the burner again.
2. Fry the Sausage
This step is optional, but I’m a fan of sausage gravy. If you’re using store-bought sausage, you may not need to add lard to your skillet.
However, I use sausage we’ve raised and ground ourselves. In most cases, our sausage is leaner than store-bought.
Therefore, I add the lard in the bottom of my skillet and add the sausage to it to fry. It’s common to add more lard at times depending on how much fat the sausage contains.
Fry the sausage and break it up with a spoon or spatula. Stir the sausage around in the pan until brown and no pink remains.
3. Make Your Gravy Mix
If you skipped the previous step, you could pick up here to make basic and delicious milk gravy.
While the lard and pan are heating up, it’s time to make the gravy mix. This is what blew my mind when I first learned how to make gravy this way.
I spent a great deal of time watching my mother-in-law make gravy and work hard to add the exact amounts needed of milk and flour to make sure the gravy wasn’t too thick or too runny.
If only she’d known how easy gravy could’ve been. We referred to country gravy as “Nana’s gravy” because it seemed the rest of us didn’t stand a chance at making it correctly.
Now we know how to make our gravy mix and are quick to jump at the chance to make it now. With all this said, pull out your favorite mixing bowl and prepare for your mind to be blown.
Once the bowl is out, make sure you have a whisk on hand too.
Pour one cup of buttermilk in the gravy. If you don’t like the tanginess of buttermilk, you can use regular milk.
If you prefer buttermilk over regular milk gravy, use buttermilk. It’s up to you. Add a 1/3 cup of flour to the milk and whisk it all together until there are no lumps.
You can use any flour you like. My husband prefers to use self-rising where I usually stick with all-purpose.
Play around with it until you find your preference.
4. Throw It in the Pan
After all the flour and milk have been whisked together, it’s time to toss it all in the skillet. Mix the gravy around in the skillet and stir continuously to avoid lumps.
When the gravy reaches a low boil, you should begin to see it thickening in appearance. If the gravy reaches your desired thickness before boiling, remove it from the heat.
If not, allow the gravy to reach a low boil and continue to stir. The gravy should thicken and be ready to serve over a biscuit or a crispy piece of fried chicken.
Be sure to add salt and pepper to taste when the gravy has reached the desired thickness and has been removed from the burner.
Stir the gravy well after you add your desired seasonings.
5. Making Corrections to your Country Gravy
This way of making gravy is simple, but there may be a time when you notice your gravy is too thick or too thin.
I mean, it’s gravy! It can happen. Don’t worry because as easy as it was to whip up the gravy, it’s as simple to fix it.
If your gravy is too thick, add a tablespoon of milk at a time until you reach the desired thickness. If your gravy is too thin, add a tablespoon of flour at a time.
Be sure to whisk it all together to avoid lumps and add more flour until the gravy is as thick as you desire.
Everyone has a different preference when it comes to gravy. I like my gravy extremely thick where my husband loves it right as it passes the point of being considered runny.
Play around with it until you master your preferences.
Thanks to this easy way of making gravy, it is no longer a chore. It’s easy, you don’t have to have the ‘old school’ cooking chops to master it, and it’s an inexpensive way to add a great deal of flavor to your cooking.
The next time you have a craving for old-school country cooking, remember this fuss-free country gravy recipe.