For those who already know the basics of making lump free gravy, one of the tricks to making a “great” tasting gravy is to use many of the common tips you’ve no doubt read about on Helium. Lump free doesn’t mean that you have great tasting gravy, all it means is that you were able to make it without having all those lumps throughout. Lump free gravy can be accomplished quite easily, and the way to do so is to add the flour or corn starch to a cup or container with very cold water.
Whisk briskly until smooth, but first, pour a little “un-floured” water into the skillet so as to free up the browning that forms. Once it starts to bubble and free up the browning, then begin to stir in the floured water. Keep adding a little at a time and stir briskly until you get the desired thickness.
Now for great tasting gravy once you’ve mastered the lumps. The caramelizing brings to life the taste of any gravy that you’ve mastered making lump free. Adding butter, or onion/garlic powder, salt pepper etc. also increases your chances of a much better tasting gravy. Never over season or over do anything you add.
Gravy made from the meat juices without the caramelizing tends to be bland in flavor and needs help. You can always cook down some or all of the liquid juices to a point where all the moisture just about evaporates and leaves behind the magic sugars that begin to brown, not dark.
You don’t want it to start to completely dry and start to smoke. Once that happens you can add a little water to pan which will bubble profusely as it re hydrates. You then can add your flowered water with moderate seasoning to the pan and the gravy turns a perfect color, and best of all the tastiest.
On occasion I make a gravy so heavenly I feel ashamed.
One great tip for getting more drippings out of what ever meats you are frying is to brown both sides of the meat, and then slip it into the toaster over, or regular oven to finish cooking. What this does is slowly release a lot more of the flavorful juices from the meat, and provides for a lot more gravy than by just stove top cooking.
Just don’t over do the amount of floured water. You want a balance of thickener and drippings to get the most flavor from the meats and not diluted by flour water.