Derek Johnson Muses

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A Little Cornstarch…Goes a Long Way

Making gravy is a struggle for me. I can never get the corn starch to to completely dissolve in the juice, so I spend eight minutes standing over the stove stewing over the little clumps that remain in the first serving. But somehow, the lumps resolve themselves when I put the leftover gravy in the fridge, and aren’t there when I eat the rest of it. There must be some little thing that I’m doing wrong.

But recently, I had some leftover pot roast, and I decided to take a new approach to making gravy. First, I mixed the bouillon with water and got it boiling.

The Boiling Sauce Pan

Then I tried something new: mixing up the cornstarch with the spices, namely oregano, garlic powder,  and thyme leaves, with seasoned salt. Probably an odd pallet, but it gives a plethora of sensation with balance.

The Bowl

Then I mix it together with a fork to break up the clumps, then I drizzle some of the juice in an attempt to mix a small amount of juice with it to wet all of the corn starch. But the juice on the stove is boiling away, so I add in the cornstarch mix, little by little, whipping it around and attacking the clumps with my wire whisk. I still get lumps in the finished product.

Sigh. I know that there must a better way. Perhaps if I turned the temperature down on the stove a little more toward the end, it would just naturally thicken. Or I’m just resigned to years corn starch lumps in my gravy. Maybe I could get used to the taste of corn starch.


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