Sunday, January 22, 2012

Simple Survival Meals - The Gravy Solution

When it comes down to making simple survival meals, you may want to make your survival meals a much more palatable experience by getting on the “gravy train”. Gravy has been used by many different cultures to turn simple meals into ones that come close to being a gourmet feast. Improving the quality of your survival meals is often a simple process and few things are simpler than adding a little gravy to your survival meal.

Unfortunately, even simple things require a little attention to detail. Gravy has a tendency to range from the inedible to better than the actual meal itself. This usually depends upon who’s making it. Gravy recipes are some of the most closely guarded secrets in the world of cooking. In fact, it may be easier to get the location of someone’s survival cache before they’ll give up their recipe for gravy. So before you start trying to figure out the most effective methods of “gentle persuasion” to get grandma to give up her gravy recipe, here are a few simple tips that will help most anyone be able to make a decent gravy.

Simple Survival Tips for Making Gravy

Tip #1: Start out by using stock for gravy that is room temperature.

Tip #2: If your gravy is too thick, add a little more stock to the mixture.

Tip #3: If it's too thin, keep it on the stove until excess liquid boils away.

Tip #4: If it’s still to thin, add a little more thickener to your gravy.

Tip #5: Stir your gravy constantly. This prevents burning or getting lumps.

Tip #6: Use a metal spoon for stirring. It’s easier to flatten the lumps.

Tip #7: Use spices, herbs and other seasonings to enhance the flavor.

Tip #8: Pre-cooked meat, sausage or eggs can also be added to your gravy.

Tip #9: Make the consistency appropriate to the meal being served.

Tip #10: If all else fails, use “gentle persuasion techniques” on grandma.

If you find yourself in a survival situation and someone happens to asks you “What’s cooking?” You don’t need to inform them that the bread is a little stale or the biscuits are kind of hard. Just say “Don’t worry. We’re gravy!”

It’s always best to keep things simple when your survival is a concern and when you’ve got a decent meal, everything else is “gravy”. BTW, please feel free to leave your gravy recipes in the comments section.

Got gravy recipe?

Staying above the watered-down gravy line!



Anonymous said...

Thanks for the tips sir. I'm thinking after SHTF, foods are going to get pretty bland because of the lack of ingredients. Gravy will be a Godsend. I keep a few packets in the refrigerator for just in case.

SciFiChick said...

I'd give ya my gravy recipe RW but then I'd have to kill ya! :D

John said...

Yep, gravy can make a big difference. When I was a kid, one of my favorite dishes was bread and gravy or toast and gravy. Tear up the bread before pouring the gravy over it. Sometimes a little bit of hamburger in the gravy on top of the bread or toast was good, too.
Think also of the proverbial S.O.S. which makes use of gravy and chipped beef.

tweell said...

I'm a fan of the large gravy powder containers at Costco. For a couple bucks, they give you a lot of gravy!
For white or 'country' gravy, I go with a standard white sauce (2tbsp butter or oil, 2 tbsp flour, 1 cup milk [can sub powdered milk], 1/2 tsp salt and pepper to taste). Melt the butter, mix in the flour and salt, then add the milk while mixing. Heat until it starts to boil, mixing frequently. Then it's thick and ready for use.

kymber said...

RW - i looooove gravey! and i can eat eat mashed potatoes and gravey 35 times a day. but i am with SciFiChick - if i shared my gravey recipe with know...

anyway - awesome post, my friend! thanks for always keeping it real and keeping it above the waterline!

your friend,

HossBoss said...

To avoid lumps, dissolve your thickening agent completely in a bit of cold water BEFORE you add it to the stock. Once added, turn up the heat and use a whisk.

I grew up making gravy from scratch but got used to having the packet gravy mixes for convenience and then went to the larger gravy powder containers from the warehouse stores for price. I'm back to making it from scratch because you can't BEAT the price, or the taste.

: )

riverwalker said...

To: anonymous 9:54

You're welcome.

It's really amazing how something simple like a little gravy can change a meal into something that's tasty and satisfying.

Thanks anon.


riverwalker said...

To: SciFiChick

...but I thought I asked nicely? (a "gentle persuasion technique")

What if I didn't tell anyone else your recipe and promised to keep it a secret?


riverwalker said...

To: John

My father was a Naval veteran and my mother mad a "home-made" version of S.O.S. quite frequently...often enough that I've ate my fair share and then some.

Thanks John.


riverwalker said...

To: tweell

Thanks for the recipe. It sounds like the basic Mrs. RW uses a lot but when I make it myself it doesn't turn out quite the same.

I figure she's got a "stealth" ingredient that makes a difference.

Thanks tweell.


riverwalker said...

To: kymber

I bet you've got some great recipes for gravy that taste really good you might consider sharing!
(this is another "gentle persuasion" technique..flattery)

What do you call mashed potatoes covered with gravy?

"Stealth" mashed potatoes!

Thanks kymber.


riverwalker said...

To: HossBoss

While some of the prepackaged gravy mixes are OK, it's hard to beat gravy made from scratch.

Thanks for the additional tip.

Things like corn starch can be mixed separately to help avoid lumps when thickening your gravy.

Thanks Hoss.


HermitJim said...

Now my mouth is watering for some biscuits and gravy!

I can eat that for a main dish or for dessert! Makes me happy either way!

riverwalker said...

To: HermitJim

Biscuits and gravy...there is no substitute!

Thanks Jim.


Anonymous said...

Gravy is kinda like bacon, it makes just about everything better.

When I have time I make my own gravy, but I also buy McCormick gravy mix in 21oz containers at Sams Club.

It's quick, tastes good, and it's more consistent than my home made gravy.
The brown gravy also makes a great thickener for beef stew, just don't get carried away or you'll have gravy stew.

If you want to try it before buying the chef's size container, you can buy small packets in any grocery store, but you'll pay for the larger container with just a few packets. The packets would be good for a bug out bag though.

One of the best reasons to use instant gravy is because it's quicker than from scratch. It will require less fuel and time. That might be important in a survival situation.

Anonymous said...

Also don't forget Idahoan potato flakes. They are the best instant mashed potatos I've found. WalMart carried them last I checked.

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