No.127 Christmas Make Ahead Smoked Garlic & Mushroom Gravy

Good gravy takes time. In my mind, whether it is Christmas or Thanksgiving, this is something you can do the week before and then store in the freezer. On the day pull it out of the freezer ready to go making your life easier, but not compromising on flavour.

This is a very robust gravy. Smoked garlic is easier to find now a days but if your struggling to find it, it works well with normal garlic. The dried mushrooms add a strong Unami note. Alcohol is optional in this but you really do need the cider vinegar to balance the gravy. This gravy can easily compete with my smoked turkey (coming soon) or gamey heritage breed turkeys.

Time: 2 and a half hours

Serves: 10 plus, makes at least 800ml of gravy

Difficulty: Take your time

Day(s) before

1kg/2.2 pounds of Chicken Wings Or Turkey Bones.

1 bulb of Smoked Garlic

2 Carrots

2 Onions

2 ribs of Celery

2 Bay Leaves

2 tablespoons of Dried Mushrooms

10 Black peppercorns

25ml of Cider Vinegar

25ml of Whiskey or Brandy

Worcestershire Sauce

To make stock:


1. Roughly chop the celery, onion and carrot and add to a large pot that can fit in your oven. Add the chicken or turkey to the pot with the garlic bulb halved though the middle (skin and all). Add the mushroom, peppercorns, bay leaves and 150ml of water.

2. Put into the oven and Cook for 1 hour and 30 minutes at 160 degrees Celsius (320 degrees Fahrenheit). Ensure you turn the contents of the pot half way through.

3. After this time remove from the oven. Add the whiskey or brandy at this point if you want followed by 1.5L of water. Simmer for 30 minutes.

4. Remove the solids from the pot. Use a wooden spoon to help you deglaze the pan removing anything that has stuck to the sides.

5. Pass the liquid from the pot through a sieve. Repeat this to ensure no solids have slipped though.

6. Taste. Add salt and Worcestershire sauce as required. Add in the vinegar to cut some of the rich flavour. If too rich tasting dilute with water.

7. Leave to cool before storing in the fridge. If making a head store in the freezer.

On the Day

800ml of prepared Stock

3 tablespoons of Butter (Unsalted)

3 tablespoons of Plain Flour

1. Make a beurre manié – basically mix the flour and butter into a paste.

2. Reheat the stock.

3. Add a tablespoon at a time of the beurre manié and whisk. Add a tablespoon at a time until you reach your desired thickness. Serve.

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