Friday, October 7, 2011


There comes a point in your cooking career - and yes, if you make dinner more often than not, even if you don't get paid for it, it's a career - where you start to think you're actually pretty good. You may consider this the point when your food is perfectly cook every time. It may be when you develop a recipe of your own. It may be when you start to cook by taste and improve on your grandma's recipe for your favorite stew. Wherever that point may be, it exists. You start to think highly of yourself. You start to shun particular types of restaurant food because you can make it better.

And then, if you're me, you colossally fuck up a majorly easy dinner and remember that you're not Gordon Ramsay. You're Brianne and human and still prone to errors sometimes. Bloody hell.

Last night I *tried* to make fried breakfast sausages with sauteed spinach, VWAV baking powder biscuits, and mushroom gravy. I made the sausages. And burnt them like only the flames of hell can burn a sausage. The spinach? Had a weird piece of plastic in it. The biscuits? Flat and over cooked.

The mushroom gravy turned out great. Thank god, because otherwise I would have quit cooking for the rest of the month. It could almost disguise the charred flavour of the sausages. Almost.

Need a great gravy recipe? Here you are.

Mushroom Gravy

3 tbsp olives oil
8 oz cremini mushrooms, sliced
2 shallots, cut in half and sliced thinly
3 cloves of garlic, crushed
3 tbsp flour
2 c veg broth

Heat the oil in a pan over medium heat. Add the mushrooms and shallots and saute until mushrooms are soft. Add the garlic and cook 30 more seconds.

Add the flour. Stir to coat the vegetables completely. Stirring often, cook the flour and oil until it is slightly golden, 5 minutes or so.

Stream in the first half cup of broth while stirring constantly. Add the rest of the broth, bring heat up to high and bring to a boil. Let boil for 7 or 8 minutes, stirring occasionally, until desired thickness is achieved. Add salt and pepper to taste. Gravy will thicken more as it cools, as well.

Other things you can do:
sub 1/2 c (or more, you wino) of broth for white wine
add a tablespoon of dijon mustard to the broth
add dried herbs when you add the broth: dried tarragon would work well


  1. nice post - resonates with me - I know how to cook but every now and again it just doesn't work no matter what I do - this week I made a soup that needed seasoning so desperately that when I took it to work I found myself dipping into the sugar that is meant for tea and coffee just to give my soup a little extra flavour than salt and pepper could

  2. Ha, I've had some real cooking disasters too & I'm sure I will again!