Many sauces and gravies are made from a fat, mixed with a starchy substance, the two mingled with a liquid. The fat gives flavor and nutriment, the starch is used for thickening, the liquid also gives flavor. You are now familiar with the cooking of fat and starch, and can readily understand that the combination of all these ingredients is not an easy matter. The fat will float upon the top of the liquid unless the right amount of starch or flour is used, and the flour will have a tendency to lump. There are several good methods in use. The method given for your experiment is one of the simplest, because it uses only a few utensils, and gives uniformly good results. It requires no more watchfulness than the other methods.
These sauces and gravies are not foods for little children and invalids.
1 tablespoonful of fat, 1 of flour, 1/2 pint liquid.
2 tablespoonfuls of fat, 2 of flour, \ pint liquid.
3 tablespoonfuls of fat 3 of flour, 1/2 pint liquid. Salt is used to taste.
Melt the fat in a saucepan. Pour in the flour, all at once, and stir the flour and fat together, until the mass thickens slightly. Pour in all the liquid at once, cold. Set the saucepan where the heat is moderate.
Stir steadily with a wooden spoon until the mixture thickens.
6. A tomato sauce is made with butter or beef fat, strained tomato juice the liquid. Cook a piece of onion, a sprig of parsley, or a small portion of dried herbs, and a clove with the tomato before straining, if these flavors are liked.
7. A brown sauce or meat gravy may be made in the same way, using beef fat, and (as the liquid) water that has been poured into the pan in which the meat is cooked. When you are familiar with cooking there is an easier way for thickened meat gravies, as follows:
Pour off some of the fat from the meat pan. Set the pan upon the stove and stir in the flour, - about two tablespoonfuls for the ordinary roasting pan. When the flour is thoroughly mixed in, add about a pint of water, cold or warm, and stir again. Pour this mixture through a strainer. With practice you can make an excellent gravy in this way. It requires judgment to proportion the flour and liquid to the material in the pan.