Saturday, November 30, 2013

The Eat to Live Cookbook Project: Brown Cremini Gravy

I can't stop thinking about Thanksgiving. It was wonderful. Totally relaxing for me, even though we were hosting 15 people. Why? Because I was ridiculously organized about the whole thing. Not to toot my own horn, but this kind of organization has become one of my strong suits.

I was conversing on Facebook yesterday about stuffing recipes and other Thanksgiving stuff, mentioning that I was going to record all of my notes and recipes so that next year would be even more of a breeze. Someone had asked if I could share those notes publicly, so here is the document that I created and will reference next year as I begin shopping for Thanksgiving:

Warning: I have not tested all of the recipes in that document. The untested recipes are labeled as such. The reason that I include them is because I like to get my thoughts down on paper as soon after the event as possible, when my creative juices are flowing about what I would like to improve upon for next time. That way I'm not racking my brain next year wondering what it was that I wanted to do next time.

Second warning: The recipes are not all SOS free. I'm working my way more toward that as I become more and more comfortable cooking this way and getting the food to taste delicious even without salt, oil or sugar. But cooking for myself and my husband is one thing. Cooking for a crowd of relatives who are not SOS free (let alone Vegan) is a whole 'nother animal. I want the food to be healthy, but I still want everyone to enjoy it. It's a bit of a balancing act, but I'm getting better at it all of the time.

Brown Cremini Gravy
from The Eat to Live Cookbook by Dr. Joel Fuhrman, p. 105

Did I like it? So yummy. Yes.

Was it easy to make with readily available ingredients? This was a total last minute addition to our Thanksgiving menu, and all of the ingredients were pantry staples except for the fresh mushrooms, which I happened to have an extra container of on Thanksgiving morning. So that's a yes.

What specifically did I like about the recipe? It's not your typical gravy. It's got all of this texture and bite because of the onions and mushrooms. It would be great all year round, just on top of a potato or some steamed greens.

What specifically didn't I like about the recipe? I wasn't sure if I was using too many onions. What is "one medium onion" anyway? I much prefer precise measurements, like "one cup" or "two cups." My gravy ended up very onion heavy, which was not a bad thing, just a little unusual.

The recipe also called for the onions to be sliced and not diced. Maybe it's just me, but I think the texture of the gravy would have been a lot better had the onions been finely minced. My gravy was so full of long strings of onion that it was almost a bit weird. But the flavor much to my liking, so I'm still a big fan of this recipe.

Did my husband like it? He likes pretty much everything I'm finding out. He's not a picky eater at all.

Did my teenage daughter like it? Yes, but maybe not as much as I did.

Did my eight or five year old try it? Uuuuugh, this is so not the cookbook for them.

Would I make it again? Absolutely yes, this is going on my regular Thanksgiving menu and I'll probably revisit it at other times of the year.

Is there anything I would do to improve on it if I made it again? I would mince the onion. And use less onion than I did this time.

Overall Grade (completely unscientific, I admit): A

Have you made Dr. Fuhrman's Brown Cremini Gravy? What were your impressions? Or do you already have a total favorite Vegan gravy recipe? If you do, let us know which one it is. Leave a comment below.

Still don't have the book? What are you waiting for? These recipes are holiday worthy.

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