Kevin Kruger Brisket Gravy - BBQ Central

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Old 07-17-2005, 06:05 AM   #1
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Kevin Kruger Brisket Gravy

Kevin posted this reply to another post about gravy. I thought it would be great to post it here!
Nick P.


Drippings can be a little smoke-heavy tasted straight, but that can be ameliotated with the addition of other ingredients. For a gravy for brisket I'd skip the flour and thicken with aromatics and by reduction instead. The big deal is to watch the salt levels of the ingredients prior to the reducing as you can end up with a salty finish if you don't. For liquids I'd consider beer and a blend of low-sodium chicken and beef stocks.

While the meat cooks roast a couple heads of garlic (top 1/3 lopped off, drizzled with a little evoo, wrapped in foil) in the cooker or oven till tender (350, 50-60 min). Meanwhile, saute a couple chopped medium onions in unsalted butter (or evoo) over med-high heat till browned in spots, about 12-15 min. Add a hefty splash of whatever beer you're drinking, a large pinch of thyme, and the flesh of a chopped peeled ripe medium tomato (remove the stem from the tomato, dip in boiling water for a few seconds, then peel off the skin; halve crosswise and gently squeeze out the juice and seeds--or use a 1/3 can of drained diced tomato). Add a pinch of rub and a t of Dijon, yellow, or brown mustard; stir; remove from heat and reserve. Whenever the roasted garlic is finished, squeeze the heads into the pot.


Drippings can burn during the cook sometimes (this occurs more frequently at higher temps) but some water in the drip pan will prevent that. But look at your drip pan at the end of the cook. If the drippings look good, deglaze the pan with water, scraping up and dissolving the stuck on bits from the bottom. Shoot for around 3/4 cup of drippings--add more water if needed or reduce if needed. Pour into a separator, if desired; reserve.

[If you find the drippings unusable for whatever reason, mix 2 T unsalted butter with 3/4 cup low-sodium beef broth (or mix 3 parts low-salt chicken stock with 1 part regular beef if low-sodium beef is unavailable) and pour into the foil when you rest the brisket.]

To finish the gravy bring the onion-tomato-roasted garlic mix to a simmer. Add the 3/4 c drippings you reserved (or get it from the resting meat's foil), stir, cover and simmer about 5 min. Puree the contents of the pot in a blender, in batches if necessary, adding a splash of half-and-half or milk here and there till smooth. Return to the pot. (Force through a sieve if you want it ultra-smooth.) Reduce if needed for a thicker consistency; add beef or chicken stock, or more drippings if available, for a thinner consistency. Taste for salt and pepper.

Okay--so that's what flew through my head just now.

For a version using a roux, I'd still saute an onion in unsalted butter or evoo till browned in spots and then add a clove or two of minced garlic with a pinch of rub and some thyme and cook it just till fragrant, another minute or so. To this I'd sprinkle in 1 T or so of flour, whisking the whole time, and cook the flour a couple minutes. Then I'd add about 1/4 c beer and 3/4 c low-sodium beef stock (or a blend of chicken and beef as noted above) and whisk well till the mix is well-blended (you could add the tomato as noted above here, if desired). I'd reserve this. When the dripping were ready (again, as noted above) I'd return the onion mix to the heat, get it simmering, then add the drippings, a few T at a time. This I'd puree in a blender with a little half-and-half or milk to smooth the flavors, return to the stove and thicken by reducing, or thin with more dripping or stock.

Just a thought.
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