And now for the vegetarian mushroom gravy that I promised you in yesterday’s post! This gravy is a must for the meatless Thanksgiving table. It’s so rich and savory that you’ll swear there’s something dead in there—but it’s 100% carcass-free.
While you can use plain old water to make this gravy, a flavorful mushroom broth will yield a much tastier result. You can find mushroom broth in many supermarkets—or make your own with a mushroom base like this one made by Better Than Bouillon. A flavorful vegetable broth will work fine too. Even better, use your reserved porcini-soaking water from yesterday’s Vegetarian Wild Mushroom “Meatloaf.”
As for the mushroom prep, you can chop them to whatever size you like—fine, chunky, or a combo. I chopped them by hand, rather than in the food processor, because I wanted the pieces to be small but not too small (see photo). But you can do it however you like.
Special thanks to Dorothy Corder for the inspiration, and for many wonderful years of gravy-filled Christmas dinners!
This rich, savory gravy can be made a couple of days in advance and kept in the fridge. Reheat on the stovetop or in the microwave, adding a little extra broth to thin. After thinning, you might want to adjust flavors by adding a dash more salt, pepper, soy sauce, lemon juice, and/or mushroom base.
- 6 tablespoons butter (¾ stick), divided
- 1 medium onion
- 2 large garlic cloves, minced
- ¾ pound domestic mushrooms (e.g., button, cremini, portobello), chopped
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- ½ cup sherry or wine
- ¼ cup flour
- 3 cups liquid (water, broth, or reserved porcini liquid from yesterday's Mushroom Meatloaf post)
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 2 teaspoons soy sauce
- Melt 2 tablespoons of the butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
- When butter is bubbly but not burning, add onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until onions are nicely browned and even a tiny bit burnt (8 to 12 minutes).
- Add garlic, mushrooms, salt, and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the juices from the mushrooms have been released and mostly cooked off.
- When the pan begins to get dry, deglaze with sherry or wine, continuing to cook for about minute more to let the sherry or wine reduce.
- Remove from heat.
- Transfer the mushroom mixture to a bowl and set aside. Give the pan a quick wipe with a paper towel and return to a medium-low heat. Melt the remaining 4 tablespoons of butter in the pan. Whisk in flour and continue to cook, stirring vigorously, until roux resembles a thick paste and is a light golden color (3 to 5 minutes). Add broth or other liquid, whisking thoroughly to smooth out the flour lumps. Increase heat to medium-high, add mushroom mixture back to the pan, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, until somewhat reduced (7 to 10 minutes). Stir in lemon juice and soy sauce. Taste and adjust seasonings if necessary.