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This Ain’t No Gravy, Part I

I am from Canada but I’ve been in the South for a while.  And even though my mother-in-law might disagree, I do consider myself a bit of a Southerner.  HOWEVER….. I still don’t make “gravy.”  

At the Payne-Corley House we do like to brag that we don’t offer your typical banquet food.  That’s because we do it right.   We believe in the integrity of our product and not taking short-cuts.  For example, the process for making stock, the base of all our sauces is completed over 3 days and takea total of at least 30 hours.   Here is the journey:

Day I: 

First, we roast the veal bones until golden brown.  Typically, we roast about 50 pounds of bones at a time.   This takes about 1-2 hours. 

Next, we enhance the flavor of the bones by adding aromatics (garlic, black peppercorns, thyme) roatsed mirepoix and liquid. 

The mirepoix (carrotts, celery onions) ….I’ve already roasted these separately for 30-45 minutes. 

Simmer together for 8 -14 hours (depending on the size of the bones).

The boiling process requires constant attention as we continually skim off the foam and fat.

Day 2:

Boil the liquid to reduce by half.  This takes about 5 hours. 

 At the same time, we do an “2nd run” with the bones and mirepoix for another 8 -14 hours.  This is the remiage.

Day 3:

We combine the 1st and 2nd run and reduce this by half.  This takes another 5-7 hours.  Now we have our Demi-Glace.  We rapidly chill to preserve the integrity of the sauce.

The end result of the 3 day process is about 3 to 4 gallons of demi.   With all the reduction, the chilled liquid becomes ” Veal Jello” (Below is considered  a bar of gold in the culinary world) giving us the base for our sauces.

Keep in mind, this is JUST STOCK, the foundation of our infamous Madeira Jus and other sauces.  Making the actual sauce is another process all together.  We’ll share that labor of love another day.

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