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Get-ahead Gravy

Get-ahead Gravy

Brought to you by: OcadoLife

Prep time:

Cook time:

Serves: 8

Serve this Get-ahead Gravy from food writer and editor Helen Graves at your next Sunday lunch, and everyone will be licking their plate clean! Excellent stock is the key to excellent gravy, so this recipe starts with just that, using chicken wings – and giblets from your bird if you have them – for maximum meaty flavour. It makes more stock than you’ll need, so freeze the leftovers for another day or dish. Helen’s top tip? “You need time and patience for a really great gravy: the trick is to make it ahead.” Looking for more roast dinner side dishes or still need Sunday lunch inspiration? Look no further.
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  • 2 whole garlic bulbs
  • 4 carrots (2 for the wings, 2 for the stock), roughly chopped
  • 2 onions (1 for the wings, 1 for the stock), roughly chopped
  • 3 celery sticks (2 for the wings, 1 for the stock), roughly chopped
  • 1 kg chicken wings
  • 1 bouquet garni (ready-to-use, or make your own from 1 thyme sprig, 2 bay leaves and a handful of parsley stalks, tied with string)
  • 5 whole black peppercorns
  • 100ml white wine
  • 3 tbsp plain flour
  • 4 cooked peeled chestnuts (optional)
  • 1 tsp dijon mustard
  • 1 tbsp Marmite
  • 1 tsp cornflour


Step 1

Preheat the oven to 180°C/160°C fan/gas 4. Place the garlic, carrot, onion and celery for the wings in a large roasting tin. Put the wings (and giblets, if available) on top. Roast for 30 mins. Remove the garlic and set aside. Return the wings to the oven for 1 hr.

Step 2

Put the wings into a large pan; reserve and cover the veg in its tin.

Step 3

Add the uncooked veg to the pan with the bouquet garni, peppercorns and 2L cold water; bring to the boil. Reduce to a simmer for 3 hrs; skim off any scum. Strain through a sieve into a jug. Pour 700ml into a clean pan and reheat. (Freeze the leftover stock.)

Step 4

Put the roasted veg tin on the hob over a medium-high heat; add the wine and deglaze for 2-3 mins, scraping up any sticky bits with a wooden spoon.

Step 5

Add the flour; whisk to dissolve any lumps. Use the wooden spoon to mash in the chestnuts, cooked garlic cloves, mustard and Marmite. Gradually whisk in the hot stock; bubble for a few mins. Mix the cornflour with a splash of water; stir in gradually to thicken; season. Strain through a sieve; cool then chill covered for 2-3 days; or make up to 1 month ahead and freeze; defrost for 2 days in the fridge. When ready, reheat, adding any roasting juices; season and serve.

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