Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Southern Corn Gravy

This is an old southern comfort dish that brings back so many good memories of my Mother and my Grandmother. Of course I feel like I can never make it like they did. It’s always missing that touch that only they had. But this is the next best thing. No, this is not creamed corn! That is a totally different recipe. Not a diet food either, but I’ll tell you how to lighten the recipe in the cooks notes and how to take it vegan, if you like. It’s rich and creamy and the perfect dish for a hard day, when you need something warm and comforting. This is my go to when I need a foodie hug!

Southern Corn Gravy over Toast

1 stick unsalted butter
½ onion, diced
½ cup all purpose flour
1 ½ cups half and half cream
2 14 ½ ounce cans whole kernel corn or equivalent of frozen corn
Pinch or more of cayenne pepper
Salt and pepper to taste
White or wheat bread

Heat a skillet on medium high and add butter. When butter is melted and hot sauté onions until tender. Whisk in flour and make a rue, stirring constantly. Keep moving the rue to prevent burning and cook flour for 2 to 3 minutes. This will keep the gravy from tasting floury. Once your rue has cooked, slowly add all of the milk and whisk constantly working the mixture until smooth. Add corn and seasonings. Stir to combine thoroughly. Serve over bread or toast. Hugs from me to you!

1. Variations for: Bacon Cream Corn; start by frying 6 slices of diced bacon. Remove from skillet when crisp. Discard (or save) about half the bacon fat and add 2 tablespoons butter to the remaining rendered fat. Follow the directions above from this point and add bacon bits back to the corn gravy when done.

2. For Cheesy Corn Gravy, add bleu cheese, pepper jack (for a bit of a bite), cheddar or your favorite cheese. Follow directions above and when corn gravy is ready, stir in 1 teaspoon dried thyme, if desired and crumbled or shredded cheese to the skillet and allow to melt. Serve hot over toast or soft bread.

3. For Bacon Cheese Corn Gravy, combine steps 1. and 2. as well as basic directions. You can also add diced (jarred) jalapenos for an extra kick.

Cook’s Notes: To go vegan or vegetarian, use Mazola or vegetable based butter and replace cream with soy or rice milk instead. For a lighter version, use fat free or 2% milk instead of cream (or a blend of ½ 2% or fat free and ½ water) and a good low fat margarine. I can’t tell you how confusing the information is on low fat and low cholesterol margarines. I can only recommend you read all labels carefully to get the product that is best for you.