Paprika gravy

Yield: 7 servings

Measure Ingredient
1 tablespoon Lard, freshly rendered or oil
1½ tablespoon Hungarian paprika, or more to taste
1 \N Garlic clove, peeled, chopped
1 cup Anaheim green peppers, seeded, chopped or:
1 cup Cubanelle peppers, chopped
1 cup Yellow onion, peeled, chopped
½ cup Tomatoes, ripe, chopped
1 teaspoon Chicken base, knorr prefered or chick bouillon
6 cups Beef stock
\N \N Salt to taste
\N \N Pepper to taste
1 cup Sour cream
¾ cup Flour, all-purpose

Heat a 5 qt heavy stove-top casserole and add the lard and paprika. Cook over medium heat for a moment and then add the garlic, green pepper, onion, and tomatoes. Simmer for a few minutes until all is tender. Add the chicken base and Beef Stock, along with the salt and pepper. Cover and simmer for 30 minutes.

In a metal bowl, mix the sour cream and flour together. Mix it well with a wire whip as you do not want lumps. Add a cup of the gravy from the pot and quickly stir into the cream and flour with the whisk.

Remove the gravy from the heat and stir in the cream mixture, whipping it well. Return to the heat and simmer, stirring often, for 15 minutes. Strain the gravy and discard the solids ... or lumps, if you have any. Yields: 7 cups Hint: To render lard.

Yes, I know this is heresay in our time, but if you want the real flavor of Grandma's cooking you must render your own lard. Lard purchased from the market is not as flavorful.

Tell your butcher you want fresh pork fatback, coarsely chopped, for rendering. Get 2 or 3 pounds. Place in a heavy kettle and add 1 cup of water. Set over medium heat until all is boiling and then reduce heat to medium low. Cook until the pork fat pieces have shrunk to small toasty bits and the fat is clear yellow, about 2 hours.

Allow the fat to cool and store it in glass jars in the refrigerator.

Hint: On the use of lard.

I have very mixed feelings about fooling around with Grandma's recipes. Where she used lard, you and I should certainly feel free to substitute some other kind of oil... but we must admit that the final flavor will not be the same. Perhaps we should have it just once in a while. Recipe & Hints Source: The Frugal Gourmet On Our Immigrant Ancestors: Recipes you should have gotten from your grandmother, Jeff Smith, ISBN 0-688-07590-8

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