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Nov 25, 2013 06:43 PM

Possible for very rich stock to over thicken a gravy?

I just made a stock that is literally like jello in the fridge. Before cooling it was of course very thin. I'm concerned that if I follow the amount of starch thickener I might get too thick of a gravy once it cools just a little bit. Is that possible? Should I cut back on thickener a tad or keep it the same? Thanks!

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  1. You want to use as little thickener as possible, so start with less than you might and you can always add in a slurry. A nice thick jellied stock is a wonderful thing.

    1. No, the gelatin in your stock will have no impact on the thickening level of the hot gravy. It WILL give it a more unctuous mouth-feel (a good thing, IMO) and you should taste the finished gravy before adding any salt, as the stock may be overly salty. You can use the regular amount of thickening.

      3 Replies
      1. re: greygarious

        greygarious is right, that just means your stock is full of gelatin, which means FLAVOR, so its a good thing. It shouldn't really affect the thickness of your gravy when warm, but it will help make it delicious.

        1. re: ePressureCooker

          Gelatin is flavorless. It's the same stuff whether it is made from fish bones, cow hooves, pig ears or duck feet. It aids in texture and mouthfeel only. It's the reason Knox can simply remove the impurities such as salt and sell unflavored gelatin (that is, without *added* flavors) and why it lends itself equally well to aspic and Strawberry Jell-O.

          It can only help your gravy, texture-wise, but will have no impact on flavor by itself. However, your stock may have more intense flavor because of how much it has been reduced, but this could still be true if it had been made of all meat and no bones (technically not a stock but a broth) and therefore would have very little gelatin and wouldn't be solid, but could still be very intensely flavored. I've had stocks that were as solid as ballistic gel (that is, very nearly bricklike) when cold but had no flavor, and had some that refused to solidify at all but were mind-blowingly intense.

          Flavor and gelatin -- not related. Bottom line, taste the stock when hot and if it tastes fine, just follow your recipe.

        2. re: greygarious

          The gelatin is liquid at hot gravy temperature so should be just fine. In fact last night I plopped some stock in a mug, heated it in the microwave and drank it like tea.

          1. No.
            What Grey said above.

            Your stock is only "thick" when very cold.

            1. Even with no starch whatsoever your gravy is going to thicken considerably when it cools. But that is what microwaves were designed to help with.