Make our no-waste gravy using overripe tomatoes, mushrooms, herb stalks, leek tops and celery leaves to give it added flavour
- Serves: 8 persons
- 3tbsp sunflower oil
- 1reserved chicken backbone (see recipe, below), chopped or snapped into pieces
- carrot trimmings and peels (see recipe, below), finely chopped
- ½large onion, plus the whole skin
- 1tsp caster sugar
- 3tbsp plain flour
- 1tbsp soy sauce (optional)
- 100ml wine port or sherry (or use water)
- 2chicken or beef stock cubes or pots
Step 1Heat the oil in a wide, shallow pan over a medium heat and spend at least 10 mins browning the chicken backbone pieces – the darker the colour, the more flavourful the gravy will be. Add the carrot trimmings, onion and onion skins, and cook for 3-4 mins over a high heat until well browned. Scatter over the sugar and cook until it starts to caramelise, then tip in the flour and cook to a sticky, light brown paste.
Step 2Splash in the soy sauce, if using, then pour in the wine or water and simmer for a few minutes until reduced and thickened. Stir in 1 litre water from the kettle, add the stock cubes and bring to a simmer. Cook gently for 40 mins, then sieve into another saucepan and season to taste. Stir in any resting juices from the chicken. Reheat when ready to serve. Can be made a day ahead and chilled, then reheated the next day.