I missed gravy when I was a vegetarian, especially at Thanksgiving when my mashed potatoes cried out for it. Making vegetarian – even vegan - gravy isn’t hard. All it requires is a decent vegetable stock (made in half an hour) some caramelized onions and a roux. This can be made a day or two ahead, and reheated for serving.

Vegetarian Gravy

For the stock:

    Chop up any of the following that you have in the house – an onion, two carrots, two sticks of celery, a leek. Put a Tbs. or so of oil into a heated pot, and add the chopped vegetables; sauté until tender. Pour in two quarts of water, throw in a bay leaf if you have one around, a large pinch of salt and several gratings of pepper. Bring to a simmer and let it bubble for a half hour (more if you like), until reduced and flavorful. Strain out the vegetables and discard before continuing with the recipe. You may use extra stock for stuffing.

  1. 3 Tbs. butter or oil

  2. 3 Tbs. flour

  3. 1 medium onion, chopped

  4. 1 clove garlic, chopped

  5. 1 tsp. sage

  6. 1 tsp. fresh thyme or ½ tsp. dried

  7. 2 1/2 cups vegetable stock

  8. salt and pepper to taste

    In a medium (heavy enamel is good) pot, melt the butter or heat the oil. Add the onions and garlic and sauté until soft (don’t brown). Add the herbs. Sprinkle in the flour and cook, stirring often, for about 10 minutes, until the roux is dark golden brown. Gradually pour in the vegetable stock, whisking briskly to keep the mixture from developing lumps. Bring the mixture to a simmer, whisking constantly, and allow to simmer a few minutes until thick. Add salt and pepper to taste, then strain the mixture, discarding the onions and garlic. Makes about 2 cups.