To darken gravy
Cook the skinned drippings in the pan over medium-low heat for 2 to 3 minutes before adding liquid. You can also add browning liquid (available in most grocery stores). Or, roast some carrots, onions, and celery in the pan in which the meat is roasting. Add the vegetables 1 hour before the meat is scheduled to be done. Remove and serve the vegetables. They will leave behind rich, brown, crusty bits in the pan that will boost the color and flavor of gravy made from pan drippings.
To thicken gravy
First, try cooking it down over medium heat to evaporate excess liquid. Or, if you don't want to reduce the volume, thicken the gravy with cornstarch, flour, or arrowroot. Use 1.5 tablespoons flour for each cup of liquid. If you're using cornstarch or arrowroot, dissolve 2 teaspoons cornstarch or arrowroot in 1 tablespoon cold water (and 2 tablespoons dry white wine, if desired). Stir into 1 cup of hot broth at the end of cooking time, and cook until thickened, 30 seconds to 1 minute, stirring constantly. Then, cook 1 minute more. These proportions will make about 1 cup of medium-thick gravy.
To minimize lumps when thickening gravy
Dissolve the thickener in a small amount of cold water before adding to the gravy.
To remove lumps from gravy
Beat vigorously with whisk. Or pour the gravy through a mesh sieve, pressing out the lumps. You can also dip an immersion blender into the gravy to make it smooth, or run the gravy through a food processor.
** Asian Recipes