"There should always be a supply of brown flour kept in readiness to thicken brown gravies," Mary Randolph wrote in her 1824 cookbook, The Virginia House-Wife.

Indeed, this simple ingredient is one to have on hand in modern kitchens as well. This flour adds a nuttiness and depth to a variety of red-meat-based sauces. Use it to thicken these sauces as you would all-purpose flour.


  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • Directions

    1. Put the flour in a skillet (preferably cast iron) over medium-high heat. Stir continuously until the flour is a dark golden brown. Watch carefully, as it burns easily.

    2. Remove from the heat, and immediately transfer to a bowl to stop it from browning. Cool to room temperature, and store in an airtight glass jar in a cool, dry cupboard.

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