********************Good gravy! It's Monday again already and that means it's time for The Magnificent Morgen's Manic Monday Word of the Day which is -- GRAVY! For those of you who might be wondering how on earth that became the word of the day allow me to quickly explain ... the other evening Morgen, Claire, and myself were playing a game of Scrabulous online and having a lovely Yahoo! Instant Messenger chat at the same time. Mo mentioned that he had yet to pick a word for Manic Monday and asked Claire and I if we had any suggestions. Well, with it being close to Thanksgiving and all, my mind immediately went to all of the good things about Thanksgiving and settled on gravy because you can't have turkey, mashed potatoes, and stuffing without having gravy. Gravy is the thing that ties it all together - much like friendship is the thing that ties life together. Hence, the word of the day is "gravy"! Makes sense, right?
I wasn't sure what direction I was going to go with "gravy" but while debating options I had an epiphany of sorts what with it also being Veterans Day this weekend and I was recalling some of my time in the military. I was in the Air Force and after my six weeks of Basic Training at Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio, Texas I was transferred to Keesler Air Force Base in Biloxi, Mississippi for eight months of electronics schooling. Keesler was known to have some of the best chow halls in the Air Force and had actually won quite a few awards. For the eight months that I was stationed there, I never once complained about the food as it was very good and very plentiful and if you couldn't find something you liked then you were way too picky and should never have joined the military to begin with!
One of my very favorite things to have for breakfast was ground hamburg in a white gravy sauce served over toast otherwise known as Sh*t on a Shingle. A lot of people get this particular delicacy confused with creamed chipped beef but true SOS is made with ground beef and I can't remember ever going to the chow hall and having them serve up SOS made with chipped beef. It just wouldn't have been the same.
Say what you want about it but it was stick-to-your-ribs food and was absolutely delicious. I liked to have mine put on my hash browns or even my scrambled eggs for a variation once in awhile and my mouth is watering just sitting here thinking about it now!
SOS was also one of my Dad's favorites and being a 20-year career man I can certainly see that happening! My Mom used to make creamed chip beef a lot when I was younger but it wasn't the same so I eventually found a recipe of sorts and learned to make true SOS myself. The few times I made it for my Dad, he gave it high points and said it tasted just as good as anything he'd ever eaten in a chow hall. My youngest brother who spent some time in the Army National Guard also gave it a big thumbs-up so I have military experts backing me on this!
I don't have an exact recipe written down as SOS is something you basically make for taste but I can give you the basics should you ever wish to try it yourself. Oh, and don't even think about the calories because they are plentiful but an Army can't run on carrots and celery sticks!
First off, get a pound of bacon and fry it up placing the bacon to the side and reserving the bacon fat; in the same skillet you just friend the bacon in, add enough flour to the bacon fat to make a nice gravy base along with salt and pepper for seasoning; add milk until you have a nice thick sauce; stir in one pound of already-cooked scrambled ground beef; and when it's good and hot serve over toast or potatoes. Yummy! Some people like to add Tabasco sauce or other condiments but I like just the basics. I'm going to have to make this again sometime soon now that I think about it!
Everyone have a great Monday and may all your gravy be good!