The first time I ever tasted biscuits and gravy was at a Piggly Wiggly grocery store near Darien, Georgia (population: 1,700). I was about 13 years old, and I had been enjoying a family vacation with the company of my friend, Lauren. She was less than impressed by my family’s style of vacation; we dragged her through one historical-building-turned-museum after another and stuffed our faces with fudge. (What is it with tourist spots and fudge?) She just wanted to lay out by the warm, sandy water of the Gulf of Mexico that were used to, but all we had was a muddy stretch of the Atlantic. The next stop in our trip was St. Augustine, Florida (one of the coolest places I’ve ever visited), but we sought out breakfast before we hit the road.
I’m fairly certain I suggested we find a McDonald’s so we could eat breakfast on the road, but we couldn’t find one, which is how we ended up at a Piggly Wiggly with a breakfast bar. The thought of eating food at a grocery store breakfast bar made me feel uncomfortable, so I’m sure I just ordered a large sweet tea and watched hungrily as my family and friend gobbled up lukewarm pancakes, rubbery eggs, and chewy bacon. Lauren had also helped herself to a heaping plate of biscuits and gravy, which horrified me. I can handle biscuits, but the weird, cream-colored, lumpy gravy? It made me shutter. She told me I was stupid and shoved a plastic fork in front of me, encouraging me to try it.
I learned a lot during that vacation, albiet mostly about the Civil War and the Rockefellars. But, I also learned this:
- Piggly Wiggly serves the best iced tea (which actually may have just been sugar-water, now that I think about it).
- Biscuits and gravy is the best breakfast food, and no place has ever served it better than Piggly Wiggly. Not even Waffle House.
When I started reading No Ghouls Allowed by Victoria Laurie, which takes place in Valdosta, Ga, I couldn’t help but remember my first helping of buttery biscuits and creamy, herbaceous sausage gravy. I also couldn’t help day dreaming about fluffy, sweet cinnamon rolls, which is what Gilley’s mom actually cooks the Ghould Getters for breakfast, but pastries are such a pain to make. It was an easy decision to make– Biscuits and Gravy for the Ghoul Getters!
Homemade Sausage Gravy
This made three, hearty plates, so you can double the recipe if you have more mouths to feed
- 1/2 pound of sausage (not in casings)
- 2 tbsp + 1tsp of flour
- 2 cups of whole milk
- Pepper, Salt, Nutmeg, Sage, Thyme to taste
- Fried egg and fresh chives for garnish (optional, but highly recommended)
- Tear off small pieces of sausage with your fingers and add them to your pan. Set the stove to medium heat, and cook the sausage until there is no more pink. I also took this time to chop up my pieces of sausage to a smaller size.
- Turn the heat down to medium-low, and add the flour in increments, allowing the sausage to soak it up.
- Pour in the milk, stirring constantly until the gravy starts to thicken. This can take a while. I was able to pre-heat my oven and bake my biscuits (store-brand Homestyle, Flaky Jumbo! Biscuits) by the time my gravy started to thicken, which was maybe 15 minutes? If your gravy ends up being too thick, you can add more milk.
- Add your seasonings. I don’t have official measurements for this– just Jackie measurements, which are: two cracks of salt, a boatload amount of cracks of pepper, a pinch of dried nutmeg, two pinches of dried thyme, and two pinches of dried sage. See what I mean?
- Scoop a generous amount of sausage gravy over the biscuits, top with a fried egg and fresh chopped chives.
- Tell your family to make their own plates because this is too darn delicious to wait any longer.
I know in my Granola Bars for La Peligrosa, I alluded to the idea that I was trying to eat healthier, and truly I am. But…biscuits and gravy man! Have you ever tried them before? What is your favorite breakfast food?