The Bible itself says that man shall not live by bread alone.
While that may be taken slightly out of context, it also has dietary truth to it. Man can’t live on just the bare, bland alliterative bread out there. Or rather, men don’t want to.
Going back to the Bible, don’t forget that God gave the Israelites special bread directly from heaven and they decided they STILL wanted some meat with it.
Thus, man began to spread things onto food to make it better. A turkey sandwich? MUSTARD IT. A hamburger? KETCHUP IT.
But man doesn’t stop there. No, man NEVER “stops there”.
Man invented the art of The Topping.
And though chocolate and fancy syrups are common toppings, it’s not limited to just dessert foods. You frequently find salsa and queso at your everyday Mexican restaurant.
But the most beautiful of them all is gravy.
Gravy is genius, because it is basically just liquid meat. That sounds disgusting, but it’s totally not. It’s more like a big nasty broth.
Gravy doesn’t seem like anything special, sure. It’s nothing more than the juices that naturally run from meat (or veggies, but that’s lame) during cooking. But it has a very special charm to it.
For starters, it’s common scientific knowledge that the best foods in the world are the ones that will kill you. That’s why hamburgers that weigh a full pound actually exist in this world.
Wait, what’s that? You want to create a doughnut burger? Sounds like a fantastic idea!
But there is something about putting gravy on something that takes it beyond the threshold of delicious but painful and into the realm of the Awesome Yet Life Threatening (AYLT).
For example: Beer battered french fries? Delicious, but painful.
Beer battered french fries COVERED IN GRAVY? Straight AYLT.
The more your heart screams in pain, the better the food item is.
And gravy has a storied history. Nobody is quite sure exactly where it came from, as the act of cooking meat in its own juices has been around since the beginning of time. In fact, apparently it is sometimes believed that gravy is depicted in Egyptian hieroglyphics.
The French really pioneered the usage of gravy as a fine substance. They invented the sauce boat (sometimes referred to as just the gravy boat), and the English word “gravy” is probably tied to the Old French word “grane.”
Why is any of that important? Because it shows us that gravy transcends time.
And by transcending time, gravy has even entered into the vernacular. The phrase “riding the gravy train” is actually a real thing. It means that one has had an easy life. And who doesn’t want that?
“It’s all gravy, baby,” means that it’s all good, and smooth, and probably delicious. But at the very least, it’s all good!
Even slang phrases prove that gravy is good.
As a bit of a side note, one of the best Pink Floyd songs, Have A Cigar, is all about riding the gravy train. So even though listening to Pink Floyd is sometimes about as fun as being kicked in the shins, this expression was still pretty prevalent in the 1970s. And also probably super British.
So the next time you’re looking for the right thing to really push your meal over the top, Stallone-style, then consider gravy. It promises to be AYLT, to transcend time, and to give you an easy life.
And probably also make you super British.
Today’s post is inspired by my lil sister who isn’t actually related to me, Mary Palmer, who dared me to write a post entirely about gravy. And it’s pretty clear I knocked it out of the park.
Hey Mary Palmer, do you like gravy? Well how you like THEM gravies?
What do you put gravy on? I wasn’t kidding about the battered fries.