Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Do you put sugar in your gravy?

I've been making gravy since I was old enough to reach the stove. Flour or cornstarch, milk or water, drippings, and a whole bunch of different spices depending on the type. It has never crossed my mind to add a touch of sugar to country gravy, brown gravy, or any other kind of gravy. Even before I kicked the habit.

What about you? Do you toss a quarter teaspoon or more of sugar into your chicken or turkey gravy?

Well, Shawnee Mills Peppered Country Gravy does. It's the gravy that is packaged with Fast Classics Chicken Fried Chicken Breasts. They're one of my husband's favorites. He likes sugar, meat, and pretty much anything that is considered 'normal' eating these days.

I sneak in healthy stuff wherever I can but am not a nagger. I really try to avoid buying processed foods for him as much as possible, too.

I started looking at the package for the gravy as I was whisking it up this evening. I expected to find the usual chemicals, but was not expecting to find "corn syrup solids", "dextrose", AND "sugar" listed in the ingredients. The serving size was 2 tablespoons. Yep,  2 li'l ol' tablespoons. There are 5g carbs per serving and... ta da... NO sugar. No fiber. It would be real interesting to find out how many sugars there are in a real serving like most of us dole out.

Then, I just had to pull out the package of chicken and look at the ingredients. It's amazing how much stuff there is in one of those pieces. Yep, they included sugar in the mix. It's way down near the bottom, under the "less than 2%" heading but it's there.

I know they put these things together and taste test. They add this, add that, play until they come up with something that testers can't resist. I wonder if that little dab of sugar is what tips the scales from "that's good" to "Wow, love it"? Or do they just stick sugar in stuff now because it's that addictive? I haven't got a clue. I can just speculate.

I think our taste buds have adjusted to all the super sweet things we eat. Adjusted so much that things don't taste right without a little bit of sugar in them. I don't think that these food producers are sitting around in a big room, gleefully rubbing their hands, thinking of ways to addict the masses to sugar. The end result may be the same!

Bottom line is that I won't be buying Fast Classics Chicken Fried Chicken Breasts anymore. Darn.

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