The real southern milk gravy traditionally served with biscuits is plain. It used to be called sawmill gravy. I don't remember why. Darned Yankees added sausage and stuff! Of course, it was originally made with bacon grease that you could always find in a container on the counter.
I can still picture my grandmother making it...
She would fry up a package of bacon. Then, drain off most of the grease into the bacon grease container, keeping about a 1/4 cup in the pan.
Then you would take a tablespoon and throw in a couple spoons of flour, stirring it until it was smooth. Then you would pour in a couple cups of milk and turn the heat back on. You would stand there and stir it until it got thick enough. If you didn't, it would get lumpy quick.
It was so good! As a teen, I could eat 10 biscuits myself.
How times have changed... But it still tastes great, doesn't it?
I still prefer the basic milk gravy, but it would be better with bacon grease. The sausage version is also included here for you if you don't have to watch your cholesterol.
Basic Milk Gravy
1/4 cup butter
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 cups milk (2% or whole)
Fresh ground black pepper to taste
Hot biscuits, for serving
Heat a large skillet over medium heat.
Melt the butter.
Add the flour and cook until dissolved, about 1 minute.
Stir in the milk. Cook, whisking frequently, until the gravy is very thick and bubbly (you can add more milk later if you need to thin).
Season generously with salt and lots of freshly ground black pepper.
Serve with hot biscuits split open.
Now, many people will make sausage gravy. The standard recipe is to crumble and brown your sausage, Like you are cooking ground beef.
Stir in the flour until completely mixed in.
Add the milk. Cook and stir until gravy is thickened.
Add salt and pepper to taste.
Or, you can brown the sausage in a separate pan and drain off the fat, and add it to the gravy above. This would be my choice. A little healthier.