Thanksgiving is absolutely my favorite holiday, so I had a great time yesterday and Tuesday getting ready for the big feast. Not so big, actually, since it was just Dan and me this year. But it was great 🙂
I’ve had this fear of making turkey gravy for several years, but now – yay! – I’m over it. I think one year, I didn’t cook the flour-fat (roux) mixture enough, because the gravy tasted floury, and after that, I convinced myself I was no good at sauces. So my mom came for Thanksgiving several years in a row and I told her the gravy was her job 😉 But she and Leo have gone south on the Intracoastal Waterway already this year, so I had to do it myself.
Luckily, earlier this week, I got an email from America’s Test Kitchen for make-ahead gravy, from a Cook’s Country magazine recipe. It called for roasting turkey wings (I couldn’t find them, so I used necks) with chopped carrots, celery, onions and garlic and using the roasted veggies to make stock for the gravy.
Oh. My. God. It was so good, I went back today and bought more necks so I can make more stock. It was so good, I’m going to make soup tomorrow with the next batch. Yum.
Make-Ahead Turkey Gravy
Makes about 2 quarts
6 turkey drumsticks, thighs, or wings
reserved turkey giblets
reserved turkey neck
2 carrots, chopped coarse
1 head garlic, halved
2 ribs celery, chopped coarse
2 onions, chopped coarse
Vegetable oil spray
10 cups low-sodium chicken broth
2 cups dry white wine
12 sprigs fresh thyme
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
Table salt and ground black pepper
Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 450 degrees. Place giblets, neck, drumsticks, carrots, celery, onions, and garlic in roasting pan, spray with vegetable oil, and toss well. Roast, stirring occasionally, until well browned, 1 to 1 1/2 hours. (I set my oven to 400 and checked after 1 hour; I think 1 hour and 20 minutes would be enough).
Transfer contents of roasting pan to Dutch oven. Add broth, wine, and thyme and bring to boil over high heat. Reduce heat to low and simmer until reduced by half, about 1 1/2 hours. Pour through fine-mesh strainer into large container (discard solids), cover stock with plastic wrap, and refrigerate until fat congeals, at least 2 hours.
Using soup spoon, skim fat and reserve. Heat 1/2 cup fat in Dutch oven over medium-high heat until bubbling. Whisk in flour and cook, whisking constantly, until honey colored, about 2 minutes. Gradually whisk in stock, bring to boil, reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer until slightly thickened, about 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. (Gravy can be refrigerated for up to 3 days or frozen for up to 2 months.) Reheat gravy in saucepan over medium heat until bubbling.