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Make Ahead Turkey Gravy

d
Diane in Bexley Nov 21, 2008 11:12 AM

Thinking of trying this Woman's Day recipe, anyone have experience with this? Would be helpful to do this weekend and freeze, doctor up with some fresh turkey pan juices, perhaps some apple cider or maple syrup. Comments?

http://www.womansday.com/Recipes/Make...

  1. b
    breadchick Nov 20, 2011 05:00 PM

    I have relied on this make ahead gravy since it was printed in the NY Times. It's a tradition in my kitchen the weekend before Thanksgiving. I get a little turkey fix, a few glasses of champagne, and one less headache on the big day. I actually save the meat from the turkey and make pulled turkey so it won't go to waste (I use mostly turkey thighs - so it makes sense.)

    http://www.nytimes.com/2008/11/19/din...

    My husband now considers this a must-have, so he looks forward to gravy weekend.

    1 Reply
    1. re: breadchick
      MrsCheese Nov 20, 2011 07:26 PM

      I make this every year and it's *perfect*. Just put mine in the freezer this weekend.
      I've started doing it with a 10-11 lb Butterball. Roast the turkey like normal, remove the breast meat once it's cooked to freeze for leftovers (or eat hot browns like we did tonight) and use the legs, wings, carcass to make the stock and go from there. It's awesome. I have at least 2 qts of gravy ready to go.

    2. The Librarian Nov 20, 2011 02:25 PM

      I've been using the Woman's Day recipe since I read it in my doctor's office in 2004. Here it is:

      http://www.womansday.com/Recipes/Make...

      The changes I make are:

      *use 6 turkey wings instead of 4
      * salt and pepper wings before roasting them
      *use broth made using Better Than Bouillon turkey base instead of chicken broth to cook the wings in after I've roasted them
      * use all 8 cups of broth to cook the wings in instead of reserving 2 cups for later
      * make a roux with 3/4 C. flour and 3/4 C. butter and whisk the hot broth into that and boil until thickened
      * call upon my late expert gravy maker FIL for guidance - feel free to do this - his name was Rich

      However, what I've learned from CH is that I can make the gravy today and freeze it until Thursday. I'm doing that, and now have one less thing to do at the last minute. Yay!

      2 Replies
      1. re: The Librarian
        a
        amyatkendall Nov 20, 2011 02:30 PM

        Just out of curiosity, does it need to be frozen? I read on Serious Eats that it can just be kept in the fridge until Thursday and then heated up.

        I like your changes, BTW. I'm going to make note of them for next year. This was my first year making gravy ever and I'm pretty pleased with the results.

        (also a librarian) :)

        1. re: amyatkendall
          The Librarian Nov 20, 2011 03:06 PM

          I don't know about the freezing. I tend to be a little paranoid about storing stuff, so I'm playing it safe by freezing it. What do others think?
          I just remembered two other changes I made. I use two roasting pans for the wings and rotate them in the oven halfway through the cooking time. I also use one cup white wine to deglaze the roasting pans after roasting the wings. I just couldn't use plain water!

          Always happy to help out a fellow librarian!

      2. a
        amyatkendall Nov 20, 2011 01:09 PM

        I made my gravy yesterday - this is the recipe I used:
        4 smoked turkey wings (about 3 lb)
        2 medium onions -- peeled and quartered
        1 cup water
        8 cups chicken broth
        3/4 cup chopped carrot
        1/2 tsp dried thyme
        3/4 cup all-purpose flour
        2 Tbsp stick butter or margarine
        1/2 tsp freshly ground pepper

        1. Heat oven to 400°F. Have ready a large roasting pan.
        2. Arrange wings in a single layer in pan; scatter onions over top. Roast 1 1/4 hours until wings are browned.
        3. Put wings and onions in a 5- to 6-qt pot. Add water to roasting pan and stir to scrape up any brown bits on bottom. Add to pot. Add 6 cups broth (refrigerate remaining 2 cups), the carrot and thyme. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, 1 1/2 hours.
        4. Remove wings to cutting board. When cool, pull off skin and meat. Discard skin; save meat for another use.
        5. Strain broth into a 3-qt saucepan, pressing vegetables to extract as much liquid as possible. Discard vegetables; skim fat off broth and discard (if time permits, refrigerate broth overnight to make fat-skimming easier).
        6. Whisk flour into remaining 2 cups broth until blended and smooth.
        7. Bring broth in pot to a gentle boil. Whisk in broth-flour mixture and boil 3 to 4 minutes to thicken gravy and remove floury taste. Stir in butter and pepper. Serve, or pour into containers and refrigerate up to 1 week or freeze up to 6 months.

        Makes: 8 cups
        Make up to 3 months ahead and freeze in an airtight container. Refrigerate 2 days to thaw. Reheat in a saucepan, whisking often.

        1 Reply
        1. re: amyatkendall
          monavano Nov 20, 2011 01:22 PM

          I do kinda wish I had smoked turkey around when I made it today. That would have been yum.

        2. todao Nov 20, 2011 12:54 PM

          Your link doesn't connect to a specific recipe so it's not possible to evaluate it using that connection.
          But using their search feature (with "make ahead turkey gravy") I came up with a generic recipe that uses onions, water, chicken broth, chopped carrot, thyme, AP flour, butter and pepper.
          Is that the one you're looking at?

          1. monavano Nov 20, 2011 12:49 PM

            OK, made my gravy today!
            i used turkey necks and they worked great. I loosely followed Tyler Florence's recipe.
            I browned the necks, added onions, garlic, carrot and celery and fresh herbs-- thyme and sage. I stuck in in a 400 degree oven for 30 minutes and then brought it over to the stovetop. I removed the necks and herbs and made a roux and deglazed with dry white wine. Added chicken stock and here's where I really diverged: i simmered on the stovetop for about 30 minutes to really extract flavor. I also threw in more fresh herbs with sage (loose) and a bundle of thyme and tarragon.
            I blended the sage, gravy and veggies in my Vitamix and finished with a squeeze of lemon juice.
            Once the turkey is finished, I'll defat the dripping and add them into the gravy.
            It's great to knock this off the list!

            1. JoanN Nov 21, 2008 11:31 AM

              Here's one report on it from a couple of years back.

              http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/4591...

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