Cook the Book: Perfect Turkey Gravy

Throw away your powdered gravy mix, Martha Stewart says—there's no alchemy to turkey gravy. Almost everything you need to make a great gravy comes from the turkey itself: the meat juices and the crusty brown bits in the roasting pan.

In this week's Cook the Book selection, Martha Stewart's Cooking School, you'll learn to base a foolproof gravy around a simple stock from the turkey's neck and giblets, easily made while the bird is in the oven. Fragrant with aromatic vegetables, it will stretch the pan juices and enrich the flavor of your gravy.

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Cook the Book: Perfect Turkey Gravy

About This Recipe

Yield:about 4 cups

Ingredients

  • For the stock:
  • Reserved giblets and neck from turkey
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 celery stalks, coarslely chopped
  • 1 medium carrot, coarsely chopped
  • 1 leek, white and pale-green parts only, coarsely chopped and well washed
  • 1 medium onion, peeled and coarsely chopped
  • 3 sprigs thyme
  • 3 sprigs flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 sprig rosemary
  • 1 fresh or dried bay leaf
  • 5 whole black peppercorns
  • 1 quart water
  • For the gravy:
  • 3 tablespoons pan drippings, reserved from turkey
  • 3/4 cup dry white wine
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper

Procedures

  1. 1

    Make stock:

  2. 2

    Trim fat and membranes from giblets, then rinse giblets and pat dry.

  3. 3

    Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Cook celery, carrot, leek, and onion, stirring fairly often, until they begin to brown, 7 to 10 minutes. Reduce heat to medium.

  4. 4

    Add giblets, neck, herbs, peppercorns, and the water. Cover and bring to boil, then reduce heat to medium-low. Cook, uncovered, until reduced to about 3 cups, 50 to 60 minutes.

  5. 5

    Pour mixture through a fine sieve into a clean medium saucepan and keep warm over medium-low heat.

  6. 6

    Roughly chop giblets and shred meat from neck with a fork (discard other solids).

  7. 7

    Deglaze roasting pan:

  8. 8

    Place reserved roasting pan over two burners. Add wine and bring to a boil, stirring with a wooden spoon to loosen any browned bits on bottom of pan. Remove from heat.

  9. 9

    Make gravy:

  10. 10

    Heat reserved 3 tablespoons pan drippings in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the flour, whisking briskly to combine, then continue whisking, cooking until mixture is fragrant and deep golden brown, about 9 minutes.

  11. 11

    Whisking vigorously, slowly add hot stock and bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a gentle simmer.

  12. 12

    Stir in reserved deglazing liquid, pan drippings, and giblets and neck meat. Season with salt and pepper. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until the gravy has thickened to the consistency of heavy cream, about 20 minutes.

  13. 13

    Strain through a fine sieve into a saucepan (discard solids) and keep warm over low heat. Season with more salt and pepper just before serving.

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