Make-Ahead Turkey Gravy

50 m
4 h 0 m
Ready in:
4 h 50 m
This delicious turkey gravy recipe is essential to your holiday menu!
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Servings: 15
Bone-in turkey parts mix (breast, thighs, legs, wings)
2 to 4 lb
to taste
Fresh ground black pepper
to taste
White wine
½ cup
Large onion, peeled, roughly chopped 
Plump carrots, washed, unpeeled, roughly chopped 
4 stalks, washed, roughly chopped
1 tbsp
Bay leaf 
Fresh thyme
Fresh parsley
Unsalted butter
to taste
All-purpose flour
¼ cup
  1. Pre-heat the oven to 400°F/200°C/Gas Mark 6.
  2. Dry the turkey bits with a paper towel. Place them into a roasting pan, generously season with salt and pepper. Roast for an hour and a half or until well cooked through.
  3. Set the roasting pan with turkey aside to cool slightly to handle. Shred some meat off the bones. The more you shred, the poorer will your gravy be, BUT there is no need in leaving all the meat on the bones. Remove the amount you’d like to use for eating (a little more than a half will be fine).
  4. Deglaze the roasting pan: over medium-high heat, bring the turkey fat to sizzle, add ½ cup white wine in spoonfuls and stir constantly to break any bits of juice that cling to the bottom. When you have removed all that was sticking to the sides and bottom of the pan and there is only liquid inside, remove from heat and pour into a heat-proof bowl or jar. Refrigerate.
  5. Add turkey bones with meat on to a large pot (4-quart or more). Add chopped onion, unpeeled chopped carrots and celery, peppercorns, bay leaf and fresh herbs, if desired. Fill the pot up to the brim with water. Bring to a full boil, reduce heat to let the broth simmer. Cover with a lid, but let a vapor outlet. Simmer for as long as you can stay at home to watch it from time to time. Don’t worry if you can’t do this for too long – an hour’s simmer will already yield a wonderful gravy. However, several hours will be best. Make sure, though, that the liquid doesn’t cook down too much – check the pot frequently.
  6. Turn off the heat. Transfer the broth into a bowl using a fine sieve. Press the meat and bones with a spoon to let them release all the liquid. You should get 6+ cups of broth.  Refrigerate or start cooking gravy immediately.
  7. If you are using refrigerated broth, remove the chilled fat from the top of the broth. Don’t discard just yet – set the fat aside in a small bowl. Ladle 5 cups of broth into another bowl.
  8. In a saucepan, heat ¼ cup of fat. You can use roasting drippings, the fat you scraped off the broth, or just unsalted butter.
  9. When the fat foams, add flour. Cook stirring over medium-low heat until pale brown.  
  10. Whisk in ½ cup of broth until there are no lumps. Add the remaining 4 ½ cups and whisk well.
  11. Don’t put the whisker away yet – bring the broth to boil whisking constantly. Continue whisking when the liquid boils – it will thicken into a gravy. Remove from heat, taste, adjust seasonings.
  12. Let cool, ladle into a freezer-safe container or Ziploc bag and freeze. The night before Thanksgiving, remove from freezer and let thaw in the refrigerator. Reheat over low heat before serving, whisking vigorously to smoothen out the separation.
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