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Turkey, Gravy and Mashed Potatoes

Make-Ahead Turkey Gravy Recipe

Adapted from here.

Course Dinner
Keyword homemade gravy recipe, make ahead turkey gravy, thanksgiving gravy, turkey gravy
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours
Servings 10 servings

Ingredients

  • 3 pounds turkey wings, flats and drumettes separated
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 2 heads of garlic, cut in half crosswise (you can leave the skins on)
  • 2 shallots, halved (you can leave the skins on)
  • 2 stalks celery, cut into big pieces
  • 2 carrots, peeled and cut into big pieces
  • 4 ounces shiitake mushrooms, torn into large pieces (stems included)
  • 2 teaspoons black peppercorns, lightly crushed
  • 1/2 cup amontillado sherry (or dry sherry or dry white wine)
  • 6 cups low-sodium chicken stock (I used my homemade chicken stock here)
  • 6 sprigs parsley
  • 3 sprigs thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 6 tablespoons all purpose flour
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons sherry vinegar (or red wine vinegar)
  • 1 teaspoon MSG

Instructions

  1. Preheat an oven to 450°F. Add wings to a large cast iron skillet and toss with 2 tablespoons olive oil. Roast on the bottom rack, flipping halfway through, until golden brown and crispy in spots (30 - 35 minutes).
  2. Add garlic, shallots, celery, carrots and mushrooms to a medium bowl and toss with remaining olive oil. Take the skillet from the oven, then scrape all the vegetables on top. Add the peppercorns and carefully toss everything together. Return the skillet to the oven and roast until everything is deeply golden brown (35 to 40 minutes). Halfway through cooking, I like to flip the wings again and move around any veggies that aren’t getting golden.

  3. Transfer the skillet from the oven to the stovetop, then transfer the wings to a large pot (you can leave the veggies in the skillet). Place the skillet over medium-high heat, add sherry and scrape up any brown bits stuck to the bottom of the skillet. Continue to cook until the sherry is almost completely reduced (about 2 mins).

  4. Scrape everything from the skillet into the pot with the turkey, then add stock, parsley, thyme and bay. Bring to a gentle simmer over medium-high heat, reduce heat to medium-low and continue to simmer until the stock is reduced by 1/3 (about 35 to 40 minutes). While the stock is simmering, you’ll want to turn the wings occasionally as they poke up above the surface. Also, skim off any excess fat that pools on the surface.

  5. While the stock is simmering, add flour and butter to a small bowl and mash together with a fork until combined. Set aside.
  6. Using a slotted spoon, remove big solids from the stock and discard. Pour the stock through a fine-mesh strainer into a large bowl or measuring cup. Discard any solids. Rinse out the pot and return the turkey stock back in. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, then whisk in the flour-butter mixture until smooth. Continue to simmer until the gravy is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon (about 6 to 8 minutes).

  7. Take the gravy off the heat and season to taste with salt and pepper. If you are making this gravy up to 5 days in advance, then stop here, transfer to a container and store in the fridge. When you are ready to serve, rewarm the gravy on the stovetop over medium heat, then stir in vinegar and MSG*. Taste for seasoning one last time.

Recipe Notes

* Vinegar and MSG can break down flavor compounds in the gravy if added too far in advance. If you plan on making this gravy on Thanksgiving, then go ahead and add the vinegar and MSG right away. If you are making this gravy in advance (up to 5 days), then add the vinegar and MSG when you are reheating the gravy for Thanksgiving dinner.