Monday, November 23, 2009


If there's one thing you don't need, it's to leave too many dishes to the last minute on Thanksgiving. For nearly a dozen years now, I've taken a very organized approach to the holiday, starting my cooking a few days in advance. Making gravy at the last minute not only takes up your entire stove, but it interferes with the flow of side dishes going in and out of the ovens according to schedule. What really makes it difficult, though, is my ceramic topped stove with the vent in the middle that does not accommodate my large roasting pan as well as it could.  After making this classic gravy a few days in advance way back when, I've never gone back to that last minute, frantic whisking. I can't tell you where I got the recipe (I don't remember), but the end result is delicious. You can make it 2 or 3 days ahead and you can even freeze it for up to 6 months.

Makes 6 cups; NI per 1/3 cup is 73 cal, 6 g fat, 4 g carb, 33 mg sodium, 3 g protein

2 T olive oil
6 lb turkey wings or legs or thighs or any combination
5 ribs celery, chopped
1 onion, chopped
1 head garlic, halved
12 cups chicken broth
1 stick unsalted butter
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1 T apple cider vinegar
salt and pepper to taste

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.

Saute turkey wings, celery, onion, and garlic in a roasting pan on top of the stove over medium high heat until they begin to brown; turn and brown on other side.

Transfer to oven and roast 45 minutes. Turn the wings over and roast an additional 45 minutes.

Add broth to the pan and cook in the oven for 1 hour more, until reduced to about 8 cups. Strain the stock and set aside. (I remove the meat from the wings and freeze to use at a later time in soup.)

Melt the butter in a large pot over medium heat. Whisk in the flour and cook 2 minutes, whisking constantly.

Gradually add the strained stock, whisking until smooth. Bring to a boil and boil, stirring, for 2 minutes to thicken. Reduce the heat to medium low and simmer 10 minutes more. Finish with the vinegar, salt, and pepper.

I love this turkey gravy. It is just thick enough, not that awful viscous stuff in a can. The vinegar, though not strong, seems to brighten the taste of the finished gravy. I am not a gravy person, but this on my mashed potatoes equals heaven.


  1. This is the perfect gravy!! Advance planning and prep is definitely the way to go. Hope your Thanksgiving is fabulous :D

  2. Love the idea of make-ahead gravy!! I always get frustrated when I'm trying to get all the side dishes together and the gravy needs so much babysitting. Why not make the gravy ahead and microwave it? I love all the great ideas I am getting from everyone this year!! I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving :D

  3. Oh my, I wish I'd read your gravy post a few days ago. Bob usually makes the gravy in our house and, yes, he takes up a lot of space. This is an excellent idea. Saving it for sure. May you have a wonderful Thanksgiving sweet friend.

  4. Great version of this gravy! It's so much easier, isn't it? I also love the kitties warming up by the fireplace. That's exactly what mine are doing right now.
    PS: I laughed at your brining comment on my blog. I'm glad I'm not alone with that.


  5. Thoase are some contented looking cats! The gravy looks really good - I had no idea you could make gravy ahead of time!


Thank you for visiting The Food of Love. I know it takes time to make a comment, but please know that they are very much appreciated.