What is Thanksgiving without covering your entire plate with gravy? Traditionally gravy is made with the drippings from roasting the turkey all day, but what if you’re like our family and deep fry the bird? With no drippings no gravy right? Wrong, although there is a little more prep to get it right, it is something that can be made a day or so ahead of time. All you need are some turkey necks, yup necks.
Turkey necks are perfect for making the best stock. My turkey stock is a little different than my other stocks mainly because umami is the secret. To build umami I roast the necks darker than you think you need, roast the usual vegetable suspects like onion, celery, carrot, and garlic but with the addition of mushrooms, and Worcestershire. Another way to add umami is to make a roux. I know there are a lot of ways to thicken a gravy but nothing adds flavor like a good roux. Everything is better with a good foundation, so I actually made a big pot of this and use it stuffing and potatoes. Two days ahead of time I make this stock let it go all day, the next day makes the gravy and stuffing, then the day of cook the stuffing, reheat the gravy and add the rest of the stock to the potatoes.
- 2 Turkey necks
- 2 Onions
- 4 Carrots
- 4 stocks Celery
- 1 cup Shittake Mushrooms
- 1 head Garlic
- 1/4 cup Natural Oil
- 1/4 cup AP Flour
- 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- 2 teaspoons fresh Sage, minced
- 1 teaspoon fresh Thyme, minced
- 1 tablespoon Butter
- Salt and Pepper to taste
- Oil a big ol' sheet tray/cookie sheet, season the turkey necks with salt and pepper (and any chicken pieces that you have that could be boiled) roast until golden brown.
- Ruff chop all the vegetables, add to the cookie sheet once the necks are browned. Roast until the veggies are golden brown.
- Add everything to a big stockpot, cover with water and bring to a simmer. Optionally take the sheet tray with all the roasty toasty goodness place it on your stovetop on medium heat, add about a cup of water and scrape all that good fawned off and add to the stockpot. Season with salt and pepper and allow to boil 8-12 hours or overnight.
- Strain all the solids out of the stock and toss (or pull the meat off the necks for a snack) taste the stock season with salt and pepper if needed and add Worcestershire sauce. At this point, the stock is done set aside 4 cups of the stock for the gravy and use the remainder for whatever.
- In a large frypan add the oil and flour and cook on medium-low heat stirring occasionally but keeping a close eye on it, cook until the roux is light golden brown.
- While the roux is browning add the stock to a saucepan and add the fresh herbs and let simmer.
- When the roux is ready Carefully add the stock a ladle at a time to the roux, whisking continuously to make sure there are no lumps. Keep adding until all the liquid is incorporated, taste for seasoning, then finish with butter and serve. If you're making the gravy a day ahead keep the butter out until reheated and ready to serve.