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Pan Gravy 101

Source: Thanksgiving 101
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Active Time:  10 Minutes
Total Time:  15 Minutes
  Makes about 3 1/2 cups (allow 1/3 cup gravy per person, more if you want some leftover)
There are a lot of different ways to make gravy -- thickening with a flour-water paste or cornstarch, using a saucepan or a roasting pan, etc. But here's how to make the most delicious, greasefree, lumpless, dark mahogany brown gravy in the world.
Pan drippings from roast turkey
About 3 1/2 cups Homemade Turkey stock or canned reduced-sodium chicken stock
6 tablespoons all-purpose flour
Salt and freshly milled black pepper
When the turkey is done, transfer it to a serving platter and set aside. Always degrease the drippings and stock before making gravy. Pour the pan drippings into a 1-quart glass measure or medium bowl, leaving any browned bits in the bottom of the roasting pan. Let stand for 5 minutes. Using a large spoon, skim the clear yellow fat that has risen to the surface and reserve. (If the drippings don't seem dark enough, pour half back into the roasting pan and set over two burners. Bring to a boil over high heat. As the drippings reduce and darken, occasionally pour in the remaining drippings until the liquid in the pan is as dark as you want. The amount of drippings will decrease, but the finished gravy will be darker and taste better, without having to resort to bottled gravy coloring.) Add enough stock to the drippings to measure 4 cups total.

Set the roasting pan on two burners over moderately low heat. Add 6 tablespoons of the reserved fat to the pan. (If you don't have enough fat drippings you can always use melted butter). Sprinkle the flour into the pan, whisking constantly, until it turns beige, 1 to 2 minutes. (Use a whisk to avoid lumpy gravy. A flat paddle-shaped whisk works better than a balloon which to reach into the corners of the pan. If you have a non-stick roasting pan, use a heatproof plastic whisk, available at kitchenware stores: Mine has become an indispensable tool.) It is important to let the mixture cook for a minute or two to allow the flour to lose its raw taste, but adjust the heat as needed to keep it from burning. Whisk in the stock/drippings mixture, scraping up the browned bits on the bottom of the pan. Simmer for 2 to 3 minutes, whisking occasionally. If the gravy seems too thin, increase the heat to medium and boil until it is as thick as you wish. If the gravy seems too thick, thin with additional stock. Season with salt and pepper. If desired, strain the gravy through a wire sieve to remove any extraneous browned bits of drippings.

TIP: The secret to dark, rich gravy? Dark, rich pan drippings. Let the drippings evaporate into a dark brown glaze during roasting, but don't let them burn. Whenever the pan looks dry, moisten the drippings with more turkey stock, wine, or water so they don't scorch. The darker and heavier your roasting pan, the darker and richer the drippings. Thin aluminum roasters make wimpy drippings.

Recipe reprinted by permission of Broadway Books. All rights reserved.
Date Added: 01/01/2008
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 Liquid Gold: Turkey Gravy
Nutrition Facts per Serving
Yield:   Makes about 3 1/2 cups (allow 1/3 cup gravy per person, more if you want some leftover)
Calories: 71
Fat. Total: 5g
Protein: 1g
Carbohydrates, Total: 4g
Sodium: 148mg
% Cal. from Fat: 63%
Cholesterol: 6mg
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