Food Network Magazine (already moved on to the December issue) had a really good November issue this year. I found lots of recipes and tips for fall cooking and baking. They also have “The Sequel” for round two of the turkey. Two recipes that I know I’ll use again just for Thanksgiving are the gravy and the cranberry sauce recipes. The gravy stock I made the day before and the cranberry sauce I made in the morning.
- 2 Tablespoons of butter
- 1 medium leek
- Neck, heart and gizzard from the turkey
- 8 cups low-sodium fat free chicken broth
- 3 springs thyme, parsley and rosemary
- 1 bay leaf
Melt the butter in a Dutch oven. Add the onion and turkey parts till parts are browned. Add the broth, herbs and bay leaf; simmer two hours. Strain the broth into a 1 quart plastic container. Store the stock in fridge till ready for use.
To make the gravy, in a heavy bottom sauce pan using a whisk add a ½ cup of turkey drippings, ½ cup of flour stirring till a roux is made. Add a ½ cup of the stock to incorporate the roux so that you do not have lumps. Add the remainder of your stock. Adjust the thickness to your liking. NOTICE – no salt added except what’s in the chicken broth.
- 1 orange, zested and juiced
- 2 cups fresh cranberries
- ¾ cup sugar
Add the zest into a medium saucepan. Add the juice, cranberries and sugar to the pan and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Takes about 10 to 15 minutes till the sauce thickens and berries pop. Store in a container till ready to use. The sauce thickens as it cools. The recipe adds walnuts but I prefer the orange and cranberry flavor all by itself.
Notes for next year. For 2011 we roasted a fresh turkey on the grill. I’ve always used a frozen turkey.
- Advantages: No thawing.
- Difference: It roasted faster. Cost A LOT more. Didn’t seem “bloated” like the frozen ones were.
- Would I do it again: Probably not because I did not see a taste difference.