Everyone is always trying to think of ways to ease the stress of Thanksgiving day prep. Well, I have another piece of advice to offer. Make turkey stock the day before Thanksgiving.
When I make a turkey, I clean it the day before I plan to roast it. I figured why not do something with the things I have to remove from the turkey… so I did something with them. I didn’t have a recipe or anything. I just threw what I had laying around in a pot of water and a few hours later, voila! Homemade turkey stock!
I then used the stock on the day I was roasting my turkey to moistened stuffing and make gravy before the turkey was ever out of the oven. Talk about a stress reliever and time saver! You too can (should) make turkey stock the day before Thanksgiving. And, make your gravy early too. It will give you time to have one extra glass of wine on the big day, and that’s really all that matters. Here’s what I did:
- Take neck bone and giblets out of the turkey.
- Rinse everything and then put in a medium saucepan.
- Add aromatics to the pot: a couple carrots, a stalk or two of celery, half an onion, a couple cloves of garlic, and a few stems of parsley. This is what I had, so this is what I added. You can add more veggies and/or herbs if you like. I only chopped things so they would fit in the pot; no need for lots of dicing with this “recipe.”
- Fill the pot with water until everything is covered by at least 1-2 inches of water.
- Bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer.
- Continue to simmer, with the lid off for at least 3 hours. I stirred it every so often because I like to stir things. The liquid will reduce by at least half and you will be left with gorgeous turkey stock. The longer you reduce the liquid, the more concentrated the flavor will be.
- Taste and add salt and pepper if you like or, keep it plain and add salt and pepper to the dishes you are making with the stock.
- Carefully pour all of the liquid through a sieve over a bowl, discard the solids and keep the beautiful stock in the fridge until you need it the next day.