Turkey Gravy with Bouquet Garni

Turkey Gravy with Bouquet Garni

We often think of gravy as a point of American pride but It's actually the French who deserve our thanks on this day for this must-have-ingredient. Thank you France for giving us gravy on Thanksgiving. They might correct you and call it Bechamel or Velouté but that's fine. The fact is, it’s delicious. 


Servings: 4-8

Source: Culinary Vegetable Institute at The Chef's Garden



  • Giblets (from a whole turkey)
  • 4 cups water (cold)
  • 1 tied bouquet of tarragon, sage, thyme, and parsley
  • 8 tablespoons butter
  • ½ Cup all-purpose flour
  • pan drippings (or chicken stock if needed)
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


  • Remove the liver from the giblets and refrigerate.
  • Place the remaining giblets into a saucepan and cover with 4 cups cold water; bring to a boil.
  • Reduce the heat to low and simmer the giblets for about 1 1/2 to 2 hours.
  • Add the liver and the bouquet garni to the saucepan and simmer for another 20 minutes.
  • Place a mesh strainer or colander over a bowl. Drain the giblets and set the liquid aside with the herbs to use in the gravy.
  • Let the giblets cool.
  • Remove the meat from the neck and chop with the rest of the simmered ingredients.
  • Melt the butter in a saucepan and add the chopped meat. Carefully sear and allow the butter to brown deeply. Stir in the flour. Reduce the heat to low and cook, stirring for 3 to 5 minutes. 
  • If you don't have drippings from a roasted turkey yet, or if you only have a small amount, add the giblet broth or chicken stock to make 3 cups of volume. The roasting juices will be more flavorful than the poaching liquid. Use it if you can.
  • Slowly stir in the drippings and/or broth with the bouquet into the dark roux. Add the milk. Continue cooking and stirring until thickened. Use a whisk. 
  • Taste and season the gravy with kosher salt and a heavy hand of  freshly ground black pepper.
  • Remove the herbs and serve hot. This can be made a day or two in advance. Refrigerate until you're ready to heat and serve. 

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