Showing posts with label turkey gravy. Show all posts
Showing posts with label turkey gravy. Show all posts

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

What Does Thanksgiving Taste Like? Foodie Poll + Perfect Turkey Gravy via Cleo Coyle




What does Christmas taste like?

That is the question my coffeehouse manager Clare Cosi asks her quirky staff of baristas at the start of Holiday Grind.
https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=901186549894527&set=a.107584265921430.13885.100000095713933&type=1&theater
Published back in 2009,
Holiday Grind (Coffeehouse
Mystery #8)
reappeared on a
recent B&N.com bestseller list
Read more in my facebook
post here.


Their answers define their charactersand help Clare create a menu of wildly popular Fa-la-la-la-lattes for the season.




fa-la-la-la-lattes!   > > > 

Cleo Coyle has a partner in crime-writing, her
husband, Marc Cerasini. Learn more about them
and their books here.


Now Marc and I are using
the phrase from our own book!


What does Thanksgiving taste like?

*****************************





***************************
If you do not see the poll above, simply click this link
to take it 
at the PollDaddy site.




WIN BOOK AND MUG

Drawing 12 Noon
Thanksgiving Day!


Drawing is Over
Congrats to our comment winner:
Jim Elliott "Library Jim"

After you take the poll, tell Marc and me how you voted in the COMMENTS of this post (or the polldaddy comment area) and you will be entered in a random drawing to win a signed copy of ONCE UPON A GRIND, the new Coffeehouse Mystery, which Penguin is publishing in a beautiful hardcover edition this December 2nd.

You will also win this fun custom-designed mug with a favorite saying of the octogenarian owner of our coffeehouse (Clare's beloved boss and former mother-in-law) Madame...

"Survive everything. And do it with style."

~ Madame in 
The Coffeehouse Mysteries


As for me, my voting on the poll
was tough. I couldn't decide between
pumpkin and pecan pie...


You can get my favorite recipe for Pecan Pie Bars
in my 
November Coffeehouse Mystery Newsletter,
going out soon. (Sign up 
here.)

For my husband, Marc,
Thanksgiving would not be 

Thanksgiving without turkey GRAVY!

And that's the subject of
our recipe post today...



The Mystery of Perfect Gravy


When used correctly
(and Marc and I will show you how),
this secret ingredient will let you
serve smooth, velvety gravy to
your guests instead of a lumpy
turkey glue. And this method
(used by restaurants)
will give you enough gravy
to serve a crowd!
Anyone who's thickened gravy using the traditional method (aka, flour) knows that if you use too little, your gravy will be weak and thin, and if you use too much, your gravy will transform into a lump of gelatinous glue as soon as it begins to cool.

To solve this dilemma, celebrity chef Alton Brown recently reminded us what restaurants do to make the perfect Turkey Day gravy. Because this gravy is made with stock, you can make plenty of it--and it will be a smooth, velvety gravy.

So what is the secret ingredient? It’s potato starch! And, no, it's not used for thickening; it’s there to prevent clumping!

The potato starch will stop the flour from congealing, so you’ll be able to serve your guests a rich, smooth, lump-free gravy and not a ball of turkey-flavored glue!

Better still, you can divide the preparation by making the turkey stock the day before, and finishing the gravy right before the Thanksgiving Day meal.

Marc and I guarantee that your guests will (pun intended) gobble this gravy up!



How to Make Perfect Turkey Gravy 

(and enough to feed a crowd!)


Makes 3 cups of gravy! Woo-hoo!





To download this recipe in a free PDF document that you can print, save, or share, click here and enjoy! ~ Cleo
Click here for the
downloadable recipe PDF:
How to Make Perfect
Turkey Gravy.





Ingredients and directions adapted by
culinary mystery author Cleo Coyle
from a recipe by celebrity chef Alton Brown

INGREDIENTS:

For the Turkey Stock (this will yield 3 cups):

1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 turkey neck saved from the bird
1 bag of turkey giblets, saved from the bird
1 large yellow onion, quartered
1 large carrot, quartered
2 stalks celery, quartered
¼  teaspoon kosher salt
6 cups water
1 teaspoon dried thyme
½ teaspoon dried rosemary
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns

For the Final Turkey Gravy:

1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon potato starch
1 teaspoon kosher salt
¼  teaspoon ground black pepper

Step 1 - Make the fresh turkey stock: Heat the oil in a large pot over medium heat for about 2 minutes. Cut the neck in half and sauté for 6 minutes or until browned. Add the giblets, the quartered onion, carrot, and celery, along with the kosher salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are softened, about 5 or six minutes. Add the 6 cups water and stir in the thyme, rosemary, bay leaf and the peppercorns. Cover and bring to a rolling boil over high heat, cooking for about 1 minute. Now uncover the pot, reduce heat to low and slowly simmer the stock for 90 minutes, until the stock reduces by half, to 3 cupsStrain the stock through a mesh strainer and let everything cool. Discard all solids. You can make the gravy now or refrigerate this stock for several hours or days.

Step 2 - Turn the stock into velvety gravy: Begin by placing 2 (of those 3) cups of your freshly-made turkey stock into a saucepan over medium heat. The remaining 1 cup of stock will be used to create your gravy. Here's how to do it...

Measure out ½ cup of your reserved stock and whisk in 1 tablespoon of flour until it completely dissolves and no lumps remain. You have just created a slurry. Gradually whisk this flour slurry into the 2 cups of stock warming in your saucepan. As you continue to whisk, bring the liquid to a boil and cook for 4 minutes or until slightly thickened. Now remove the pot from the burner and allow it to cool off a bit.

*WARNING NOTE FOR NEXT STEP: If the temperature is too high in the next step, the properties that make potato starch so useful are lost, so it is important to simmernot boil—the gravy once the potato starch slurry is added.

*Step 3 - Add the Secret Ingredient: Make a second slurry using that final 1/2 cup of your reserved, cooled stock and the 1 tablespoon of potato starch. (Make sure the potato starch dissolves into the slurry and no lumps remain.) On a low heat, whisk the potato starch slurry into the saucepan of gravy, along with the salt and pepper. While gently stirring, simmer but do not boil the gravy for about 5 minutes, it will begin to thicken. Continue to simmering until it reaches the thickness that you prefer.

Serve immediately or reserve in a gravy bowl or thermos until needed.
To store longer, place in fridge, in a covered container for up to 3 days.




For more Thanksgiving Recipe Ideas, 
including great tips on cooking your turkey,
be sure to visit our Mystery Lovers' Kitchen blog
"Savor the Season" Page by clicking here!







Click here for the
downloadable recipe PDF:
How to Make Perfect
Turkey Gravy, and...




Eat with (Thanksgiving-
Countdown) 
joy!

~ Cleo Coyle



New York Times bestselling author of
The Coffeehouse Mysteries


Friend me on facebook here. * Follow me on twitter here
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and investigates a cold case that's
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Tuesday, March 18, 2014

How to Make My Favorite Retro Diner Sandwich by Cleo Coyle

Prices at the deli counter have been giving my husband and I sticker shock for some time now. If you’re making lunch for one or two, the prices are tolerable. But if you’re buying for an entire family or a hungry group, be prepared to take out a second mortgage to pay the bill. 

Here in New York City, premium turkey breast is $8.00 (and more) a pound. We prefer to roast our own turkey sandwich meat for a fraction of that price, and we seldom fuss with a big bird. We simply use a small (6 to 7 pound) turkey breast. 

So here’s a simple recipe for buffet-style turkey. You can use it for a traditional meat-and-potatoes main meal or sandwich-slicing (or both)...





Cleo Coyle's husband is also
her partner in crime-writing.
Together they write
The Coffeehouse
Mysteries
Cleo Coyle’s 
Retro Deli-style
Roast Turkey


This small, all-white meat turkey breast tastes better than anything you can get at the deli counter. It's perfect for making our favorite retro diner sandwich, too, an open-faced turkey with mashed potatoes.

Our secret ingredient is a pair of turkey wings (or even two pairs). Small turkey breasts usually come without wings, but we buy them separately for roasting right along with the bird. The wings render plenty of extra juices for making the rich gravy. See the gravy recipe below this one, and... 

Eat with joy!
~ Cleo

Ingredients

6 to 8 pound turkey breast

+ 2 to 4 turkey wings
   (optional, for extra gravy juices)

3/4 stick (6 T) softened butter

1 teaspoon Bell Seasoning

1 teaspoon Poultry Seasoning

½ teaspoon white pepper

½ teaspoon Smokehouse Pepper

½ teaspoon ground sage

½ teaspoon Kosher salt


1 tablespoon cooking oil or cooking spray




A NOTE ABOUT SMALL TURKEY BREASTS:

Above is a standard (wingless) turkey breast of about 7 pounds. Depending on the area where you live, you will either find these in your grocery store or something called "Hotel-Style Breasts," which are sold mainly in the Northeast. The Hotel-Style Breasts are perfect for a buffet. They are generally larger than a regular turkey breast (closer to 10 pounds instead of 4-8), and they have the wings attached. Like the big (15 to 35 pound) turkeys, many brands of Hotel-Style Turkey include a packet of giblets. Small turkey breasts like the one above do not include giblets.


Directions

Step 1—Prep the slurry: First preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. When the butter is soft, place it in a bowl and add your Bell Seasoning, Poultry Seasoning, white pepper, Smokehouse Pepper, ground sage, and Kosher salt. Blend everything well with a fork until you have a beautiful green slurry. Wash the turkey breast and pat dry. If using wings, remove the wing tips, wash, and pat dry.


Step 2—Prep the bird: Line a shallow baking or roasting pan with aluminum foil. Grease the rack that sits on top. Place the turkey on the rack, and (if using) position wings on either side of the breast. Slather the breast with the slurry you made in Step 1. Massage the slurry under the skin to impart the flavor into the meat. 

You can coat the wings with the slurry, as well. Or simply salt and pepper the wings instead since you're cooking these wings for their juices rather than their meat. 


The wings in my photo above are not attached.
Most small turkey breasts come without wings.
Marc and I like to buy the wings separately and
roast them with the turkey for extra pan juices.

We often roast a second pair
of wings in a separate pan.

Step 3—Roast and cool: Roast the breast, uncovered, according to package instructions, or about 20 minutes per pound. During the last hour, baste the meat in its own juices every fifteen minutes or so. When the meat reaches a temperature of 165 degrees F, remove from oven, tent loosely with foil, and let sit for AT LEAST 30 MINUTES before slicing. Trust me on this! The resting period will keep your turkey nice and moist. If you slice it too soon after removing it from the oven, the juices will run out and the turkey meat will taste dry. 


Amazing pan juices
come from the wings.
 



Cleo's Favorite Retro Diner Sandwich...

Open-Faced Turkey
with Mashed Potatoes
and Gravy!


For a single serving...

A few juicy slices of freshly roasted turkey

A hearty scoop of mashed potatoes

2 slices of white bread (yes, it has to be white!)

Plenty of gravy (recipe below)

While the turkey is cooling, make mashed potatoes and gravy. Most home cooks have their favorite way to make mashed potatoes. If you feel adventurous, you can try my healthier potato, garlic, and carrot mash. It's absolutely delicious and very easy to make. Get the recipe here.

Good gravy and lots of it is the key to this deli-classic...



Cleo's
Turkey Gravy


Makes about 1 ½ cups

Ingredients:


2 cups pan drippings
  (or enough chicken stock to make 2 cups)

2 Tablespoons Wondra flour

Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

Step 1—Make a roux: While the turkey is cooling, pour off the pan drippings and let them cool. Skim off two tablespoons of fat from these drippings and warm this small amount of fat in a saucepan over medium-low heat. Stir in the flour until the mixture thickens. You’ve just created a roux. Now gently cook until the roux turns slightly brown (1-3 minutes).

Step 2—Finish the gravy: Measure your remaining pan drippings. If you have less than 2 cups, pour in enough chicken stock to make the full two. Whisk these two cups of drippings (and/or stock) into the roux that you made in Step 1. Heat the mixture to a boil, stirring constantly. Lower the heat but continue to stir and let the gravy simmer until it thickens and the flour cooks (4 to 5 minutes). The key here--
to prevent the gravy from breaking--really is stirring! Add salt and pepper to taste, serve hot, and...






Eat with joy!
~ Cleo Coyle

New York Times bestselling author of
The Coffeehouse Mysteries

Yes, this is me, Cleo (aka Alice). 
Friend me on facebook here.
Follow me on twitter here
Visit my online coffeehouse here.







To view the
Coffeehouse Mystery
book trailer, click here.
 





Now a National
Bestseller in Hardcover

A Coffeehouse Mystery 

*Starred Review* -Kirkus

"Top Pick"  -RT Book Reviews

"...a highly satisfying mystery."
-Publishers Weekly



See the book's
Recipe Guide
by clicking here.



* * * 


Coffeehouse Mystery
Free Title Checklist
(with mini plot summaries)


The Coffeehouse Mysteries are bestselling
works of amateur sleuth fiction set in a landmark
Greenwich Village coffeehouse, and each of the
13 titles includes the added bonus of recipes. 


* * * 


Haunted Bookshop
Free Title Checklist,