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turkey 101 by Yee-Fan Sun 1 2 3
continued from page 2

5 Slide the turkey in the oven and make note of the time. After about 45 minutes, heat up the stock and wine in a small saucepan and keep it on a simmer. Open the oven, lift the foil, and use a pastry brush to baste the bird by slathering the stock/wine mixture all over the top of the turkey to keep it moist. Recover the turkey with the foil and continue roasting. Repeat the basting every 20 minutes or so.

6 When it looks like you have about an hour and a half to an hour of roasting time left, remove the foil tent to let the breast brown. Slide off the bacon slices as well. (I generally just push them to the side, but you can remove them from the oven altogether if you like). At this point, there should be juices accumulating in the bottom of your roasting pan; if you’re low on your stock/wine mixture, you can use the baster to suck up pan juices and baste the bird.
*Note: If the turkey browns perfectly before the thermometer reaches the right temperature, you can recover it with the foil to keep it from over-cooking.

7 Meanwhile, make stock using the giblets and turkey neck. Place the bits in a pot along with the quartered onion, 2 carrots and celery stalk (broken into smaller pieces); add enough water to just cover. Bring to a boil and skim off the scummy foam. Lower the heat and simmer for an hour. Pour through a fine-mesh sieve, pressing on the meat and veggies to get out all the juices, and reserve the stock for gravy.

8 When the thermometer inserted into the thigh registers 175F (if you're using an instant-read thermometer, start checking when you think it's getting close), the turkey’s done roasting. Remove it from the oven and let it stand for at least 20 minutes before carving.

making the gravy
After you’ve roasted the turkey and transferred it to a serving platter, you’ll find yourself with a pan full of juices, turkey drippings, and bacon fat. The bacon fat will be mostly floating at the top, so pour off as much of that as you can, reserving about 1/3 of a cup.

Place the pan across two burners and pour in ˝ cup or so of turkey stock. With the heat on medium, gently scrape the bottom of the pan while you stir the stock, to de-glaze the pan and get all that good flavor from the drippings. When the pan has been de-glazed pretty well, strain the liquid into the same pot as the remaining stock, and warm on the stove.

In a saucepan, combine the 1/3 cup reserved pan oil and 1/3 cup of flour over medium heat. Stir well to incorporate the flour and the oil; you’ll see a thick paste form which will eventually begin to bubble. Cook for several minutes, stirring constantly, until the paste has turned a nice golden color. Add the warmed stock and stir until the mixture thickens and you have a nice rich gravy. Sprinkle salt and pepper to taste, and serve with the roasted turkey.

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