The base for a flavorful soup, sauce or gravy is in the stock. Around the holidays when gluten-free gravy is a staple, it’s nice to have some really good turkey stock or broth standing by. This stock is slow cooked with turkey bones, making it a rich flavorful bone broth.
In my opinion, gravy and gluten-free stuffing are the two must important things on the Thanksgiving table. A flavorful rich stock makes these two dishes even better. So before the rush and chaos starts, I make my turkey stock in early November, put it in a few containers and store it in the freezer.
This stock can be a substitute for chicken broth or bone broth in so many recipes. It will add rich flavor and texture to any of my gluten-free soup recipes.
What is the difference between stock and broth?
Broth is made with the meat and stock is made with bones as well. What’s the point of the bones? They provide great flavor and add collagen, which makes for a rich texture.
I find the easiest and least expensive way to make turkey broth/stock is to buy some turkey necks and wings. They are inexpensive and have several bones. The method for making a stock and a broth is pretty much the same, so however you prefer to do it, it will work. And since this recipe uses bones it is essentially a bone broth.
Steps to Perfect Stock or Bone Broth
There are step-by-step instructions in the recipe below but here’s a little bit of the hows and whys of stock making:
- Start with cold water and just the bones/meat first.
- Bring the water to a simmer and skim off the white foam and brown bits that rise to the top (if using raw bones and meat). This will create a nice clear, clean liquid. You can skip this step if using cooked bones,
- Add the herbs and vegetables once the foam stops forming.
- Keeping the liquid at no higher than a simmer, for the entire time, will also keep it clear.
- The longer you allow the stock to simmer, the more rich and flavorful it will be. Chicken and poultry stock are wonderful if you start them first thing in the morning and let them simmer all day.
- Finally, strain the liquid and cool it quickly.
Turkey Stock (Bone Broth)
- 2 turkey wings and 4 turkey necks or any combination of turkey parts that is close to that amount
- 1 large onion
- 2 carrots
- 3 stalks celery
- handful of fresh parsley
- 3 fresh sage leaves or 1 tsp dried sage leaves or 1/2 tsp ground sage
- 1 sprig fresh thyme or 1 tsp dried
- 2 bay leaves
- 5 peppercorns
- Cut a few slits in all the turkey parts, cutting all the way to the bone. This will help expose the bones and allow them to give up their collagen.If using cooked turkey and bones pull the skin and meat off the bone.
- Place the turkey parts in a large pot (5-6 quart recommended) and add enough cold water to cover the turkey. Place over a high flame. As soon as the water begins to bubble turn the flame down to medium-low.**It is important that the liquid does not boil. You are looking for the water gently simmer or to barely bubble.
- Roughly chop the carrot and celery and cut the onion into quarters. This stock will cook long enough that it is not necessary to chop the vegetables into small pieces.
- Skip this step if using cooked turkey and bones.As the water bubbles, a white foam will begin to form at the surface. Use a large spoon to skim off this foam and any brown bits. Keep doing this with the pot at a very light simmer until the foam no longer forms, about 20 minutes.
- Drop in the onion, carrot, celery and herbs. Cook for 3-8 hours over a low flame with the pot barely bubbling. No need to stir, just check it every so often to be sure it doesn’t boil. It is better to have the flame too low than too high. If the liquid level gets too low, it’s ok to add more water.
- Remove the turkey parts. Strain the stock through a fine mesh strainer. If you are not using it right away, get it cooled down quickly and then into the refrigerator or freezer. To cool down, put it into a metal bowl and place in the sink with ice water.
- If you want to remove the fat from the liquid, once it has cooled, refrigerate the soup overnight. The fat will rise to the top and harden making it very easy to remove.