Thanksgiving Rewind: Reflecting on Special Thanksgiving Moments

Turkey has a way of bringing people together. In fact, it’s hard to think of a Thanksgiving without it. While a perfectly cooked Butterball turkey, tender and juicy all on its own, has been the center of our Thanksgiving table for as long as I can remember, my family has always loved having delicious gravy to supplement!

Before I was a Talk-Line expert, I was the resident gravy-maker in my family. I didn’t even eat gravy when I started making it but after a while I began feeling comfortable when called to the stovetop to turn turkey drippings and flour into a silky, savory sauce after a beautifully browned turkey emerges from the oven.

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The first time I was asked to make gravy, I went in blind. Although I was fairly confident in my cooking abilities, I’d never made turkey gravy. I knew that I should scrape up the browned bits from the bottom of the roasting pan to inject flavor and that I would need chicken broth to supplement the drippings from the bird.

I knew I needed a starch to thicken things up, but I had no idea how much or when to add it. Adding butter always sounds like a good idea to me, so I tossed a stick into the mixture and turned on the flame. As it cooked, it started to separate into a slick, gloppy mess. I added more flour to try to bind it together, but it didn’t help. Nothing helped. There was way too much fat in my gravy, thanks to my impromptu butter addition, and there was no way to blend it into the creamy sauce that everyone was expecting.

I tossed it. My first year as the gravy-maker, we didn’t have gravy at all. Thankfully, the turkey was perfectly juicy, so no one really missed it.

When Thanksgiving rolled around the next year, I was ready. I had studied up, and I realized how easy it could be to make gravy from scratch.  I figured out the ratios of liquid to starch, and knew that adding extra fat to the mix would throw off the whole thing.

My family gave me the chance to redeem myself and I nailed it: perfectly smooth, velvety gravy with tons of flavor, begging to be drizzled over mashed potatoes and drumsticks. I was so proud of how far I’d come since the year before that I happily spooned my perfect gravy over my heaping plate. I’ve been the go-to-gravy girl ever since.

You can wow your family with homemade gravy this year, too. It’s easier than you think, and Butterball has it all laid out for you in this Turkey Gravy with Pan Drippings Recipe. Your gravy boat is going to see a lot more action after you master this simple, delicious recipe because you will want to make it more often than once a year at Thanksgiving.

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Throwback to your favorite Thanksgiving memory and celebrate the ultimate family meal with Butterball this year. Visit Butterball.com/Sweeps and share your favorite recipe or holiday memories for a chance to win prizes.

Happy holidays!

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