Roasted Turkey Carcass Broth
Browning the turkey bones is one of the secrets to an extra-tasty broth, well worth a few extra steps. Make the broth right away, then freeze in 1-cup portions for up to 6 months. Use it for cooking rice, in casseroles, in sauces, and as a base for soups.
Carcass from a 12 to 18-pound cooked turkey (use the roasting pan it was cooked in, if possible)
4 unpeeled onions (2 pounds)
2 carrots (1/2 pound)
3 stalks celery, with a few leaves
1 teaspoon black peppercorns
2 bay leaves
- If using roasting pan from turkey, pour drippings into a 1-quart glass measuring cup, and set aside. With hands and sturdy scissors or knife, break and cut carcass into smaller sections. Place the pieces in a single layer in turkey roasting pan or in a clean roasting pan. Roast in a 500°F (260°C) oven until well browned, 35 to 40 minutes.
- Move the turkey pieces to the 12 to 16-quart pan. Pour pan drippings into the cup with other drippings. Place the roasting pan across 2 burners over high heat. Add 2 cups water and stir to loosen browned bits, about 3 minutes. Pour the liquid and the loosened bits into the pan with the turkey pieces. Skim and discard the fat from the cup of drippings, then add the drippings to the pan.
- Quarter onions. Cut carrots and celery into 3-inch lengths. Add the vegetables, peppercorns, and bay leaves to pan with bones. Add enough hot or boiling water to the pan to cover the bones and vegetables by about 2 inches (about 5 to 5 1/2 quarts total). Cover and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat and simmer for 8 to 12 hours.
- Set a large colander over a 6 to 8-quart pan. With tongs and a ladle, lift most of the bones and seasonings into colander. Let drain, then discard the contents of colander. Set pan with colander in sink. Very carefully (use mitts or potholders), pour broth through colander. Lift colander to drain; discard what's left in the colander. Let the broth cool about 1 hour, stirring occasionally.
- Skim fat from broth and discard, or chill until broth is cold, then skim fat. Use the broth immediately, keep refrigerated in an airtight container up to 4 days, or freeze for up to 6 months.
Makes 4 to 5 quarts.