Bourbon Gravy 101
Any time you have pan drippings from a roast, be it red meat or fowl, you have the beginnings of gravy. Just think of gravy as any roux-based sauce: Make a roux from fat and flour, add a liquid, and simmer. That’s it. Make the gravy directly in the roasting pan so you are sure to get every last bit of the browned meat juices, as these provide flavor and color. The proportions below are for about 2 cups of gravy, so just multiply it out for the amount that you need, allowing about 1/3 cup per person.
6 to 8servings (about 2 cups)
6 to 8servings (about 2 cups)
  • pan drippings from roast chicken, turkey, goose, beef, or pork
  • 2cups reduced-sodium chicken or beef broth(see Note), as needed
  • 1/4cup bourbon
  • 3tablespoons unbleached all-purpose flour
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  1. Pour the pan drippings into a 2-cup gravy separator (or glass bowl), leaving any browned bits in the bottom of the pan. Let the pan drippings stand for 3 to 5 minutes. Pour off the dark juices from the separator into a liquid measuring cup, leaving the clear fat in the separator. (Or spoon off the fat from the top of the pan drippings in the bowl, and transfer them to a smaller bowl. Pour the degreased juices into a liquid measuring cup.)
  2. Add enough stock to the drippings in the measuring cup to make 2 cups total cooking liquid.
  3. Add 3 tablespoons of the reserved fat to the pan and heat until sizzling over medium-low heat. (If you do not have enough fat, make up the difference with melted butter.) Whisk the flour into the pan. Let the mixture bubble, whisking constantly, until it turns beige, about 1 minutes. Add the bourbon, then the broth mixture and whisk well. (This is your chance to eliminate any lumps, so put some elbow grease into it!) Bring it to a simmer, whisking up the browned bits on the bottom of the pan. Simmer, whisking occasionally, until the gravy has thickened and lost any taste of raw flour, 2 to 3 minutes. If the gravy seems too thin, increase the heat to medium and boil until it is as thick as you wish. If the gravy seems too thick, thin it with additional stock. Season to taste with salt and pepper. If desired, strain the gravy through a wire sieve to remove any extraneous bits of drippings. Serve it immediately. (Leftover gravy can be cooled, covered, and refrigerated for up to 3 days.)
Recipe Notes

Of course, use chicken broth for poultry and beef for red meats.  Homemade stock is always better than canned broth.  At Thanksgiving, I always use homemade turkey broth, made from the giblets (but not the liver, which is bitter) and turkey parts (such as separately purchased wings or backs).