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  #1  
Old 09-12-2010, 09:56 PM
Northern Piper Northern Piper is offline
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What do you do with turkey giblets?

Mrs Piper and I roasted a turkey this weekend - no reason in particular, just that we felt like a turkey.

As always, when I pulled the giblets out of its inner cavity, I thought to myself, "What do people do with giblets?" Piper Mom never used them for anything, as far as I can remember.

So, turkey lovin' Dopers, what do you do with giblets? I've heard that some use them for gravy? In the stuffing? If so, how? Or do you just toss them into the stock pot with the turkey carcass after the meal?

Thanksgiving is in a month's time (Canadian, that is), so any suggestions on how to expand my turkey cooking repertoire would be greatly appreciated.
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  #2  
Old 09-12-2010, 10:00 PM
needscoffee needscoffee is offline
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I used to simmer them, chop them up and put them in the stuffing, but now I give them to the cats and dog (the neck gets simmered and the meat pulled off for them, too.)
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Old 09-12-2010, 10:08 PM
Alpha Twit Alpha Twit is offline
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Generally speaking, giblets go in the freezer for later use. "Later use" generally happens when I get the parts from ten or more birds and involves one of three activities.

1 - seasoned cornmeal breading and deep frying for high calories snackage
2 - doggie treats when pet owning friends visit
3 - fish bait - leave the livers on your front porch for about three days before fishing and the catfish will jump into the boat to get them (almost)
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Old 09-12-2010, 10:09 PM
Lynn Bodoni Lynn Bodoni is offline
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My husband is crazy about liver, so I always fry up any livers that a turkey or chicken or duck might have, and give it to him. I simmer and chop up the giblets and neck, chop them up and the neck meat removed, and give them to the cats. I use the broth to make gravy, or, if I don't make gravy and somehow survive the wrath of Bill, then I refrigerate the stock and use it when I boil up the bones for soup.
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Old 09-12-2010, 10:13 PM
bouv bouv is offline
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My mom always uses them for the gravy. Take the giblets, along with a quartered onion and some chunks of carrots and celery, and simmer them in some water for a little while. Then add that to the drippings in the bottom of the pan.
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  #6  
Old 09-12-2010, 10:24 PM
TriPolar TriPolar is offline
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Put the neck and giblets in some water and simmer on the stove as the turkey cooks. When the turkey is near ready, chop up the giblets, and any meat that comes off the neck, and return to the stock, along with chopped onion, carrot, celery, and other seasonings you like. Toss the rest of the neck. There's your base for gravy. I try to make the gravy in the turkey pan after draining the excess drippings, and deglazing with the stock.

Or as Alpha Twit suggested, if you have enough, fry up a bucket of 'lizards and gizzards'.
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  #7  
Old 09-12-2010, 11:31 PM
Chefguy Chefguy is offline
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Simmer them with veggies to make stock. Remove them, chop them and put them in the gravy roux. Use the stock for the gravy liquid.



Or you could read the post above this one for the same information.

Last edited by Chefguy; 09-12-2010 at 11:32 PM..
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  #8  
Old 09-12-2010, 11:50 PM
TriPolar TriPolar is offline
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Originally Posted by Chefguy View Post
Or you could read the post above this one for the same information.
S'allright dude. As long the bag of giblets don't turn up inside the turkey at carving time
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  #9  
Old 09-13-2010, 12:35 AM
panache45 panache45 is online now
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I chop them up and add them to the stuffing. On the occasions when I fix turkey without stuffing, I add the giblets to soup, along with the carcass.
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  #10  
Old 09-13-2010, 03:34 AM
Little Nemo Little Nemo is online now
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You can add some celery, peppers, and onions and make dirty rice.
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  #11  
Old 09-13-2010, 07:51 AM
Oly Oly is offline
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Originally Posted by TriPolar View Post
Put the neck and giblets in some water and simmer on the stove as the turkey cooks. When the turkey is near ready, chop up the giblets, and any meat that comes off the neck, and return to the stock, along with chopped onion, carrot, celery, and other seasonings you like. Toss the rest of the neck. There's your base for gravy. I try to make the gravy in the turkey pan after draining the excess drippings, and deglazing with the stock.
I do pretty much this, with the exception that I add the drippings, after deglazing the roasting pan, to the pot with the giblets, then blast it with my hand blender til smooth. If you get the proportions right (which I've never tried to figure out, but there seems to be a big margin of error as it almost always works), the gravy ends up at a really good consistency. No need to thicken with flour, etc.

Last edited by Oly; 09-13-2010 at 07:52 AM.. Reason: fixed quote function
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  #12  
Old 09-13-2010, 08:04 AM
tdn tdn is offline
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I throw them in a frying pan along with some butter, chopped celery, and chopped onion. Then I discard the giblets and turn the rest into stuffing.
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  #13  
Old 09-13-2010, 08:06 AM
aruvqan aruvqan is offline
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generally what everybody else does, neck, wing tips and innards get simmered into stock and used to boost gravy, and make an extra side casserole of stuffing [you can never have enough stuffing] Any body cavity fat gets pulled out and popped in the bottom of the roasting pan to render out so it gets into the basting and gravy liquid
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  #14  
Old 09-13-2010, 08:10 AM
Antigen Antigen is offline
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Gravy. Neck and giblets (minus the kidneys) get tossed into a pot with spices and stuff to simmer while the turkey is cooking. Take them out at the end, add turkey juice from the pan, add some cream to make it smooooooth, and then pour all over everything.

(I may be missing a step or two, I don't have my recipe book handy)

I am trying to muster up the courage to host Thanksgiving here for my in-laws. Canadian Thanksgiving at my place, then the American one at their place. Just because I'm in Maryland doesn't mean I can't have turkey in October! I'm nervous, though, because I've never done this before. I think I'll need to get a hands free headset so I can have Mom talk me through it from Montreal!
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  #15  
Old 09-13-2010, 08:38 AM
kayaker kayaker is online now
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I just visited the local turkey farm, as a matter of fact. I purchased 10 pounds of turkey livers for around eighty cents a pound. I bag up about three livers to a bag and freeze most of them. I toss a pound or so into boiling water and cook them. They are dog treats.
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  #16  
Old 09-13-2010, 10:47 AM
Lynn Bodoni Lynn Bodoni is offline
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Quote:
Any body cavity fat gets pulled out and popped in the bottom of the roasting pan to render out so it gets into the basting and gravy liquid
Dice that fat up with some herbs (especially rosemary and sage), loosen the skin on the breast, and slide the seasoned fat between the breast and the skin. This way, the breast is pretty much self basting, and it's somewhat protected from overcooking.
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  #17  
Old 09-13-2010, 10:59 AM
Chefguy Chefguy is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lynn Bodoni View Post
Quote:
Any body cavity fat gets pulled out and popped in the bottom of the roasting pan to render out so it gets into the basting and gravy liquid
Dice that fat up with some herbs (especially rosemary and sage), loosen the skin on the breast, and slide the seasoned fat between the breast and the skin. This way, the breast is pretty much self basting, and it's somewhat protected from overcooking.
I usually saturate a piece of cheesecloth with oil and butter and lay over the breast, and tent it with foil, periodically basting it with drippings to keep it moist. Helps with the overcooking issue.
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  #18  
Old 09-13-2010, 11:15 AM
aruvqan aruvqan is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lynn Bodoni View Post
Quote:
Any body cavity fat gets pulled out and popped in the bottom of the roasting pan to render out so it gets into the basting and gravy liquid
Dice that fat up with some herbs (especially rosemary and sage), loosen the skin on the breast, and slide the seasoned fat between the breast and the skin. This way, the breast is pretty much self basting, and it's somewhat protected from overcooking.
Breast down first, then breast up, not an issue =)
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  #19  
Old 09-13-2010, 11:17 AM
Surly Chick Surly Chick is offline
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Nuke 'em and feed them to the dog!
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  #20  
Old 09-13-2010, 11:40 AM
redtail23 redtail23 is offline
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Stock for the gravy, as above. I don't add the giblets themselves to the gravy, although some do.
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  #21  
Old 09-13-2010, 11:48 AM
MLS MLS is offline
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Except for the liver, eat 'em! They need long cooking so I do simmer them with the neck and some celery & herbs first, and then use that stock for the gravy. The liver is thrown out or cooked for any animals in the house that like it, which currently is zero.
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  #22  
Old 09-13-2010, 11:57 AM
Dr. Rieux Dr. Rieux is offline
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Reminds me of an old Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers Thanksgiving strip.

Frankliin: Pretty good turkey. What did you stuff it with?
Fat Freddy: Stuff it? It wasn't empty.
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  #23  
Old 09-13-2010, 12:51 PM
Le Ministre de l'au-delà Le Ministre de l'au-delà is offline
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Ever read 'Portnoy's Complaint'?

My Dad used to just fry them up and eat them in a sandwich, which completely horrified the rest of us. My Brother in Law feeds them to the dogs. Cajun-style Blackened Chicken Livers are great, but other than that, I've never found any use for them.
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Old 09-13-2010, 12:52 PM
bobkitty bobkitty is offline
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Celery, onions, butter, and liver into a frying pan, then added to a bunch o'ingredients for stuffing. Everything else goes to the puppies, who love, love, love, LOVE when I cook for Thanksgiving.
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  #25  
Old 09-13-2010, 12:54 PM
Lynn Bodoni Lynn Bodoni is offline
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Quote:
I usually saturate a piece of cheesecloth with oil and butter and lay over the breast, and tent it with foil, periodically basting it with drippings to keep it moist. Helps with the overcooking issue.
Most of the time I only cook a turkey breast, so I'll try this next time. Even if I baste the breast, it sometimes gets too dry.

How do you wash the cheesecloth? I was thinking that I'd probably have to rinse it out in hot water, and then throw it in with the bleachable whites.
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  #26  
Old 09-13-2010, 01:10 PM
hogarth hogarth is offline
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My wife eats them. Avian organ meats aren't unusual in Chinese cuisine.
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Old 09-13-2010, 01:15 PM
elfkin477 elfkin477 is offline
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We leave them outside, far from the house, for the bears. But not in the roasting pan any more, not since one stole it (don't worry, we followed the paw prints to find it, so it's not out there still).
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  #28  
Old 09-13-2010, 01:15 PM
Chefguy Chefguy is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lynn Bodoni View Post
Quote:
I usually saturate a piece of cheesecloth with oil and butter and lay over the breast, and tent it with foil, periodically basting it with drippings to keep it moist. Helps with the overcooking issue.
Most of the time I only cook a turkey breast, so I'll try this next time. Even if I baste the breast, it sometimes gets too dry.

How do you wash the cheesecloth? I was thinking that I'd probably have to rinse it out in hot water, and then throw it in with the bleachable whites.
I throw it out. You can buy a huge amount of the stuff very cheaply. For just a turkey breast, you might try doing it on the BBQ, or possibly braising it. I've never done just a turkey breast by itself.
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  #29  
Old 09-13-2010, 01:36 PM
muldoonthief muldoonthief is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr. Rieux View Post
Reminds me of an old Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers Thanksgiving strip.

Frankliin: Pretty good turkey. What did you stuff it with?
Fat Freddy: Stuff it? It wasn't empty.
Isn't that the one where he kills the turkey humanely - "I gave it an overdose of reds."
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  #30  
Old 09-13-2010, 02:06 PM
TriPolar TriPolar is offline
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Originally Posted by Lynn Bodoni View Post
Quote:
Any body cavity fat gets pulled out and popped in the bottom of the roasting pan to render out so it gets into the basting and gravy liquid
Dice that fat up with some herbs (especially rosemary and sage), loosen the skin on the breast, and slide the seasoned fat between the breast and the skin. This way, the breast is pretty much self basting, and it's somewhat protected from overcooking.
Make a sausage meat out of anything you like, with herbs and some bread crumbs, and rendered duck fat if you have it. Saturate with cream, and stuff everywhere under the skin (except the back). Use a smooth spoon to help seperate the skin to get back under the legs and wings. Yell 'help help it's still alive' while your hand is shoved up under the skin. Then wiggle a leg when they turn to look. Cook on one side for a while, then the other, then upright to finish. Use the cheesecloth with olive oil to get a fabulous looking golden brown skin. Stuff the cavity after cooking or it will take too long.
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  #31  
Old 09-13-2010, 02:46 PM
otternell otternell is offline
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My mom used to cook the gizzard separately (and let the family, except me - yuck, fight over it) and then squish up the liver and put it in the stuffing. Her stuffing beats my in-laws by a mile, but they are cooking for vegetarians as well, so no meat products in the stuffing, and nothing gets stuffed with it.
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  #32  
Old 09-13-2010, 02:56 PM
Shodan Shodan is online now
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My heart breaks at the idea of giving the liver to the dog. Or indeed, any of the giblets. They all go into the stock pot, along with the neck and all the bones (which I remove before roasting, except for wings and drumsticks). All the meat off the bones, the simmered giblets, and the browned liver, are chopped up for the stuffing.

Turkey is too nummy to waste anything.

I used to put them into the gravy, but that's too lumpy.

Darn, now I'm hungry for turkey.

Regards,
Shodan
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  #33  
Old 09-13-2010, 03:23 PM
TriPolar TriPolar is offline
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Originally Posted by Shodan View Post
My heart breaks at the idea of giving the liver to the dog. Or indeed, any of the giblets. They all go into the stock pot, along with the neck and all the bones (which I remove before roasting, except for wings and drumsticks). All the meat off the bones, the simmered giblets, and the browned liver, are chopped up for the stuffing.

Turkey is too nummy to waste anything.

I used to put them into the gravy, but that's too lumpy.

Darn, now I'm hungry for turkey.

Regards,
Shodan
Me too. What was this thread about? Oh yeah, turkey giblets. What to do with them? Eat them of course.

Last edited by TriPolar; 09-13-2010 at 03:24 PM..
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  #34  
Old 09-13-2010, 04:00 PM
kevja kevja is offline
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I've cooked three turkeys in my life. The giblets were removed and tossed into the garbage.
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