In the world of culinary delights, sauces and gravies are the unsung heroes that elevate a dish from good to great. When it comes to poultry, chicken and turkey gravies and sauces play a vital role in enhancing flavours, adding moisture, and bringing a dish to life. While many of these savoury concoctions are closely guarded secrets of renowned chefs, we’re about to let you in on a few of their best-kept sauce secrets. Get ready to dive into the saucy world of signature chicken and turkey gravies that have diners coming back for more.
Velouté Sauce: The French Elegance
Our first stop on this saucy journey is the classic Velouté sauce. This French mother sauce is a true masterpiece and a favourite among chefs for its versatility. It forms the base for many chicken and turkey gravies, and it’s made by thickening a white stock with a roux (a mixture of fat and flour).
Chefs often enrich Velouté sauce with various ingredients to create unique flavours. For chicken, they might add herbs, white wine, and cream, resulting in a luscious chicken Velouté. When turkey is the star, mushrooms and a hint of thyme can transform the sauce into a delightful turkey version.
Béchamel Sauce: The Creamy Dream
Béchamel sauce, another French creation, is a velvety white sauce made from a roux and milk. It’s the canvas for countless delicious variations.
For a chicken twist, chefs might add Dijon mustard, Parmesan cheese, and a dash of lemon juice to create a creamy, tangy sauce that pairs perfectly with chicken cutlets.
When turkey is on the menu, incorporating sage, roasted garlic, and a touch of nutmeg can turn this simple sauce into a harmonious partner for your roasted or grilled turkey dishes.
Hollandaise Sauce: The Luxurious Drizzle
Hollandaise sauce is the epitome of indulgence, known for its silky texture and rich, buttery flavour. Traditionally served with eggs Benedict, this sauce can do wonders for poultry as well.
To make a chicken-friendly Hollandaise, chefs infuse it with tarragon and lemon zest. The result? A refreshing, herbaceous sauce that beautifully complements grilled or poached chicken breasts.
For turkey lovers, a twist on classic Hollandaise includes a hint of cranberry reduction, adding a burst of tangy sweetness that enhances the roasted turkey’s flavour.
Red-Eye Gravy: The Southern Charm
Red-eye gravy is a southern specialty known for its unique flavour profile. It’s typically made from the drippings of pan-fried country ham, coffee, and water. The result is a sauce that’s bold, savory, and slightly bitter, perfect for drizzling over fried chicken.
For a turkey twist, chefs might prepare a red-eye gravy with turkey bacon and a touch of maple syrup. This variation offers a sweet and smoky contrast to the tender turkey, making it a favourite among diners craving something a bit different.
Mole Sauce: The Mexican Magic
Mole is a complex and flavourful Mexican sauce that varies in ingredients depending on the region. Often referred to as the “national dish of Mexico,” it’s a rich blend of spices, chocolate, and chilies.
For chicken, chefs may create a Mole Poblano, using a combination of chilies, chocolate, and chicken broth to create a sauce that’s savoury, sweet, and slightly spicy. This pairs wonderfully with grilled chicken.
Turkey Mole incorporates the same rich blend of flavours, elevating turkey dishes to a new level of complexity and deliciousness.
Coconut Curry Sauce: The Exotic Twist
For a more exotic flavour experience, coconut curry sauce is a favourite among those who appreciate the vibrant and bold flavours of Southeast Asia.
Incorporating chicken into a coconut curry sauce results in a dish that’s creamy, aromatic, and filled with the warmth of spices like cumin, coriander, and turmeric.
For turkey lovers, coconut curry sauce provides an exciting departure from traditional turkey gravies. The combination of tender turkey meat with a fragrant coconut broth is nothing short of an exotic adventure.
These signature chicken and turkey gravies and sauces represent just a fraction of the tantalizing options available to adventurous chefs and food enthusiasts. The beauty of these sauces is that they not only enhance the taste of poultry but also provide a delightful opportunity for culinary exploration. So, the next time you’re in a restaurant, savouring a perfectly sauced dish, remember that behind each remarkable flavour is a chef’s secret recipe, a hint of magic that makes every bite unforgettable.
Tomato Ketchup: The All-American Classic
No exploration of signature sauces and gravies would be complete without a nod to the all-American classic: tomato ketchup. While it’s often associated with burgers and fries, ketchup can also be a surprisingly delightful addition to chicken and turkey dishes. Our absolute favourite will always be Heinz tomato ketchup!
For chicken, chefs may create a tangy and sweet tomato ketchup glaze. When brushed over grilled or roasted chicken, it adds a zesty punch that complements the savoury meat beautifully.
When it comes to turkey, ketchup can be transformed into a delectable barbecue-style sauce. Infused with a blend of spices, brown sugar, and a hint of smokiness, this sauce can take your roasted turkey to a whole new level.
Tomato ketchup’s versatility knows no bounds, and it’s the go-to sauce for those looking to add a touch of familiar comfort to their poultry dishes, making it an integral part of the chef’s repertoire.