Saturday, January 28, 2012

Gobble, gobble y'all-Braised Turkey Legs

I'll be honest here.  Before this recipe, I never really thought about buying turkey legs.  Sure I eat turkey on holidays and the occasional turkey sandwich, but beyond that I'd have to say I had a pretty turkey free diet.

I happened across these gams one day in Wholefoods for the criminally low price of $.89 a pound.  They looked good, so I figured why not?

This was possibly one of the happiest accidents I've ever had.  These legs were delicious, and the sauce produced was just gorgeous.  So rich, complex, and velvety smooth.  Seriously though, this recipe is definitely one of the best I've ever made.  So the next time you're cruising the poultry section at your local grocer, take a break from chicken and give these over sized drumsticks a try.

Braised Turkey Legs


2 turkey drumsticks
1 medium yellow onion, diced
3 small celery stalks, small chopped
3 small carrots, small chopped
1 tbsp tomato paste
8 cups liquid (either stock or water)
1 vegetable bouillon cube
5 sprigs thyme, leaves only
5 sage leaves, roughly chopped
1 bay leaf
1 tsp red pepper flakes
1 tbsp softened butter
1 tbsp flour


1.  Preheat the oven to 350F.  In a large dutch oven or other oven safe pot, heat up the oil over medium high heat.  Salt and pepper the drumsticks and then brown on both sides, about 4 minutes a side.  Once browned, remove from pot and set aside.  
2.  Next add the carrots, onions, and celery to the pot.  Stir and let cook until slightly softened, about 7 minutes.  Next add the garlic and cook an additional minute or so, until fragrant.  Move all the vegetables away from the center of the pot and add the tomato paste, smearing on the bottom of the pot to cook, and then stir in with the vegetables; season with a pinch or two of salt.
3.  Using a little liquid and a wooden spoon, deglaze the pot.  Return the drumsticks and add liquid until they are just about covered.  Add all of the remaining ingredients to the pot and bring to a boil.  Once at a boil, turn the stove off and place the lid on the pot.  Place in oven for 2 hours.
4.  Remove the pot from the oven and place on the stove.  Remove the turkey legs (the meat should be fall off the bone tender) and set aside.  Crank the heat up and bring the liquid to a boil.  Mix the softened butter and flour together to form a paste.  Now add the paste a little at a time to the liquid, stirring to make sure each addition is well combined.  Continue to boil until sauce has reduced to desired consistency.  I took mine down pretty far and it was rich, complex, velvety perfection. *If you’d like use a stick blender to puree the remaining vegetables.  I didn’t do it this time because I thought of it after the fact.  I will definitely try this the next time.

 Boiling on top of the stove before going in to the oven.


  1. Great looking turkey legs. How many does this feed?

    1. Hi James, this recipe will feed 4-5 depending on the sides and the individuals appetites. Thanks for reading!

  2. I'm so with you, I hardly ever eat turkey. Also, they look amazing! I will definitely have to give this a try!

    1. Hi Melissa, you really should- they are so tasty. Thanks for commenting!


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