- 2 T. butter
- 5-6 slices bacon, cut into 1-inch pieces (I used pre-cooked)
- 1 cup carrots, roughly chopped
- 1 cup celery, roughly chopped
- 1 large onion, cut into large chunks
- 6 cups chicken and/or turkey stock (plus more, plan on about 8 cups to be safe, or two cartons)
- 1 T. whole peppercorns, optional (I like a peppery gravy, so I decided to add it to the starter as well. However, I recommend waiting to add the salt until you make the gravy or the end result may be too salty.)
3. Add the stock and peppercorns, if using. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low and allow to simmer, uncovered, for about 45 minutes.
4. Once stock is reduced by about half and a beautiful brown color, remove from heat and pour over a strainer into a 4 cup measuring cup (if you don't have one of these, get one - you will find so many uses for it!). Press the vegetables down to release all the juices.
5. Add enough chicken stock to bring the final quantity to 4 cups. Place in refrigerator uncovered until cooled, then cover and refrigerate until ready to use. Can be made up to 2 days before.