Spicy Fried Turkey with Hot Honey Gravy

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Spicy Fried Turkey with Hot Honey Gravy
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  • 6 tablespoons butter
  • 6 tablespoons flour
  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 1 - 3 tablespoons hot sauce, such as Tabasco


  • 1 fresh or thawed frozen turkey (12 to 14 lbs.), at room temperature, patted dry
  • 3 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon herbes de Provence
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons celery salt
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne (optional)
  • 3 cups flour
  • 3/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 2 cups buttermilk
  • 2 tablespoons hot sauce, such as Tabasco
  • Peanut or vegetable oil, for frying


For the gravy, in a large lidded saucepan, melt the butter over medium-high heat. Add the flour; whisk until light golden, 3 to 5 minutes. Whisk in the stock, honey and 1 to 3 tbsp. hot sauce; bring to a boil over high. Reduce the heat to medium; simmer, whisking often, until thickened, about 10 minutes. Cover; remove from the heat.

For the turkey, place the bird on a cutting board, breast side down, with the legs toward you. Using kitchen shears, cut along each side of the backbone; remove. Cut off the wing tips. (Reserve the backbone and wing tips for stock, if desired.) Using your hands, bend the legs away from the bird, then cut away with the shears. Using a large knife, separate the thighs from the drumsticks. Halve the breast lengthwise into 2 pieces. Halve those pieces crosswise, creating 4 breast pieces. Cut off the wings, then cut each wing at the joint into 2 pieces.

In a small bowl, whisk the salt, herbes de Provence, onion powder, celery salt, cayenne and 1 tbsp. pepper; sprinkle all over the turkey pieces. For best flavor, cover and chill up to 1 day. Before cooking, let stand 1 hour at room temperature.

In a large bowl, whisk the flour, cornstarch and paprika. In another large bowl, whisk the buttermilk and 2 tbsp. hot sauce.

Preheat the oven to 200 degrees . Pour about 1 1/2 inches of oil into a large pot. Heat over medium-high until a deep-fry thermometer registers 350 degrees . Work in batches in the following order: wing pieces, legs, thighs and breast halves. In that order, toss the turkey parts in the flour mixture, then the buttermilk mixture, then in the flour mixture again, turning to coat. Carefully add to the pot and fry until golden brown and an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest parts of the pieces (not touching bone) registers 165 degrees , about 9 minutes for the wings, about 16 minutes for the legs and thighs and about 15 minutes for the breasts. (Return the oil to 350 degrees between batches.) As you fry, transfer the turkey pieces to a wire rack set inside a rimmed baking sheet; keep warm in the oven. Rewarm the gravy and serve with the turkey.