We raise the following turkeys that you can choose from for your Thanksgiving & Christmas birds:
Broad Breasted - Between 13-18 lbs - $3.50/lb
- Broad Breasted White - every commercial bird you'll find available in the grocery store for thanksgiving. This is the most commonly produced thanksgiving turkey.
- Broad Breasted Bronze - close to the BBW in size, but are a little slower growing and have a little more intense flavor.
Heritage Breeds - Between 10 to 14 lbs - $3.50/lb
- Bourbon Red - Originated in the late 1800's in Bourbon, KY and was an important variety through the 1930's & 1940's until it's decline with the adoption of the broad breasted white.
- Blue Slate - Origins aren't as clear on where this variety was developed. First mentioned in literature in the early 1800's and recognized by the American Poultry Association in 1874.
If you want unmatched taste, the heritage breeds are exceptional They are slower growing and more expensive to raise, and that is why they have been replaced with the faster growing BB varieties. Both of these heritage turkeys we raise are on the "threatened species" list, so by consuming these birds, you are helping to sustain the breeding population of these birds, and in turn are ensuring their continued existence. Our heritage breed turkeys are closely related to the Eastern Turkey which you see in the wild around here. They are a more streamlined bird which is much slower growing than the modern engineered broad breasted turkey. These birds in turn, develop a much richer flavor with less fat, many chefs say they are more flavorful thanks to the fat that comes with growing more slowly, and the meat is higher in CLAs (naturally occurring fatty acids). These birds will have more overall dark meat along with a slightly sturdier texture, and deep, gamey flavor. This is what a pilgrim’s turkey would have tasted like.
Things to note:
Heritage breeds must be treated differently from your everyday Butterball.
First off, farm-fresh turkeys are not injected with salt, as many industrially produced turkeys are. Second, pastured birds move around more than confined turkeys, so they have more dark meat. Third, they grow more slowly, giving them more time to develop flavorful meat. They tend to be smaller and therefore cook faster than industrial turkeys. Chef Beau Vestal of New Rivers in Providence, RI notes, “The main key that most people miss is brine, brine, brine!” LocalHarvest.org recommends cooking heritage turkeys more quickly at a higher temperature, rather than slow-roasting at a lower temperature, to prevent the meat from drying out. More advice at http://www.localharvest.org/features/cooking-turkeys.jsp
- Broad Breasted turkeys carry about 70% of their weight in the breast
- Heritage breeds carry their weight 50/50. These birds all dark meat. Even the breasts.
- Cooking heritage breeds are different than the normal commercial bird. Heritage breeds are leaner and don't have as much fat, so if cooked incorrectly, they could dry out. The key is to brine them for 24 hours and then to cook them slow. Search the internet for tips on cooking a heritage breed turkey (I will try to link over some recipes as I find them)
Limited supply, so make sure you reserve yours today!
Contact us now to reserve your 2018 Thanksgiving turkey. We also sell live turkeys of all four breeds, so if you are interested in day old, or full grown, contact us for availability