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You may not have noticed, but turkeys traditionally sold in stores today are made of primarily white meat. Over the past years, these livestock have been bred (and injected with antibiotics) specifically to develop them quicker, and have more of the lighter meat a lot of Americans have come to enjoy.
Heritage turkeys are rapidly getting to be a chosen alternative to the chemically altered turkeys stuffing store shelves. The term heritage incorporates a variety turkey breeds, including Black, Bourbon Red, Royal Palm, Slate and more. These breeds can trace their roots back hundreds of years, and are kept as closely to wild turkeys as possible.
Clear of chemicals and antibiotics, these birds look and taste in a different way from modern store-bought turkeys, and more often have a white to dark meat ratio closer to 50/50, a substantial increase to common, predominately white options. With the decrease in chemicals and increase in dark meat also brings you an increase in price. While you can typically find a supermarket turkey for about $1 per pound, heritage turkeys can cost a buyer up to $7 every pound.
Considering you should get one to one and a half pounds of turkey per person, this may make a very expensive dinner. If you possibly can afford the price leap, then buy heritage turkey cause it can be right for you.
If perhaps you like dark meat, and like the taste of other untamed, game-y tasting birds, the heritage turkey is exquisite for you.
The Various Types Of Turkeys To Know About
Fresh Turkeys: By simply definition, a fresh turkey has not been frozen under a specific temperature, but that does not mean it was never frozen at all. Turkeys can be marked as fresh if they’ve never been cooled below 26 degrees F.
To note, because fresh turkeys may still be stored at very low temps, they may have just been stored at farms or storages for weeks, at times months, before being sold. Usually ask when your turkey was butchered to be sure the freshest possible turkey.
Frozen Turkeys: A turkey will be labelled as frozen if it has been kept below zero degrees F. Frozen turkeys are mostly the easiest, most economical option found at many supermarkets, though they often lose some of the bird’s natural juices, and can be tougher to chew.
Not Recently Frozen Turkeys: This term may easily cause confusion, and means that the turkey was kept below 26 degrees F, so it won’t be referred to as “fresh”, but above 0 degrees F, so it does not need to be labelled “frozen”.
Kosher Turkeys: Kosher turkeys are raised on grain, and are not given chemical stimulants. Allowed to graze freely, these turkeys are kept, killed and prepared according to kosher regulations, with a salt brine soak. This kind of soak gives kosher turkeys a distinctive flavor, and increases the bird’s overall weight, which might increase price.
Natural Turkeys: Surprisingly, this label does not refer on how the bird grew up. Natural turkeys are merely left unseasoned, basted or coloured before being sold. Be sure to remember that before paying more for a turkey with this label.
Organic Turkeys: These birds are kept with specifically designated feed, and without the added chemicals. Whilst many consumers prefer the idea of an organic and natural turkey, this label does not necessarily affect the flavor or texture of the turkey.
Free Range Turkeys: This kind is often a deceptive term, as free range does not always mean the bird was raised outdoors or even allowed most of its time outdoors. A farm can label its turkeys ‘free range’ provided that the birds were allowed several minutes per day of outdoor time – a standard that barely affects taste or quality.