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You might not have noticed, but turkeys traditionally sold in stores these days are now made of white meat primarily. Over the years, these livestock have been bred and injected with antibiotics specifically to develop them faster, and contain more of the lighter meat many individuals have come to enjoy.
Heritage turkeys are greatly becoming a popular alternative to the chemically bred turkeys stuffing store shelves. The term heritage incorporates a number of turkey breeds, including Black, Bourbon Red, Royal Palm, Slate and many more. These breeds can trace their ancestral roots back 100+ of years, and are raised as closely to wild turkeys as possible.
Clear of chemicals and antibiotics, these birds appear 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 sizable increase to common, predominately white options. With the reduction in chemicals and increase in dark meat also brings you a surge in price. While you may get a supermarket turkey costing about $1 per pound, heritage turkeys may cost you up to $7 per single pound.
Considering you should get one to one and a half pounds of turkey per individual, this can result a very costly supper. If you possibly can afford the price leap, then buy heritage turkey cause it can be ideal for you.
If you like dark meat, and enjoy the taste of other wild, game-y tasting birds, then the heritage turkey is simply perfect for you.
The Various Kinds Of Turkeys To Know About
Fresh Turkeys: By simply definition, a fresh turkey has never been frozen under a specific temperature, but that does not mean it was never frozen at all. Turkeys can be branded as fresh if they have never been cooled below 26 degrees F.
To note, because fresh turkeys may still be retained at very low temps, they may have just been stored at farms or markets for weeks, at times months, before being sold. Always ask when your turkey was butchered to be sure the freshest possible bird.
Frozen Turkeys: A turkey will be marked as frozen if it has been chilled below zero degrees F. Frozen turkeys are frequently the easiest, most economical option found at various supermarkets, though they may 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 indeed 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 then prepared according to kosher principals, 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 turkey grew up. Natural turkeys are merely kept unseasoned, basted or shaded before being sold. Be sure to remember that before paying more for a turkey with this kind of label.
Organic Turkeys: These birds are raised with specifically designated feed, and without the added chemicals. While many consumers prefer the idea of an organic turkey, this label will not necessarily affect the flavor or texture of the bird.
Free Range Turkeys: This kind is often a deceptive term, as free range does not always suggest the bird was raised outdoors or even allowed most of its time outdoors. A farmer may label its turkeys ‘free range’ provided that the birds were allowed a few minutes per day of outdoor time – a standard that barely influences taste or quality.