Ode to the Noble Turkey
Here is a note we received from one the recipients of a 2010 Pingree Farms Turkey
“This last week, we defrosted and carefully brined our jumbo treasure in the garage.
The brine was half salt, half sugar, whole peppercorns, bay leaves, a handful of fresh thyme, and allspice berries. Tom Turkey was carefully removed, rinsed, dried, and was stuffed with more thyme, fresh lemons, coated in butter (inside and out), onions, and covered with coarse sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper.
Tom was carefully placed in a LARGE commercial pan and roasted and basted very carefully at 300 degrees for 10 hours. What a magnificent sight! And there is nothing like the smell of freshly roasting turkey.
The big question. Was Tom Turkey Tough? All bone, no meat? Dry, perhaps?
Well, my friends, Tom was tender, juicy, and so good we scooped up the meat with our hands and shoved it in by the fist, into our gaping maws.
This is the first bird I’ve eaten in 48 years that is fresh. Organic even. Maybe free range (does a cage with hay count?). Wait. Let me put on my Birkenstocks and “Save Flipper” T-shirt. I may be drifting over to supporting organically grown poultry on the basis of juiciness and flavor. Just so you know, I don’t care if food makes me glow in the dark or causes the occasional tumor in lab rats, as long as it tastes, really, really, good.
Tom Turkey was amazing. He was a noble turkey.
So, today, I’m making a really rich turkey stock which will be further reduced into a very dark, intensely flavored stock and used to bump up the flavor in everything from rice, to soup, to gravy. Not a part has been wasted or disregarded.
Thank you for the experience. Our whole family sends our love, appreciation, and best wishes to you all today.”