Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Ahhhh Turkey Time!

Is here at last!

Many, many years ago (at least twelve but not more than a thousand) the Pilgrims had the first thanksgiving. They probably served pumpkin and pecan pie with Ready Whip, turkey, stuffing, muskrat, collards, smoked fish for hors d'oeuvres - probably Lake Michigan whitefish, and Jello salad. Well, maybe not that selection exactly. But maybe?

So why DID the turkey cross the road? Don't know that, but I do know why the turkey egg crossed the road?

It was so inclined!

For my feast, I will have the largest unsold turkey, sweet potatoes, collard greens, brussels sprouts, succotash, yukon gold smashed potatoes, punkin pie (or pumpkin pie, whichever you prefer), jello salad, and smoked fish. I make my stuffing using dried bread, pork sausage, peppers, celery, onions, mushrooms, and my secret ingredient – black olives chopped from the can with the can juice. Sounds odd maybe, but it is truly wonderful.

Now, I get asked all the time “how big a turkey do I need for X many guests. What I tell people is that I do a great job of raising wonderful birds, but … maybe ask Martha Stewart. And then I tell them that I recommend they get the biggest bird possible that will still fit in their oven 'cause you need as much (many?) leftovers as possible!

I, even at this late date, still have a quantity of quality turkeys left. Mostly bigg'ns. The other thing you can do (if they have any left) is to order a T-day feast from Zingerman's
Deli just down the road from the market. They use our (Nic's and my) turkeys. AND – on the first of january, you can get a
John H. Turkey Pot Pie from said establishment down the road from Market!

Let's see, what else can I tell you? Got leftovers? Sandwiches both cold and hot with some nice thick gravy will do. Turkey salad maybe? And jook, which is a chinese stew or soup made from cooking the carcass with rice in water until it boils down to a wonderful, basically, a turkey soup. You can find various recipes online. I just saw one from the New York Times (which I think is a pretty good rag). And of course, there is always the “regular” turkey soup method where you cook the living snot out of the carcass and add veggies and spice and everything nice to it.

Recently, someone came up to me (OK, a lot of people) and said they were thinking of turkeys and thought of me. I wasn't sure if I should be offended or pleased!

So, I think I about covered all the bases here. Oh! Wait! I have to share this with you. Some years back, I got a complaint about one of my turkeys. She told me it was too moist and had too much flavor. Oh drat!

Reporting from the Ann Arbor Farmer's Market, the top turkey, John Harnois