Saturday, November 29, 2008

Organic/Natural- Heritage Bourben Red Turkey Information

I had to opportunity to cook a totally organic meal for my extended Lawng Island family this Thanksgiving that included cooking a local Griggstown natural variety of bird for the main course. I am exstatic about how wonderful it all came out, but first wanted to share some history on this very tasty and moist creature (out of the oven). We all felt the meat was much moister than the white breed, and did not have a game taste, but a rich flavor that was complimented by my mushroom balsamic gravy. I felt as if I could have left that bird in the oven for days and it was still so juicy!

The Bourbon Red is a breed of domestic turkey named for its unique reddish plumage and for Bourbon County, Kentucky. Mature Bourbon Red toms weigh 33 pounds (15 kilos), and mature hens weigh 18 pounds (8.2 kilos). Bourdon Reds slaughtered at market weight are 16 pounds (7.25 kilos) in toms and 10 pounds (4.5 kilos) in hens. The breed's feathers are a dark chestnut base color, with white tails and flight feathers.

In the past, the breed has alternatively been called Kentucky Reds and Bourbon Butternuts. The bird originated in Kentucky and Pennsylvania in the late 1800s, and was created by crossing Buff, Standard Bronze, and White Holland turkeys. It was first recognized as turkey variety by the American Poultry Association in 1909.

Photos and recipes will be posted Sunday we have fallen under a mysterious spell and lure of the Northfork wineries...