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Old 11-23-2011, 08:56 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by Aunt Bea View Post
How do you know if you are getting a "better" turkey?

Over the years I have had turkeys that grew up in good neighborhoods and in bad neighborhoods. They all tasted about the same.

I remember Julia Child commenting that she thought a frozen turkey was a safer bet than a "fresh" turkey because the frozen one was processed under optimal conditions and the so called fresh turkeys were processed far in advance of being used due to the high holiday demand.
I agree. Frozen turkeys are likely killed, processed and frozen the same day. "Fresh turkeys" could be weeks old by the time you get them (I've worked in grocery stores for about 18 years).

I've had lots of store brand, butterball and "fresh" turkeys and to be honest I've never seen a difference between any of them. Maybe the Butterball had a bit more flavor, but that's about it.

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Old 11-25-2011, 10:55 AM   #22
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Originally Posted by CWS4322 View Post
The best turkeys I ever cooked were free-range, fresh, organic ones. But, they were expensive and as the "season" got closer to Christmas, the options for a small turkey were limited to between 20-22 lb. That, is not, IMO, a "small" turkey, but then, my friend whose husband did not specify weight when he ordered theirs, was a bit challenged to figure out how to roast a 48-lb turkey...and, according to her description, "it was as if she had a toddler crammed in her fridge" (first time "turkey" growers often end up with oversized birds the first year). The solution was to take it out to the workshop and cut it up using the band saw...
Aother option for an insanely large turkey is to roast it in a drum, also known as Garbage Can Turkey. A Friend of mine told me how he did one. He took a 50 gallon drum that was cleaned out for the purpose, and removed the bottom of the drum (when it was standing upright). He then created a device for suspending the turkey half way up the drum by using a cross of metal that was placed in notches on the top rim. A chain was attached to the cross, with a piece of steel rod used to hold the trussed turkey. Charcoal is then placed all around the bottom, and on a grate inside the drum bottom. The drum lid is than place on top, with more lit charcoal placed on the lid. If effect, he created a very large barbecue/smoker/dutch oven. I would imagine that the drum cooker could suspend a metal basket for hams, large roasts, a bunch of chickens, etc. Heat is controlled by adding or removing charcoal briquettes as needed. A simple thermometer could be inserted it's stem through a hole in the side of the drum to monitor the cooking temp.,

It sounded like a very effective cooker to make.

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Old 11-25-2011, 11:44 AM   #23
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Today is the day you go to the supermarket and grab up all the turkey that didn't get sold at the beginning of the week for half price, or less!

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