Less than a week before, I had started the trip and took a Thanksgiving Turkey Butcher class at Nature’s Harmony Farms. Since then I have been working ridiculous hours on a movie my wife is decorating, “Neighborhood Watch”. The set I was working on is supposed to be a Costco, but as it often goes it was “easier” to create our own Costco than film in a real one. I have always had my issues with the massiveness and consumer-glut that is Costco and I have on more than one occasion left a full cart and retreated because the place freaks me out so. And yet it was my charge to help make this huge empty warehouse look like the real thing.
By the time I arrived the lion’s share had been done but I was up to my elbows in its madness, right up until late Saturday afternoon when I started preparing the turkey that had been sitting in our fridge for the previous week waiting…
Waiting for me to figure out what we were going to do with it.
What? What, say what?
I signed up for the class weeks before because we were planning to be with family on the turkey day. Because of aforementioned job, that plan got high jacked and we ended up going to a friend’s house for the day, a friend who already had a bird, and who, by the way made an incredible spread of food. But the point is/was my beloved turkey had no home.
As the days passed and I raced around Atlanta trying to help make a non-Costco warehouse into a Costco, I would try to think of what to do with this amazing corpse in my fridge, something that would suit its beauty and justify(at least in my mind) it’s death and evisceration at my hands.
Now I didn’t know if I “knew” them or had ever met any of them before, but they were “burners” which means we would be more than welcomed.
Big asterisk here, as in, there are several blog posts related and growing from this “burner” thing but not here and not now.
To sum up why and what I have been babbling about for the last few paragraphs,( I sadly make light of my writing and not getting to the point because of how we look at words, writing, etc. these days. After reviewing “Oliver Twist” as part of Skye’s home school adventure, I remember how lovely words and lengthy exposition can be, not that I am in anyway comparing myself to Dickens, except perhaps using a lot of words to get from point A to point B, and remembering that the journey truly is the more important than the destination)
I got home racing and started the turkey too late and with not all the necessary stuff, all I was missing really was parchment paper which was not something I got.
So I’m looking at my time, which if I were to believe Tim (from Nature’s Harmony) is more than sufficient, but I am a skeptic, a non-believer as my default setting and I can’t believe that this big friggin’ beast taking up half of my fridge can cook in a tad more than 2 hours.
People spend a week figuring out time, the brining and cooking, so that 3 days out might be sufficient and here I am 4 hours from wanting to be somewhere, 30 minutes away with a 15-lb hulk of poultry not in the oven.
I was f---ked for lack of a better term.
Cindy got home with the meat thermometer, one of the “non-essentials” I forwent and I grabbed it from her and jammed it in the thigh of the obviously undercooked bird. It was done. I mean, in theory, I mean according to this new-fangled meat thermometer. It looked done. It smelled done, but it couldn’t be done, not in the short time I cooked it.
Or it could be done and because I cooked it at such a high heat, it would be dry and inedible. Screw it, I didn’t even know these people. If it was unfit, well let’s just say you get what you pay for.
It was amazing. Never had I had such a succulent turkey. I am not saying this to be boastful or anything of that ilk. It just was. How it was, was a mystery, until I started cutting up the left-overs the morning after.
And now out of laziness and an ode to/nod to/respect for, really….back to the lazy truth of it I will just quote verbatim, “ If you’ve only ever eaten the plumped-up grocery store version of ‘turkey’, switching to heritage breeds, might surprise you in more ways than one. ….(OK not verbatim completely but..) Lastly, taste. Believe it or not, turkeys do have flavor! At least heritage breeds do. All the way through to their bones. We found it largely a waste of time to make stock from grocery birds, but with heritage turkeys, one turkey carcass seems to equal two chicken carcasses when it comes to flavoring stock”
No end in sight
I promised/threatened to end this post before I was ready, so….
As I was tearing the bird apart this morning, Tim’s words were rattling in my head, rattle is a good word given what is going on in the orb. I thought about him saying the bird was fattier. What? How could that be? …Oh you mean the bird has more fat in normal places, not that the thing is “fatter” as we would think of it.
Oh and "dark" meat, I have never encounter more flavorful dark meat and....
So much more to say and so much more on my mind.........
I have to end, I would not be OK with not acknowledging the burners, the farmers, the regular folk who don't ask for or want the spotlight, so forgive my indulgences to acknowledge them...