What do chicken farmers do when their eaters demand turkey? They get turkeys...basically big chickens, right? This is an exciting new adventure for us, and we look forward to sharing our experience in the coming months. It's a bit of a nail-biter. Raising a bird that takes a long time to grow (4 months) with little experience is a bit of investment, a bit of risk. But this year we're giving it the old college try in hopes we can round out the season a little more diverse, a little more experienced. Whether we succeed deliciously or fail miserably, we will do our best to report it here.
They came a day earlier than expected, which made for a chaotic morning with the brooder still under construction, but all 100 of our broad breasted white poults (young turkeys) arrived safe and sound. They chirped contentedly, happy to be out of the box and with quirky, loving farmers. This counts as a major turning point. Half the year is over, and these little guys (yep--all dudes or "Toms" in farmerspeak) will hang with us for the 134 days until Thanksgiving, the big sigh at the end of the season--the farmer's most anticipated, sacred holiday.
We'll be brooding them for quite a while longer than the chickens (6 to 8 weeks) before turning them out to pasture 'till mid-November to get positively juicy and flavorful as a result of eating copious amounts of grass and bugs. If your mouth's already watering (ours is even though the poults are small and fluffy), you can pre-order one from us at the farmers' market starting next week. We suspect orders will fill up quickly, so jump on the pastured poultry bandwagon early this year (everybody's doing it) and let us know you want one. If we're thinking about Thanksgiving in July you can, too.
In the meantime, enjoy the photos and stories here so you can share them with your families as you pass the cranberry and the gravy 'round the table...
A new, yet confident turkey farmer in the making...
1 year ago