Written By Melkorka on December 31, 2013
Spring Lake Farm specializes in 100% grass-fed beef, lamb and pastured pork. We offer pasture-raised meats free of antibiotics and artificial hormones. Our lamb and beef are raised and finished exclusively on grasses from our farm.Read More »
Turkey is a regal American bird that has a fascinating history. Like cows, turkeys are well-suited to the American environment. They are tough, intelligent and scrappy, which are all traits that serve farm animals well […]Read More »
Today ducklings and chicks arrived, and tomorrow baby turkeys will be arriving!Read More »
Delivery is most cost effective if we can organize a large group of orders together and we love working with buying groups. For example, Meatshare has been fabulous to us. We also take personal orders […]Read More »
I read somewhere that the Aztecs used duck fat as their primary cooking fat; they didn’t have olives or cow’s creamRead More »
Haying is central to Spring Lake Farm’s operation. In fact, we are experts at it.Read More »
Roasted Sirloin Tip Roast With Garlic and Thyme
An adventurous spirit is possibly the best ingredient when learning toRead More »
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Turkey is a regal American bird that has a fascinating history. Like cows, turkeys are well-suited to the American environment. They are tough, intelligent and scrappy, which are all traits that serve farm animals well in our fertile but rugged land. The old fashioned way of raising turkeys in many ways works best, but you need a large area, or as my Irish husband says, a “home place” surrounded by fields. If it all works out well, they forage all day eating grass, wild flowers and bugs from the fields and meadows, and come home at night to roost in their coop. The coop need not be mobile, as turkeys can fly, run, and jump fences. The secret is to get them to come back.
Many of the old timers in our area remember their mothers and grandmothers raising turkeys in this manner. They are almost wild and it does require a keen eye to make sure they haven’t ventured too far. Because they feast on grass and bugs all day they will be the best tasting turkey you have ever eaten: juicy and herbaceous, with a firm flesh truly bursting with flavor. You will fall in love with turkey all over again.
These turkeys had a good life, and you can taste it.
The turkeys we are offering this year were bred and hatched on our farm. My father set up an old incubator that he built years before, and put the eggs from the turkeys who were laying in early spring into it. With turkey chicks costing almost 10 dollars apiece it was a worthwhile experiment. To our delight almost all hatched!
Our turkeys aren’t pure bred, but a mix of heritage breeds: white midgets, Narragansett, Beltville, Standard bronze and red bourbon. My father thinks one of our toms (male for turkey) was most successful,so most are a mix of the Amagansett turkey. If we wanted to keep them pure we could sequester them in pairs, but the health and vigor of these turkey mutts created the BEST tasting turkey. Diet, after all, has such a big impact on flavor.
My sister gave me a first edition Joy of Cooking a while back, first published in the 1930s. It even has recipes for squirrel! Their roast turkey recipe intrigued me but it required a roaster with a lid. I omitted that part and added lard, herbs and spices, put it into a hot oven, then a lower oven heat worked wonders on the turkey.
Roasted Spring Lake Turkey
Thought I should put this in. I am a firm believer in high fat diet, can feel it on my self.
It’s been a slow spring and the grass has been taking its time. My husband and I were up for two weekends helping my parents on the farm. It was the most fun we have had in a long while and almost didn’t feel like work but we were a bit tired on the two Mondays when we started our own work week. While on the farm, we made a new paddock for the cows and calves by fencing a fallow field in and a hay field. Hopefully, the weather warms so the grass can grow. Thankfully we have enough grass, but we are certainly looking forward to more sunshine!
You may know Temma as the lady who writes all of the emails, and greets you during delivery day. She also happens to be a pretty amazing painter and her latest show opens next week. The opening is on Saturday April 27th, 3-6pm – if you attend you can meet the whole family as we celebrate her latest works. Temma’s recent paintings focus on scenes of life on the farm, from family portraits, still lifes, landscapes and lively barnyard portraits of our farm animals. You are also free to see the show during normal gallery hours, 11-6 Tuesday to Saturday from April 23rd till May 18th at the Bowery Gallery (530 West 25th st, 4th floor New York, NY 10011).
I may be biased – but I wouldn’t miss it.