Here’s Rita – the new addition to our Fin and Farm team. At the moment, she’s getting to know some our farms, so first stop last week was Holmansbridge Farm, over near Lewes at the foot of the Sussex Downs – to see the Turkey flock.
You can see from the pic, that the turkeys are free to roam in a spacious field – although the whole experience was a bit disconcerting at first for Rita, who hasn’t picked up a turkey before!
Space to roam is important for the birds to be unstressed and be allowed their natural behaviour patterns of roaming, scratching around and getting enough fresh air and exercise. In bad weather they have their barn to retreat.
Holmansbridge Farm have been rearing and preparing turkey in the same way for three generations. The turkeys are reared on the farm and fed a natural diet – no growth hormones – and since all the preparation is done on the farm, you can be sure of receiving a fine ethical local bird.
How to choose? White or Bronze?
Holmansbridge rear White or Bronze turkeys. Firstly, obviously their plumage, but otherwise it’s a matter of taste.
Bronze turkeys were originally brought to Europe from the Americas, domesticated from their wild bird species. So the Bronze varieties are gamier and darker with a juicier, meatier texture.
White turkey is the result of breeding in Europe over the last couple of centuries and has a lighter, more delicate flavour – and is the variety we are most familiar with here in Britain. It also tends to carry more breast meat, as a general rule.
However, all the birds are hand plucked and hung for around 14 days for maximum richness of flavour and texture.
What size do I need?
Our birds start at around 4kg and grow up to around 12kg. Obviously as a natural meat, the size is not exact when you buy, so you must expect to give or take some grams.
The size guide below tells you how many you can feed per kg – allowing enough leftovers for your turkey sandwiches!
- 4kg: Serves 4
- 5kg: Serves 6
- 6kg: Serves 8
- 7kg: Serves 10
- 8kg: Serves 12
- 9kg: Serves 14
- 10kg: Serves 16
- 11kg: Serves 18
- 12kg: Serves 20
How to carve?
You can make the most of your turkey and not make a mash of it, with good carving skills….
Good old Jamie Oliver, has an easy video you can see here, so you can look like a pro.
Roasting and Leftovers?
We will cover this in a separate blog as we’ve been looking at tons of amazing ways to cook a turkey – including freeing your oven by using your barbecue….
blog from Fin and Farm
Sign up for our weekly newsletter of Sussex produce: Click here >>