With Thanksgiving just past, I thought it would be a good time to talk "turkey"
We started the summer with 5 turkeys. I do not have great luck raising turkeys. This was my last try at raising a flock.
We had two survive to the "juvie" stage. At that point I actually named them and decided since we had both a hen and a tom, that we would not butcher them, but raise them as a breeding pair. The Tom's name was Stuffing, and the Hen was Cranberry.
Unfortunately, Cranberry only lived another 2 month (ironically right about the time she should start laying) So then we only had Stuffing. So the plan changed again and Stuffing would be raised for meat.
He grew and grew. In March he weighed 48 pounds and stood to my waist. He did not like the guys and would aggressively gobble and posture when he saw them. He was relatively afraid of me (as I would grab his head every time I walked into the coop to remind him who was the boss) I was hoping to keep this big guy around until my parents got back from their winter home, but then, he decided that he was now the boss of me and started attacking my bootlaces and feet.
The weekend before we to the processor he was about 10 pounds heavier (58). When he came back from "camp" he was definitely a bit more manageable. Ha! They did split him in half as he wouldn't fit into the oven as a whole bird. We ended up with two 22 pound halves!!!
I've never cooked a half bird, so this was going to be interesting. He was actually bigger than the whole birds from the store. I was afraid he was going to be tough with all the chasing he did around the farm. I cooked him in one of those plastic cooking bags and he turned out surprisingly tender. The dark meat was darker than any I've ever seen.
So even with him being a half, we still have tons of leftovers (with only 3 of us...and a 22 pound bird). I thought I might share a new recipe for leftover turkey that we just tried this evening and loved it!!
Three Cheese Turkey Tetrazzini
- 7 oz box of spaghetti broken and cooked (I prefer linguine noodles)
- 2 cups of chopped up leftover turkey
- 2-4 oz of butter or olive oil
- 1 small onion
- Garlic Salt
- Chopped parsley
- 12 oz package of fresh mushrooms
- 1/4 cup flour
- 2 cups of leftover turkey gravy (or a can of cream of mushroom soup)
- 1 cup milk.
- 1-2 cups of shredded mozzarella cheese
- 1 cup of shredded cheddar
- 1/2 Parmesan cheese
Cook spaghetti noodles, and drain. Put in an oiled (baking spray) 9X13 casserole dish. Sprinkle with mozzarella cheese. Set aside.
Melt butter (or use oil) in a frying pan, cook onions until translucent. Add the garlic salt, parsley and mushrooms. Cook until mushrooms wilt. Sprinkle flour over mixture and stir. Add gravy (or can of soup) and milk and whisk. Add turkey and stir. Pour mixture over the noodles. Sprinkle with the rest of the cheeses (I totally didn't measure the cheese, just used what I had on hand) and another dash of garlic salt. Bake in 350* oven for 25 minutes (or until bubbly)