A few days ago, I documented
my first visit to a Pollo Vivero
, or live-kill poultry place. Well, having now had the joy of dressing and eating a freshly-killed turkey, I can absolutely state the following points: Cutting off Heads Isn't That Hard
: I thought that removing the bird's feet and head would be really difficult, but it was actually easy. I used a sturdy, German-style chef's knife, located the respective joints, and sliced away. While the legs came off in one piece (each), I had to take the neck off in two pieces. I used a paring knife and reached inside the carcass to cut it closer to the torso.Live Turkeys Don't Look Quite the Same
: My turkey's torso was longer and slightly sleeker than the Butterballs that I was used to. That having been said, it was still quite meaty, and the actual process of cooking it was very much the same (minus the pop-up timer, of course).Live Turkeys Are Yummy
: The turkey tasted more or less the same as a grocery store turkey. It was slightly more succulent, but I also chalk that up to the fact that I brined it.Live Turkeys Dry Out Easily
: Unlike store-bought turkeys, which soak in a broth solution until you unwrap them, live turkeys need to be protected from drying out. I wrapped mine in moist paper towels before brining it.Turkey Heads Are Fun
: Being somewhat perverse, I held on to the turkey head and feet so I could show them to select people. Two of my sisters got in a little bit of a tiff over who got to keep them (I'm not the only weirdo in my family), until my youngest sister claimed the artist card, stating that she wanted to draw the various parts.
I have decided that I'm definitely going to go with live poultry for Christmas. Does anybody have a good recipe for pheasant?