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Is it too soon to start talking about turkey?

Is it too soon to start talking about turkey?
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  • Is it too soon to start talking about turkey?

    Post #1 - October 22nd, 2011, 9:46 pm
    Post #1 - October 22nd, 2011, 9:46 pm Post #1 - October 22nd, 2011, 9:46 pm
    I'd like to find one that's a little bit better this year. Last year we had one that my son raised. It was not quite free range as he raised them on his hobby farm in a turkey tractor. But they were pretty darn good. Unfortunately he did not raise any fowl this summer so I'm wondering where to get something similar this year. Something convenient to the far western suburbs is preferred. And if I have to drive, then heading further west would be preferable.

    Thanks!

    -hank
  • Post #2 - October 23rd, 2011, 6:07 am
    Post #2 - October 23rd, 2011, 6:07 am Post #2 - October 23rd, 2011, 6:07 am
    I've been happy with - http://www.hokaturkeys.com/
    Never order barbecue in a place that also serves quiche - Lewis Grizzard
  • Post #3 - October 23rd, 2011, 6:42 am
    Post #3 - October 23rd, 2011, 6:42 am Post #3 - October 23rd, 2011, 6:42 am
    Thanks Dave,
    I did search and that name came up in some older threads as well. Looks like it's still a good place to go. Their location is a pleasant drive from here as well so it sounds like a win on all accounts.

    thanks,
    hank
  • Post #4 - October 23rd, 2011, 7:38 am
    Post #4 - October 23rd, 2011, 7:38 am Post #4 - October 23rd, 2011, 7:38 am
    You can order fresh hola turkeys at Casey's market in Naperville. Call or stop by the meat counter.
  • Post #5 - October 23rd, 2011, 7:44 am
    Post #5 - October 23rd, 2011, 7:44 am Post #5 - October 23rd, 2011, 7:44 am
    Josef's Meats in Geneva and Ream's Market in Elburn take orders for HoKa turkeys
  • Post #6 - October 23rd, 2011, 8:00 am
    Post #6 - October 23rd, 2011, 8:00 am Post #6 - October 23rd, 2011, 8:00 am
    How about places in Chicago, especially the north side?
    "To get long" meant to make do, to make well of whatever we had; it was about having a long view, which was endurance, and a long heart, which was hope.
    - Fae Myenne Ng, Bone
  • Post #7 - October 23rd, 2011, 8:27 am
    Post #7 - October 23rd, 2011, 8:27 am Post #7 - October 23rd, 2011, 8:27 am
    The HoKa turkey locator......

    http://www.hokaturkeys.com/where%20to%20buy.htm
  • Post #8 - October 23rd, 2011, 9:04 am
    Post #8 - October 23rd, 2011, 9:04 am Post #8 - October 23rd, 2011, 9:04 am
    Been a family tradition to head up to Ho-ka for thanksgiving turkey. Might go this route again, or might try a free range bird from the cats @ Wallace Farms out of Iowa, $3.00/lb.

    10-20 lb. Range. Bird's frozen, the only thing that might hold me back. I posted about Wallace farms somewhere On here before, they have drop off locations around the area.
  • Post #9 - October 23rd, 2011, 9:48 am
    Post #9 - October 23rd, 2011, 9:48 am Post #9 - October 23rd, 2011, 9:48 am
    Last bird I got was from Aldi's...and it was fresh (as in not frozen). I thought it was good! Sometimes you don't have to stray to far to find something good. :)
  • Post #10 - November 1st, 2011, 11:14 am
    Post #10 - November 1st, 2011, 11:14 am Post #10 - November 1st, 2011, 11:14 am
    Gilt City is offering a coupon for Big Hatt turkeys.
    http://www.giltcity.com/chicago/bighatt ... y&ECA=view
    I want to have a good body, but not as much as I want dessert. ~ Jason Love

    There is no pie in Nighthawks, which is why it's such a desolate image. ~ Happy Stomach

    I write fiction. You can find me—and some stories—on Facebook, Twitter and my website.
  • Post #11 - November 2nd, 2011, 6:41 am
    Post #11 - November 2nd, 2011, 6:41 am Post #11 - November 2nd, 2011, 6:41 am
    Best source is John's Live Poultry on Fullerton. Call now for reservation and get your number and date. Bring cooler, cash and ice because it may or may not be chilled depending on volume and what you want. I have been using them for years and the birds are excellent.
    This year my farmer friend is back in business so no John's but I will miss the place!-Dick
    BTW you pay by the # live weight.
    But at least your turkey has not been sitting in cold storage for a month or more.
  • Post #12 - November 3rd, 2011, 8:46 pm
    Post #12 - November 3rd, 2011, 8:46 pm Post #12 - November 3rd, 2011, 8:46 pm
    For the last few years I've had really good luck with turkeys from Mint Creek Farms:

    http://mintcreekfarm.com/products-page/ ... ng-turkey/
    It is VERY important to be smart when you're doing something stupid

    - Chris

    http://stavewoodworking.com
  • Post #13 - November 4th, 2011, 3:12 pm
    Post #13 - November 4th, 2011, 3:12 pm Post #13 - November 4th, 2011, 3:12 pm
    Hi- I know some people only want free range turkey, but for those people that are willing to eat a frozen conventionally raised turkey, a lot of stores have deals on turkeys st Thanksgiving. If you spend a certain amount at that particular grocery store, you can get the turkey either really cheap, or in some cases free. Dominick's has a deal going on in their J4U program, where you can get a free Jenny-O turkey, if you purchase $150 worth of groceries. That is more than I spend in a month at Dominick's, but I thought somebody with a large family would not have any problems spending $150 at Dominick's. I think it is $150 in cumulative purchases. You do not have to spend $150 in one shot. If somebody gets their prescriptions at Dominick's, they might be able to qualify that way. Hope this helps, Nancy
  • Post #14 - November 4th, 2011, 5:48 pm
    Post #14 - November 4th, 2011, 5:48 pm Post #14 - November 4th, 2011, 5:48 pm
    I was at Piatto Pronto for lunch today and they're taking orders for Ho-ka turkeys. Not sure of what the pick up schedule is.

    Piatto Pronto‎
    5624 North Clark Street
    Chicago, IL 60660-4109
    (773) 334-5688
    It is VERY important to be smart when you're doing something stupid

    - Chris

    http://stavewoodworking.com
  • Post #15 - November 5th, 2011, 4:14 am
    Post #15 - November 5th, 2011, 4:14 am Post #15 - November 5th, 2011, 4:14 am
    NFriday wrote:Hi- I know some people only want free range turkey, but for those people that are willing to eat a frozen conventionally raised turkey, a lot of stores have deals on turkeys st Thanksgiving. If you spend a certain amount at that particular grocery store, you can get the turkey either really cheap, or in some cases free. Dominick's has a deal going on in their J4U program, where you can get a free Jenny-O turkey, if you purchase $150 worth of groceries. That is more than I spend in a month at Dominick's, but I thought somebody with a large family would not have any problems spending $150 at Dominick's. I think it is $150 in cumulative purchases. You do not have to spend $150 in one shot. If somebody gets their prescriptions at Dominick's, they might be able to qualify that way. Hope this helps, Nancy


    The definition of 'free range' is open to just about anything a seller would like.
    There are really three types of turkeys available.
    The first and i believe the best Turkey is one that has no 'basting solution' added. These 'basting solutions' are salt, chemicals and water. Be aware that even turkeys of this category labeled 'fresh' have probably been in cold storage for a month or more. I purchase fresh just processed turkeys.
    Next is a 'kosher' turkey which by virtue of its name has been prepared with salt, usually sold frozen and many like them for the taste because of the salt.
    The last 'turkey' and i use the word turkey advisably is one that been chemically adulterated and usually sold frozen although they are also being sold fresh labeled 'All Natural' because the chemicals used are supposedly 'Natural', go figure? These are the turkeys discounted or given away free. I avoid them at all costs. These turkeys were developed to counter the effects of freezing and not to provide a better bird.-Dick
  • Post #16 - November 6th, 2011, 11:16 am
    Post #16 - November 6th, 2011, 11:16 am Post #16 - November 6th, 2011, 11:16 am
    I just ordered an organic fresh turkey from whole foods for pickup on 11/22. They're $3.49/lb and as much as I wanted to do the mint creek thing, they're $7.99/lb, way too expensive for me. I got a 10-12lb, should be more than enough for 3-4 of us.
  • Post #17 - November 6th, 2011, 2:16 pm
    Post #17 - November 6th, 2011, 2:16 pm Post #17 - November 6th, 2011, 2:16 pm
    Not too soon for me to start talking turkey; I am roasting one tonight. I bought a frozen one - just under 8.5 lbs, the smallest one the store had - a few days ago. (I am just the kind of shopper that the owner of Garden Fresh - who's recently jacked up prices noticeably - must hate; I spent more than an hour in the store and spent only $21, of which $10 was on a small cheap frozen turkey, $1.29/lb.)

    When I got it home I said it was a practice turkey, but I'm really not nervous at all about roasting a turkey; I just don't want turkey to be something we only have once or twice a year (Thanksgiving and Christmas). So while the sales are on, I plan to do a few more turkeys than that over the next few months.

    Right now today's turkey is brining. My only doubt about it is how long to cook it. The guidelines in a few books I looked at start at 2 to 2.5 hours for 12 to 14 pounds and so on up from there, in half-hour increments for 2-lb increments. It can't be a linear relationship in both directions, or I'd be able to roast this 8.5-lb turkey whole in about an hour. It's not critical, just a Sunday dinner, but I do need to be able to tell people when dinner will be.

    I found good advice on the range of cooking times for chickens and turkeys, whole and butterflied, in Julia's Kitchen Wisdom. I decided to butterfly it (the smaller the turkey the easier it is to wrangle), and cook it for about 1.5 hours. Or, come to think of it, maybe I'll grill it. Or, half on the grill and half in the oven, for comparison. Why not? It's a practice turkey.
    "Your swimming suit matches your eyes, you hold your nose before diving, loving you has made me bananas!"
  • Post #18 - November 23rd, 2011, 7:03 pm
    Post #18 - November 23rd, 2011, 7:03 pm Post #18 - November 23rd, 2011, 7:03 pm
    Hi folks,
    Thanks for all the tips. I decided to go out to the farm and get a Hoka turkey. We picked up a 14 pound bird yesterday. It went into a brine as soon as I got home and this morning it was in the smoker shortly before 7:00 AM. I was very happy with the results.

    Just one more comment on free range turkeys.... A producer can put a door to a yard on the building in which they raise the birds and call it free range. There is no requirement for how much space each bird gets. You are pretty much depending on either trusting the producer or inspecting yourself to make sure you are getting what you want. I'm probably naive but Hoka seemed like the kind of business I could trust.

    best,
    hank
  • Post #19 - November 25th, 2011, 9:35 pm
    Post #19 - November 25th, 2011, 9:35 pm Post #19 - November 25th, 2011, 9:35 pm
    This was our third year with a Ho-Ka, and we have found them to be excellent. I roasted a 22.8-pounder, no brine, covered in bacon the first 2 1/2 hours, and the bird came out moist and delicious. Still looking forward to a few more meals from that bird!
  • Post #20 - November 25th, 2011, 10:52 pm
    Post #20 - November 25th, 2011, 10:52 pm Post #20 - November 25th, 2011, 10:52 pm
    Hi- I was in Dominick's today, and noticed that they had some frozen organic turkeys for $2.99 a pound. Did anybody try one of those O Organic turkeys at Dominick's? Thanks, Nancy
  • Post #21 - November 12th, 2012, 9:14 am
    Post #21 - November 12th, 2012, 9:14 am Post #21 - November 12th, 2012, 9:14 am
    When I asked Mr. Pie what he wanted for Thanksgiving II this year, he mentioned ham. Since I can't imagine not having an abundance of turkey (and leftover sandwiches) and I was toying with the idea of buying a separate breast and legs this year anyway, I thought I'd splurge a bit and order the good stuff. I believe someone mentioned in a post last year that you can buy parts separate, but can you order fresh ones ahead? If so, any recommendations for places that I can order a breast, 4 legs, and a nice ham that won't break the bank?
    I want to have a good body, but not as much as I want dessert. ~ Jason Love

    There is no pie in Nighthawks, which is why it's such a desolate image. ~ Happy Stomach

    I write fiction. You can find me—and some stories—on Facebook, Twitter and my website.
  • Post #22 - November 13th, 2012, 1:08 pm
    Post #22 - November 13th, 2012, 1:08 pm Post #22 - November 13th, 2012, 1:08 pm
    I called Schmeisser's and they quoted $5.89/$5.99 per pound of fresh HoKa (bone-in/boneless respectively). Apparently you can order legs. Ham is $4.99 per pound. Do these prices sound average?
    I want to have a good body, but not as much as I want dessert. ~ Jason Love

    There is no pie in Nighthawks, which is why it's such a desolate image. ~ Happy Stomach

    I write fiction. You can find me—and some stories—on Facebook, Twitter and my website.
  • Post #23 - November 13th, 2012, 2:50 pm
    Post #23 - November 13th, 2012, 2:50 pm Post #23 - November 13th, 2012, 2:50 pm
    The Ho-Ka turkeys are something like $4.75/lb at Fresh Farms Niles. I don't know if they sell boneless turkeys, though.
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #24 - November 13th, 2012, 3:09 pm
    Post #24 - November 13th, 2012, 3:09 pm Post #24 - November 13th, 2012, 3:09 pm
    I also called Joseph's on Addison and their breasts were going for $3.59. I didn't ask about ham. I'd really love to give my money to Schmeisser's but that's a really great price.
    I want to have a good body, but not as much as I want dessert. ~ Jason Love

    There is no pie in Nighthawks, which is why it's such a desolate image. ~ Happy Stomach

    I write fiction. You can find me—and some stories—on Facebook, Twitter and my website.
  • Post #25 - November 16th, 2012, 1:32 pm
    Post #25 - November 16th, 2012, 1:32 pm Post #25 - November 16th, 2012, 1:32 pm
    Just a data point: I ordered my Hoka turkey yesterday at Hyde Park Treasure Island and it was under $3/lb. I'm seeing a lot of much higher prices listed in the thread, and I don't think of TI as bargain village by any means.
    "Strange how potent cheap music is."
  • Post #26 - November 16th, 2012, 2:29 pm
    Post #26 - November 16th, 2012, 2:29 pm Post #26 - November 16th, 2012, 2:29 pm
    Hoka turkeys are $2.79/lb at Valli Produce (on North Ave., Glendale Heights)
  • Post #27 - November 16th, 2012, 3:20 pm
    Post #27 - November 16th, 2012, 3:20 pm Post #27 - November 16th, 2012, 3:20 pm
    Jacques Pépin's Steamed and Roasted Turkey recipe in the NYT. It looks very tempting, but I am sticking to my mother's tried and true method (first part of roasting, drape the turkey with bacon to cover).
  • Post #28 - November 17th, 2012, 2:27 pm
    Post #28 - November 17th, 2012, 2:27 pm Post #28 - November 17th, 2012, 2:27 pm
    Pie Lady wrote:I can't imagine not having an abundance of turkey (and leftover sandwiches) and I was toying with the idea of buying a separate breast and legs this year anyway


    Why not buy a whole turkey or two and cut them up? Cook the parts you want and freeze the rest. You can always use the wings and other extra parts for stock.
  • Post #29 - November 18th, 2012, 6:48 am
    Post #29 - November 18th, 2012, 6:48 am Post #29 - November 18th, 2012, 6:48 am
    Popped up to Ho-Ka in WAterman, Il., Yesterday(plus n.aurora, and dekalb gathering t-day ingredients)

    WHole bird was $2.79/lb., bone in breast was $2.89/lb.

    Gonna get the breast boned out and into the brine later today. Gnna make a fine turkey "pastrami".
  • Post #30 - November 18th, 2012, 9:07 pm
    Post #30 - November 18th, 2012, 9:07 pm Post #30 - November 18th, 2012, 9:07 pm
    stevez wrote:The Ho-Ka turkeys are something like $4.75/lb at Fresh Farms Niles. I don't know if they sell boneless turkeys, though.


    Not sure where you saw that number. I just picked up my Ho-Ka turkey at Niles Fresh Farms for $2.79/lb (about 16.5lbs for a little over $45).
    “Assuredly it is a great accomplishment to be a novelist, but it is no mediocre glory to be a cook.” -- Alexandre Dumas

    "I give you Chicago. It is no London and Harvard. It is not Paris and buttermilk. It is American in every chitling and sparerib. It is alive from tail to snout." -- H.L. Mencken

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