This past summer, I worked on a project for Lithographics, featuring a multitude of farms, markets and restaurants that share my philosophy about using local food. The project is called Nashville Loves Food. As promised, I will showcase folks who give a damn about where their food comes from in the upcoming weeks. I am also planning events where you will get to meet some of these folks I now consider friends and family. Please drop me a line if you would like to receive more information about the project. One of the things that I learned while producing Nashville Loves Food was that there are many producers that sell turkeys around Thanksgiving because of the high demand, but very few actually raise the costly poultry. I was compelled to share with a large audience some of my favorites that raise and nurture our Thanksgiving delicacy from the time they are hatched. Corbin In The Dell is now published in Nashville Lifestyles! Please support them by picking up the latest copy on newsstands today. In the November issue, you will find a little turkey talk. Meanwhile, let’s talk turkey….
Sure we have heard about the dangers of what makes the conventional turkey so busty, but what other choices do we have beside the ones that come shrink -wrapped from our local grocer? Luckily, Middle Tennesseans have a bounty of locally crafted food that shall grace localvores’ Thanksgiving table this year. From Turkey to Tofu, Corbin In The Dell has you covered:
Wedge Oak Farm is located in Lebanon, Tennessee where pasture raised pigs, chickens and turkeys flourish. Karen Overton is a third generation farmer who has a passion for not only raising birds as healthy as possible with the respect they deserve, but also reducing our carbon foot print. Her “Giant Whites” are fed no synthetic chemicals and are pastured with a supplemental diet of grains sourced from a mill right down the road from her farm. All 200 birds she has raised for the holiday season are processed in Bowling Green, Kentucky. Her philosophy is that “the care of the animal and the life they have, come through in the taste of the meat.” Frozen turkeys will be available the first week in November and a very limited amount of fresh ones the weekend before Thanksgiving. You may reserve your turkey with a deposit by calling 615-547-4222 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Peaceful Pastures is located in Hickman, Tennessee. Poultry, beef, lamb, goat and pork are all part of their farm. Jenny and Darrin Drake’s farming principles are steeped in their Christian faith with a humane and natural focus. Jenny says “We raise our animals as God intended in a conventional world with a God intended environment and diet.” Free of gmo’s and soy, with a primarily pastured diet, these peaceful birds are processed at Brushy Prairie Packing in Indiana. If you want a Peaceful Pastures turkey, a $10 non-refundable deposit will reserve your turkey at peacefulpastures.com, but do it soon. The Drakes raised just about 100 birds this year.
Jolly Barnyard is located in Ashland City, Tennessee. Here you will find cows, pigs and poultry raised with a farming strategy based upon a soil building principal called Management Intensive Grazing. Just as crop rotation is important for robust produce, rotation of livestock and poultry are important in pastured meat. ”Nutrition, health and respect for the earth are what drive us to make wholesome products available and affordable to others,” explains Samuel Yoder. Jolly Barnyard’s Broad Breasted Whites will be processed in Christian County, KY just in time for a fresh Thanksgiving turkey. Please email email@example.com or call 615-746-5208 to reserve your turkey. Porter Road Butcher will also have a limited supply of fresh Jolly Barnyard turkeys. Call 615-650-4440 or stop by PRB for reservations soon. Psst, PRB will also have all the trimmings to order!
FarmSoy is a great option for the local vegetarian. They have been making soy milk and tofu since the 1970’s and are certified organic using non-gmo beans. While their soybeans are from a farm in Illinois, the tofu is hand crafted in Summertown, Tennessee. Barbara Elliott, FarmSoy owner, takes pride in the fact that FarmSoy is not factory made. With four people to make and three people to pack, this is truly an old school tofu. Visit farmsoy.com to learn where to purchase FarmSoy products.
…A final word or two about the heritage breed turkey. The general consensus of the farmers I featured is that they are expensive to raise, with not a lot of meat on top (if you know what I mean.) Discerning palates feel that the heritage breeds are the closest in taste to a wild turkey. They also fly just as much as a wild turkey. This means heritage birds must be confined to protect them from predators such as hawks. Think “18 inch legs with small breasts in a pin.” While long legs and lean bodies may be prime choice on the runway, a juicy turkey breast makes for much better Black Friday sammies!