Loading...

Ask Mr. Gold 

Thursday, Nov 24 2005
Comments

Question: I’ve probably procrastinated too long. But in case it’s not too late, are there still great turkeys to be had in Los Angeles, or am I destined to take a trip on the Good Ship Butterball once again, a prisoner in my own kitchen?

—Maria R., Los Angeles

Answer: If you are looking for the Heritage-brokered Standard Bronzes from the Good Shepherd Ranch in Kansas, the ones that the local Slow Food chapter is distributing, you are too late. Last call was last Sunday. And I know that in the past, I have suggested the excellent Shelton turkeys, locally grown free-range birds with a developed flavor, and the delicious Willie Birds from Sonoma, both of which are available locally at places like Puritan Poultry in the Farmers Market, Howie’s, Whole Foods and Wild Oats. You really can’t go wrong with a Shelton bird.

But for the last couple of years, I’ve gone with Bourbon Reds from Mary’s Turkeys in the Central Valley, also affiliated with the Heritage Turkey program to foster old breeds of fowl, and they have probably been the best turkeys I have ever eaten, with a deep, rich, almost nutty taste that is to a regular bird what a Holbein is to the latest Jeff Koons, crackling skin closer to suckling pig than to anything I’ve ever tasted on a turkey, and a firm, almost steak-like texture. The carcasses even seem to make superior stock. And you can probably pick one up at your local Bristol Farms even today. (Call and reserve one this second.) They’re kind of expensive – this year’s turkey was about six bucks a pound – but after you factor in a week of turkey soup, turkey hash, turkey risotto and hot-turkey sandwiches, that extra flavor seems well worth the price.


Got a burning culinary question? Ask Mr. Gold by e-mailing askmrgold@laweekly.com

Related Stories

Related Content

Now Trending

Slideshows

  • The Tasting Menu Trend
    In Los Angeles especially, but increasingly across the country, restaurants are either switching to tasting menus, putting a greater focus on a tasting-menu option (while offering à la carte items as well), or opening as tasting-menu operations from day one. The format that used to be the calling card of only the fanciest of restaurants is becoming ubiquitous, even at places where the waiter calls you “dude” and there isn’t a white tablecloth in sight.
  • Milo's Kitchen: A Treat Truck for Dogs
    Milo's Kitchen, a part of California-based Big Heart Pet Brands, is taking its homestyle dog treats on the road this summer with the "Treat Truck." The dogified food truck is making stops all over the country, ending up in New York early September. The truck stopped at Redondo Beach Dog Park Friday morning entertaining the pups with treats, a photo-booth and play zone. Milo's Kitchen Treat Truck offered samples of the line's six flavors, all with chicken or beef as the first ingredient, and all made in the U.S.A. with no artificial colors or preservatives. All photos by Nanette Gonzales.
  • Smoke.oil.salt's Spanish Cuisine
    Smoke.oil.salt chef (and Valencia native) Perfecto Rocher is valiantly trying to bring the experience of Spain, specifically Catalonia, to the brick space (under a tattoo parlor) on Melrose that used to be Evan Kleiman’s Angeli Caffe.