Christmas 2020 at Tavern Tasty Meats
Christmas Free Range Turkeys
Free Range Woodland Turkeys
Arriving in May and June direct from the hatchery they are cared for by dedicated stockmen who take pride in their work. Once old enough they are left to wander in ancient woodland and basically as with the geese do as they please, not harassed and just living naturally. They have access to straw-bedded barns at night, but quite often choose to sleep outside depending on the weather.
Free Range Geese
Brought to the farm in June, they are reared inside for the first 2-3 weeks before gradually being allowed access to grass. Once they have enough plumage to keep them warm and dry, they are then given access to open grassland where they are literally left outside with hedges for shade and shelter from the weather. The perimeter is protected by an electric fence to stop any vermin.
The home of the Norfolk Black
FOR FOUR GENERATIONS my family has been rearing the Norfolk Black turkey, a breed that my grandfather saved from extinction in the 1950s. The Norfolk Black originated in South America and was introduced to Europe by the Spanish explorer Pedro Nino around 1500. It has striking jet-black plummage, but the Norfolk Black is most celebrated for its finely-textured meat which has a slightly gamey flavour.
We allow our turkeys to mate naturally and all our poults are reared outside and allowed to mature slowly. The rations we feed are mixed on our farm using our own home-grown wheat, barley, oats and beans and whole corn is fed to add a ‘bloom’ to the finished birds. All our turkeys are free range, additive and antibiotic free and are reared on organic meadowland. To enhance these traditional rearing methods we hand pluck and hang our birds for at least a week, and every turkey is prepared for your table by hand. An average oven-ready weight of 10-12lbs (hens) and 18-21lbs (stags) is normal for the Norfolk Black turkey. To help offer a larger range of weights we also breed the Cambridge Bronze Turkey and in conjunction with the Rare Breeds Survival Trust we are also rearing the Bourbon Red, Lavender and Narrangansett breeds.
Peele’s Norfolk Black Turkeys is a Rick Stein Food Hero and was featured in his first BBC TV series. We are also featured in Delia Smith’s Delia’s Happy Christmas, listed as one of her faithful suppliers.