better with age?

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by turksinmaine, Mar 4, 2016.

  1. turksinmaine

    turksinmaine Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 28, 2015
    I have been spending recent days whether or not to allow my heritage bourbons to age/grow 6 or so months longer. they are a year old right now, and as you well know giving another 6 months can run into some money. Yet money is not the factor for me for the investment is not seeking return. Instead I want the birds at full mature weight at the stage of being very flavorful, etc. Will I or may I see any different result to allowing them to age to 18-21 months old vs processing them now at a year old? may the flavor, texture, and or size possibly change over the course if alow to age another 6-8 months? if so, how?
  2. Sutremaine

    Sutremaine Chillin' With My Peeps

    Aug 19, 2014
    I'm sure someone with experience in the matter will be along shortly to answer, but in the meantime my suggestion would be to keep as many as your wallet can stand and process the rest.
  3. donrae

    donrae Hopelessly Addicted Premium Member

    Jun 18, 2010
    Southern Oregon
    I don't have experience with turkeys (only wild birds), but with chickens there would be no benefit to holding the birds that much longer. The flavor doesn't change much after the 5-6 month mark vs the 1-2 year old mark, and there's no significant weight gain. All you're doing is feeding to maintain that weight for all that time.
  4. heahaa

    heahaa Out Of The Brooder

    Jul 25, 2015
    I am curious to the flavor as well. I purchased 15 from a hatchery last year. My intent was 2 hens for my tom and process the rest for sale at thanksgiving. They weren't even close at thanksgiving and all 15 + the 2 free are happy and healthy. Having no luck selling them off now. They will be 17mths come thanksgiving. Tastey or gamey?
  5. jaj121159

    jaj121159 Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 27, 2010
    Northeast Nebraska
    Heritage turkeys cook up a lot like wild turkeys. The older they get, the tougher they get. Here are some tricks when cooking heritage or wild turkeys. About two days prior to cooking and after they have thawed, brine them by soaking them in salted water. This can be tough to do with turkeys because of their size, because they still need to be refrigerated.

    You can try some or all of the suggestions below.
    - Wrap bacon around the leg quarters and cover the breast in bacon.
    - I recommend cooking the bird in a roasting bag.
    - Use an injector to inject melted butter into the meat and don't forget the dark meat as that is always the dryest part.
    - Put a really wet bread stuffing in the body cavity or stuff with sliced apples, and or oranges.

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