Thanksgiving at Gnarly Vines Farm is serious business. At time of press, half of their pasture-raised turkeys had already been reserved for the big day, and owner and farmer Ester Bishop anticipates they’ll sell out during the first weeks of November. While the race to snag your bird is on, the process of raising foul and other farm animals on their regenerative Tiverton farm is one that takes time.
“We believe animals should be able to live a happy and healthy life outdoors as they do in the wild,” says Bishop. “The turkeys roam an open pasture where we offer protection against predators and the weather and allow them to forage for grasses, weeds, and bugs. Our turkeys are processed just a couple of weeks before Thanksgiving, so the flavor of our pasture-raised meat is superior to anything you will ever find at a grocery store.”
For the past couple of years, Gnarly Vines Farm has offered Thanksgiving dinner packages to help ease some of the pandemic separation pangs. This year, Bishop isn’t sure if they’ll carry on the meal prep tradition, but she does offer her own tried-and-true tips to ease Thanksgiving stress in the kitchen. Following a two-day brine, “the night before, I take it out, pat dry with a paper towel, and leave it uncovered in the fridge overnight so the skin will be nice and dry the next day. On the morning of Thanksgiving, I cover the entire bird with pasture-raised butter, salt, and pepper and stuff the cavity with herbs like thyme, rosemary, and sage, along with onions and garlic.” And don’t forget – a meat thermometer is your best friend!
Follow for updates about the possibility of Thanksgiving meal packages, and order 16-25-pound turkeys online for frozen pick-up at Gnarly Vines Farm November 21-23, the Mount Hope Farm Farmers Market November 12 or 19, or the Tiverton Farmers Market November 13 or 20.
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