Edward Wilkinson of Herb Fed, our suppliers of herb fed Christmas turkeys, has been running the flock at Herb Fed for over ten years. After deciding he needed a change of pace and leaving London and his career as a chartered surveyor, he made the decision to return back home to Yorkshire where we grew up and start a business on the family farm.
After having a moment to think about what he’d like to do, and with farming in his blood, he took a chance and went for a total change in direction! He felt there was a niche in the market for good quality chicken and turkey, eight years later and he hasn’t looked back, making a name for himself in the industry by supplying the country’s finest establishments with high welfare, free-range, herb-fed Yorkshire chickens and turkeys.
One of the key messages that comes up when talking to Ed is ‘sustainability’ – not just a trendy key word on this farm, all of the 8,000 strong free range turkeys are fed a unique diet which, in addition to their natural cereal based feed, includes over ten varieties of fresh herbs, product from his Aunt Alison’s farm down the road. We know her as Alison Dodd, a Fodder farm shop favourite and supplier of fresh Yorkshire-grown herbs, Herbs Unlimited. Not only does this keep products from being wasted but it also adds to the distinctive flavour our customers love. The poultry are farmed in a traditional method, hand-fed and kept in small flocks, this means they are free to forage for their food and roam around the beautiful Yorkshire pasture.
So what is the difference exactly between a herb fed Christmas turkey from Fodder and your average supermarket turkey? Well a whole lot apparently! Firstly when you buy your turkey from the award winning butchery at Fodder you know exactly where it comes from, this trace-ability is vital in keeping a high quality Yorkshire product. You also may be surprised to learn you need a slightly smaller turkey than you would need if buying at a supermarket, this is down to Ed and his team supplying us with the finest slow growing turkeys, they have a higher ratio of meat, making them actually quite good value not to mention a far superior taste and texture.
Now that you’ve got the best turkey in Yorkshire, (or possibly the world) what do you do next? We advise cooking it perfectly, Herb Fed tell us upside down is fantastic as your turkey will self baste, try using this recipe by the experts themselves. Next you’ll need to serve it with the tastiest local sides, like Yorkshire roast potatoes, fresh sprouts, pigs in blankets from our butchery counter and don’t forget the cranberry sauce! And if like us you can’t get enough of it make sure you order enough for those turkey leftover sandwiches.
If you’re not on cooking duty this year why not bring your host a special treat, grab a cheese board from our deli counter, stocked with award winning local and continental cheeses, or for a real treat these Christmas hampers are made up in our Harrogate farm shop and are bursting full of local goodies.
We hope to welcome you to Fodder soon and help you with everything you need to get you in the Christmas spirit!