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Salty Turkey

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I was a vegetarian for almost 30 years, and only started eating poulty about a year ago. I made my first attempt at Turkey yesterday. I bought a frozen Empire breast (only feeding 3), defrosted it, and roasted it with just a little margarine rubbed on the skin. I thought it tasted really salty. Is this just par for the course with kosher turkeys or is there anything I can do to reduce the sodium?


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  1. My experience with Empire is that they're inordinately salty. It's part of the koshering process, I've been told. I tried, but, ultimately, found them inedible. Chickens are the same. Just too salty for me.

    I tried rinsing them, but it didn't seem to make much of a difference.

      1. Sorry, kosher poultry is by definition full of salt (by my standards). They are soaked in salt water (brine) to purge the blood from the flesh, not for flavor or culinary reasons; has to do with orthodox Jewish dietary law. The salt is there to stay.

        For health reasons, I cut way back on my salt several years ago, and I am now exceptionally sensitive to salt. Kosher birds, supermarket frozen injected turkeys, and all of these home turkey brining threads elsewhere are way too salty for me, so I avoid them.

        1. We ordered a fresh turkey from whole foods and it was great. I too have found that most commercial birds are salty. They are injected and/or brined. I'd much rather buy a fresh one and control the seasoning myself. The fresher you buy the better.

          1 Reply
          1. re: sgwood415

            Are the fresh Empire birds any less salty than the frozen? I know they are kashered in the same way, but is there any difference? I don't find the fresh Empire chickens I buy to seem as salty, although perhaps I just don't taste it as acutely. The only kosher turkey I can get in the small town where I live is frozen.

          2. Sorry. I meant to post this originally on the Kosher board! Whoops!