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Nov 6, 2008 09:58 PM

Turkey/Chicken Coldcuts vs. Whole Chickens/Turkeys


Where I live-- the options on coldcuts is rather limited-- but someone put me up on game recently that it tastes better if you roast your own chicken/ turkeys and cut off slices.

Is this true for the most part-- I just want a good tasting turkey coldcut tat I can make at home- preferrably.

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  1. I prefer the meat from the bird. Better flavor, less extra stuff added to the meat. I often use Jeff Smiths method of Chinese Poached chicken. Don't let the simplicity of the recipe fool you! This method sort of sears the skin, keeping the bird incredibly juicy and flavorful. Once it is done the meat can be used in countless ways!

    I made this and removed the meat from the carcass recently before leaving for a week at the beach. It made for great sandwiches, quick wraps and soups for do it yourself lunches.
    Everyone kept asking how it had been seasoned!

    The main pluses of purchased cold cuts is ease of portion control and they don't take much space in a crowded fridge.

    1. Definitely cut from the bird is better, plus you control the ingredients. Cold cuts tend to have preservatives, sugars, starches and flavorings, both natural and artificial, added.

      For minimal waste and effort I often roast a whole turkey breast to use for sandwiches. Couldn't be simpler: rub softened butter all over the skin of the breast, season with salt and pepper and roast in a 325 degree oven for the time recommended on the label (something like 15 to 30 minutes per pound, can't recollect the exact timing now). Baste periodically with the pan drippings, and let it cool before removing the flesh from the bones. Some turkey breasts can be quite large, so we often freeze half for later. Much much tastier and better texture than cold cuts.

      1. Achilles, do you have a Whole Foods where you live? They roast fresh turkey breast and sell it sliced by the pound. It's just like Thanksgiving leftovers. Not cheap though, usually about $10 a pound. You can certainly roast a turkey breast yourself and slice it up, but unless you've got several people in your household you'll end up with more than you can finish before it goes bad, so be prepared to freeze some as jannie suggests.

        All brand name poultry-based cold cuts have so much junk added to them they don't taste remotely like the actual bird.

        1. Depends on your taste preference. The bagged poultry "products" I've had I don't like. But beware. Three frozen turkey breasts I've bought have been injected with unpleasant tasting mystery flavorings from alien planets. But an untreated turkey breast will give you that great roast turkey flavor. I freeze left-over slices, BTW, and they make good sandwiches.