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Anyone have problems w/ their TJ's kosher/fresh turkeys

mdepsmom Nov 27, 2008 05:21 PM

Imagine my surprise when I unwrapped my TJ's kosher (fresh) turkey this morning to find it covered in good sized pin feathers. My DH and I spent the better part of an hour, me with a pair of tweezers, and him with a pliers, pulling those suckers out. I was NOT pleased. Anyone else have this happen w/ their bird? This is the first time I've purchased a fresh kosher bird from TJ's. I saved the price sticker and a baggie full of pin feathers and I am sure as heck bringing it back to them.

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  1. Glencora RE: mdepsmom Nov 27, 2008 07:27 PM

    Yes, last year. I pulled out the pin feathers. It was a bother, but a tasty turkey. I didn't think of taking it back.

    1. m
      milkyway4679 RE: mdepsmom Nov 27, 2008 07:29 PM

      You probably don't need to bring it back to them, because I can tell you what they will (most likely) say. A Kosher turkey usually has the feathers on it. This is due to the processing (or lack thereof) of the turkey. Everything is done by hand, so the feathers are pulled as much as possible, but often, all of them cannot be removed, especially due to the processes that some Kosher factories use to remove all the blood (which is an essential part of Kosher cooking).

      So, I hate to say it, but they probably won't give you a refund, as that is just the way a Kosher bird comes.

      3 Replies
      1. re: milkyway4679
        LikestoEatout RE: milkyway4679 Nov 28, 2008 03:27 AM

        You will find some feathers in non Kosher fresh birds roo, it just comes with the territory. We had to pull some too with ours yesterday but the taste was well worth it.

        1. re: milkyway4679
          xanadude RE: milkyway4679 Nov 29, 2008 05:22 PM

          Kosher birds don't get a warm water bath for defeathering, so it doesn't work nearly as well.

          1. re: milkyway4679
            kiwi RE: milkyway4679 Dec 7, 2008 04:31 PM

            Generally speaking Trader Joe's will give you a refund on anything you are dissatisfied with.

          2. m
            mdepsmom RE: mdepsmom Nov 29, 2008 05:50 AM

            Thanks for the responses. This was our first time w/ a Kosher bird and I had no idea they came that way! I will not complain to TJ's about it. We were very happy w/ our turkey except for the pinfeather issue, and I would buy it again.

            5 Replies
            1. re: mdepsmom
              latindancer RE: mdepsmom Nov 29, 2008 03:49 PM

              The flavor that goes along with a kosher turkey/chicken is well worth the trouble of plucking them out. It's just the way it is and chicken soup is just not the same without a kosher chicken.

              1. re: latindancer
                mdepsmom RE: latindancer Dec 1, 2008 10:48 AM

                You've brought up a really interesting point. When my mom made chicken soup, I remember her plucking the pinfeathers out of the bird first, and I know she always bought her chickens from a Kosher butcher. Now that I make chicken soup, I buy Tyson or whatever brand it is that my grocery store carries. My soup, although I use the same ingredients my mom always used, never has the flavor that hers had. It never occurred to me that using a kosher bird would make the difference! So thank you for that - now I am looking forward to testing this theory for Passover.

                1. re: mdepsmom
                  ferret RE: mdepsmom Dec 1, 2008 12:27 PM

                  Cook's Illustrated ran a review some years ago with Empire among the favorites -- primarily because the kashering created a partially-brined, and therefore juicier, bird.

                  1. re: ferret
                    Humbucker RE: ferret Dec 2, 2008 09:09 AM

                    Kosher is also saltier, so that might be a large component of the extra flavor your mom's soup had.

                  2. re: mdepsmom
                    latindancer RE: mdepsmom Dec 1, 2008 08:48 PM

                    You are quite welcome :). I've never made chicken soup without a kosher chicken and I buy my chicken(s) from Doheny kosher meat on Pico.
                    They have a torch that burns the pinfeathers off when you purchase the fresh chickens and it's nice because there's no bother with having to pluck them.
                    I'm glad I was able to bring this to your attention and, of course, you will notice the difference. Have fun!!

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