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Russo's Turkeys

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gyppielou Nov 21, 2009 01:39 PM

I made my first visit to this legendary place today. It was a maddhouse! I was amazed at the produce and perhaps a 100 fresh ingredients that would take some thought on how to prepare.

I begged to be put on a waiting list for any cancelled turkeys. Customer service was amazing and I await their call with fingers crossed.

Now, feeling positive that it will be a Russo's , but with a Wilson's backup which I'll cancel promptlyv the question is

to brine or not to brine these fresh turkeys? I am making a turkey neck stock for gravy from Wilson's fresh necks, so no worries on saltiness. Just don't know if the fresh real turkey needs or hopes for brining? I like Alton Browns recipe give or take an ingredient that may not be in the pantry.

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    gyppielou RE: gyppielou Nov 21, 2009 01:47 PM

    Oh, and I got some fantastic tropical flowers for 5.95 a bunch with lots of greens! Choose carefully and they will still be wonderfully fresh for the holiday.

    1. kobuta RE: gyppielou Nov 21, 2009 02:50 PM

      I can't speak to Russo's turkeys in particular, but I've brined fresh turkeys before and they've come out fantastic. Just imparts so much more flavor and moisture, especially if you use more seasoning in the brine.

      3 Replies
      1. re: kobuta
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        Spenbald RE: kobuta Nov 21, 2009 05:04 PM

        I was under the impression that Russo's and Wilson's were sourcing from the same place? Maybe I was wrong...In any case, we brined our turkey from Russo's last year (not sure if it was from the same farm) and it was fantastic. If you are already considering, why not just do it?

        1. re: Spenbald
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          gyppielou RE: Spenbald Nov 21, 2009 05:51 PM

          That is interesting that they MAY be sourced from the same farm.
          Can anyone confirm. I had such better customer service at Russo's while being ignored twice by the guy making time with other customers at Wilson's.
          Brine it will be!

          1. re: gyppielou
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            Spenbald RE: gyppielou Nov 21, 2009 08:46 PM

            Actually, just looking at Wilson's website, even though they don't specify where the turkeys are coming from, they are raised exclusively for Wilson's...

            Will be anxious to hear how the brining goes!

      2. BarmyFotheringayPhipps RE: gyppielou Nov 22, 2009 08:37 PM

        I brine a fresh turkey every year, with consistently excellent results. Go for it.

        Russo's was less of a madhouse than I expected this afternoon around 4: we did all of our Thanksgiving shopping and were in and out in just a hair under 20 minutes.

        8 Replies
        1. re: BarmyFotheringayPhipps
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          veggielover RE: BarmyFotheringayPhipps Nov 23, 2009 08:13 AM

          Russo's was a madhouse yesterday with people fighting about their place in the line, no room for carts, etc.

          1. re: veggielover
            Allstonian RE: veggielover Nov 24, 2009 10:46 AM

            Clearly, as we had suspected, it paid to get there late in the afternoon! Not empty, by any means, but nothing like you describe.

            1. re: Allstonian
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              bear RE: Allstonian Nov 24, 2009 03:44 PM

              We were just there today around 5. It was not bad at all...no wait in lines. There was a 10 minute wait or so at the deli, but that's about it. A pleasant surprise.

          2. re: BarmyFotheringayPhipps
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            heypielady RE: BarmyFotheringayPhipps Nov 25, 2009 10:36 AM

            So even thought the OP is all set for the gravy, in general, can you still make gravy from the drippings of a brined turkey or will it be too salty?

            1. re: heypielady
              kobuta RE: heypielady Nov 25, 2009 11:23 AM

              I find it's a little salty, but you can thin it out with water and it's fine. I make gravy from the drippings of my brined turkey every year.

              1. re: heypielady
                PinchOfSalt RE: heypielady Nov 25, 2009 11:27 AM

                Yes, the drippings will be salty if you brine your turkey. My solution is to make a vat of salt-free turkey broth the day before, using necks and wings. The broth goes into the pan with the drippings to make gravy. It also moistens the stuffing (baked separately). Whatever is left goes into the freezer, for future gravy to go with the frozen turkey leftovers.

                1. re: heypielady
                  BarmyFotheringayPhipps RE: heypielady Nov 25, 2009 12:41 PM

                  You can definitely make gravy from the drippings of a brined turkey. Just be careful with how you season the gravy as you're making it.

                  1. re: BarmyFotheringayPhipps
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                    teezeetoo RE: BarmyFotheringayPhipps Nov 25, 2009 12:45 PM

                    confirming the above, of course you can make gravy with the drippings from a brined bird. Like Pinch of Salt, I make a good stock the day before and freeze the leftovers. Makes dynamite gravy with the drippings. We do our brined birds outside, unless its a storm, on the Weber, by indirect method. Put a pan underneath for the drippings. The best birds ever, we think. Saves the oven for everything else.

              2. nsenada RE: gyppielou Nov 23, 2009 05:25 AM

                I got mine from Owen's Poultry Farm in Needham last year, and brining worked fine. I also "dried" it overnight in the fridge, per Cook's Illustrated recipe from a couple years ago, and the skin was totally bronzed and crisp (I also snuck some herbed, garlicy fatback between the skin and breast). There's a discussion on the "dry brining" technique on the recipes board, but I've never tried it.

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                  gyppielou RE: gyppielou Nov 23, 2009 07:13 PM

                  Even though I was told 3 times that they were sold out, I landed my Russo's turkey today. Something about it just seemed more right then the Wilson, which I promptly cancelled so someone else could enjoy it.

                  Ready to Alton Brown Brine it! I know this is the turkey for me, and my distinguished guests!!!

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: gyppielou
                    justbeingpolite RE: gyppielou Nov 24, 2009 04:13 AM

                    My Turkey's from Wagon Wheel in Lexington. Small stand on Waltham St at Concord Ave. They say their turkeys are from a farm in Western MA. Fresh, never frozen. I plan to brine him overnight then bone and stuff it.

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