Turkey for the Holidays!
In the United States, Turkey is the centerpiece of the Thanksgiving dinner. Thanksgiving was first celebrated in 1621 to give thanks for the harvest. The Pilgrims and the Wampanoag shared a meal of fowl, corn, bread, and venison. The Wampanoag grew beans and the forest provided chestnuts, walnuts, and beechnuts.
However, if the Pilgrims had their way, we’d be fasting rather than feasting on the fourth Thursday of November. The devout settlers of Plymouth Rock had planned to give thanks for their first harvest in America by fasting and prayer. The Wampanoag Indians had a much different idea about how to celebrate harvest, including dancing, games, and feasting.
The Thanksgiving tradition was only celebrated in certain American colonies for many years after that first historic meal. In fact, it wasn’t until 1777 that all 13 colonies celebrated Thanksgiving. In 1863, Abraham Lincoln recognized the historic tradition of Thanksgiving. And finally, in 1941, Thanksgiving became a legal, national holiday, which we look forward to with much preparation each year on the fourth Thursday of November. We may not all be harvesting from our gardens for this feast, but we do look forward to sharing this meal with family and friends.
Some Fun Turkey Facts
- The average weight of a turkey purchased at Thanksgiving is 15 pounds
- The heaviest turkey ever raised was 86 pounds.
- The wild turkey is native to northern Mexico and the eastern United States.
- Wild turkeys spend the night in trees.
- Male turkeys are called a tom.
- Female turkeys are called a hen.
- Tom turkeys have beards comprised of black, hair-like feathers on their breast.
- Toms gobble. Hens do not; they make a clicking noise.
- The red, fleshy growth under the turkey’s throat is called a wattle.
- The red-pink flesh on the head and upper neck is call the caruncle.
- The Turkey Trot was named for the short, jerky steps of a turkey.
- Turkeys have 3,500 feathers at maturity.
- The Indians used turkey features to stabilize arrows and adorn ceremonial dress.
- Turkey is low in fat and high in protein, especially the white meat.
Thanksgiving is just around the corner
Turkey is an excellent source of protein and Thanksgiving is just around the corner. As you prepare your holiday menu, be sure to consider this classic culinary star. For wholesale turkey sources, Interra International is your trusted source for procurement, export, and distribution of meat and poultry products. Give thanks this holiday with an experienced partner in the wholesale food industry. Quality, value, and services – Interra International. Contact us today.