There is always debate over the best sides for Thanksgiving dinner, but there is no doubt that turkey is the centerpiece of the holiday dinner. If you’re planning on serving a wild bird instead of a butterball this year, there are a few things to consider.
Whole Bird versus Breaking it Down
Nothing is more iconic than a whole roasted turkey on a carving platter. But it’s really not an ideal way to cook a wild turkey, or for that matter, any turkey (unless it’s a really small one).
Turkeys are large birds, and because of their size, roasting them whole results in a lot of issues. Breasts, thighs, and legs vary in density and require different cook times and temperatures. By the time the legs and thighs are done, the breast meat is usually overcooked. This issue is common with domestic birds and even more pronounced with a lean, wild one.
That rope dragger you killed spent years evading predators, fighting other turkeys, and generally making a fool out of turkey hunters….