FoodLove's newsletter for 11/3/16 View this email in your browser ( Share ( Tweet ( Pin ( Forward ( Let's talk turkey, FoodLover! You may have noticed that this blog is not very meat-centric. It's true, my first love is veggies but the Chief Taster and I do occasionally eat meat and one of our favorites is a gorgeous Thanksgiving turkey so I will be doing the next few posts about how to choose a turkey, how to brine, and how to make foolproof gravy.

Today's post is about choosing the right turkey, which includes a lot more than just figuring out what size to get!

The Chief Taster no I are not vegetarians but we do enjoy a mostly plant-based diet for the sake of our own health and for the benefit of the environment and the welfare of animals.

Over the years we've attempted to educate ourselves on how animals are raised and slaughtered and we decided that for the reasons mentioned above the animals we eat should be raised humanely in a way that is symbiotic with other animals and plant life. That means you need to buy your meat from a reputable store or from a farmer you trust.

Luckily, we have access to many local farms so I started calling around to find out what prices and quantities meat was available in. The least expensive options meant buying in the largest quantities and we didn't want to eat THAT much meat (even at our most carnivorous we still loved our veggies!).

That left the option of purchasing from a butcher or a natural foods store where I could speak to the in-house butchers and learn some things about what they sell. I found that locally Sutter Meats, River Valley Co-op and Whole Foods all have great options but I won't lie; they all gave me sticker shock!

We instantly went from $1.49 per pound chicken breast from the local discount meat market to $6.99 per pound humane and organic chicken. That's a big difference! But we gave it some consideration, decided our health and the lives of the animals mattered so we allotted a little more of our budget to food purchases and decided to eat less meat.

You know what? It was an easy change. And we felt so good doing it. Then came Thanksgiving and a new challenge: how to choose a bird we could feel good about? Again, that first year was a little surprising in the price department (Note: a turkey raised humanely by local farmers does not sell for the same price as that frozen-supermarket-Thanksgiving-sale turkey!) but absolutely worth it!

At a holiday feast focused on giving thanks for life, love, family and friends I could feel 100% good about what I was serving. And now we eat that one turkey a year and we look forward to it as the special meal it really is!

So, what's the right choice for your family? Here's some guidance ( to help you find the best bird for your special meal!

Next week, brining!

Thanks, friend, for reading. Head on over to our blog ( to join the conversation and please share ( with all the FoodLovers you know! Hi! I'm Tonianne, food evangelist and creator of FoodLove. That's me happy as can be, cooking for friends on a camping trip, and sharing wonderful conversation about – yup, you guessed it! – food. Thanks for reading and I hope you enjoy the conversation, too. PHOTO CREDIT: D. SHEA

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