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Thread: Question about giblets included in turkeys

  1. #1

    Question about giblets included in turkeys

    I've been buying Organic Prairie turkeys for the holidays for several years, and invariably the giblets are incomplete. It's extremely rare for them to include a full set of giblets. However, apparently the USDA allows a manufacturer to use the label "with giblets" as long as at least half of each kind of giblet is included (which seems ridiculous). This time, my turkey came with...you guessed it...half a liver, half a heart, and half a gizzard.

    Since it's been a while since I bought a conventional turkey such as Butterball, and I can't remember about the giblets, I was just wondering--how often do you get a full set of giblets with those kinds of turkeys? I don't really remember this thing happening, though, for those turkeys. Thanks for any info.

  2. #2
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    Crazy. What will the producer do with the other halves? I'll check back this evening after I prep the bird .

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    I'll check back, too. How strange!
    Chacun à son goût!

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by onilollaig View Post
    I've been buying Organic Prairie turkeys for the holidays for several years, and invariably the giblets are incomplete. It's extremely rare for them to include a full set of giblets. However, apparently the USDA allows a manufacturer to use the label "with giblets" as long as at least half of each kind of giblet is included (which seems ridiculous). This time, my turkey came with...you guessed it...half a liver, half a heart, and half a gizzard.

    Since it's been a while since I bought a conventional turkey such as Butterball, and I can't remember about the giblets, I was just wondering--how often do you get a full set of giblets with those kinds of turkeys? I don't really remember this thing happening, though, for those turkeys. Thanks for any info.
    I use giblets for broth. I would be happy if they didn't weigh all the giblets in the cost per pound of an organic turkey.

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    It looks like our turkey has a full complement of giblets. I don't use them for much at Thanksgiving, but when we butcher chickens I save the gizzards and confit them; they're great over a spring greens salad with a some dressing with mustard.
    Chacun à son goût!

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by RiverFarm View Post
    It looks like our turkey has a full complement of giblets.
    Thanks for the helpful info, RiverFarm. Just curious--what brand was your turkey?

    Yeah, I'd like to know exactly what Organic Prairie is doing with the rest of the giblets.

    when we butcher chickens I save the gizzards and confit them; they're great over a spring greens salad with a some dressing with mustard.
    Sounds tasty.

    Anyone else who's done a giblet check on your turkey, please post here.

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    I have a plain old Jennie-O turkey this year. Mine came with two gizzards, two livers and one neck. No heart this year.
    As frugal as I am, I don't use the giblets for anything. Some years I use the neck for broth for stuffing, but this year we're not having stuffing, so they all got tossed.
    Merry: I don't think he knows about second breakfast, Pip.
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    My brand was ShopRite's, since they didn't get in the kosher turkeys that I prefer this year. And I just checked more carefully and while I have a whole heart and liver, I only have a chunk of giblet. How odd. I wonder whether it takes too much time to clean them and they just do a - er - half-hearted job of it and chuck the rest, or use it for dog or cat food?
    Chacun à son goût!

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by mrswaz View Post
    I have a plain old Jennie-O turkey this year. Mine came with two gizzards, two livers and one neck. No heart this year.
    Thanks, mrswaz. Well, at least you probably got the proper weight in giblets.

    As frugal as I am, I don't use the giblets for anything. Some years I use the neck for broth for stuffing, but this year we're not having stuffing, so they all got tossed.
    That's too bad. I guess you don't have a pet?

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by RiverFarm View Post
    My brand was ShopRite's, since they didn't get in the kosher turkeys that I prefer this year. And I just checked more carefully and while I have a whole heart and liver, I only have a chunk of giblet. How odd. I wonder whether it takes too much time to clean them and they just do a - er - half-hearted job of it and chuck the rest, or use it for dog or cat food?
    Thanks, RiverFarm. Sorry about your gizzard being incomplete. Good question. I've heard that giblets may get "damaged" during the evisceration process, but I'm not sure if I believe it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by onilollaig View Post
    Thanks, mrswaz. Well, at least you probably got the proper weight in giblets.



    That's too bad. I guess you don't have a pet?
    Nope, no pets. One year I fried up the livers for DH, who really enjoyed them. But he really doesn't need to be chowing down on rich turkey livers right before a few days of gluttonous behavior.
    Merry: I don't think he knows about second breakfast, Pip.
    Pippin: What about elevenses? Luncheon? Afternoon tea? Dinner? Supper? He knows about them, doesn't he?


    I'm food bloggin' almost daily at Tummy Treasure!

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    Onilollaig, not to worry. I've got a bunch of goose, chicken and duck gizzards in my freezer that I really should do something with. Cleaning out the freezer is never a priority, though, unfortunately. If DH gets a deer I'm going to be scrambling for space!
    Last edited by RiverFarm; 11-22-2012 at 08:23 AM.
    Chacun à son goût!

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    I pulled out 2 hearts-1 large and 1 small, full liver, neck, and gizzard{?}. Strange you only got half. Maybe the other half is going to a pet food company?

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    Or maybe it got spoiled somehow. Once in a while when we're butchering chickens I'll accidentally break the bile sac. If it's easy to rinse off the liver I do that, but sometimes it seems to get everywhere and then I discard that part. Who knows what they do in those big poultry processing plants, though!
    Chacun à son goût!

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    We had a store brand (I didn't buy it so I forget which store, maybe Meijer) and a Butterball and neither had anywhere near a full set. One had a neck, maybe a quarter of a liver and half a giblet, and the other had a neck and a giblet.
    For those in touch with it, Reality is the leading cause of stress.

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    My family was also talking about giblets yesterday . . . my turkey had a neck, liver, gizzard, and TWO hearts. Either I had a mutant turkey, or they just grab some of the "parts" and toss them back into the bird.

  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by mrswaz View Post
    But he really doesn't need to be chowing down on rich turkey livers right before a few days of gluttonous behavior.
    Well, perhaps they'd fill him up enough to help avert the gluttonous behavior.

    Quote Originally Posted by RiverFarm View Post
    I've got a bunch of goose, chicken and duck gizzards in my freezer that I really should do something with.
    Maybe you should open up a business!

    Cleaning out the freezer is never a priority, though, unfortunately. If DH gets a deer I'm going to be scrambling for space!
    I know what you mean. If he gets a deer, it might have to sleep outside!

    Quote Originally Posted by vbak View Post
    I pulled out 2 hearts-1 large and 1 small, full liver, neck, and gizzard{?}. Strange you only got half. Maybe the other half is going to a pet food company?
    Thanks for the feedback. Yeah, I can't help wondering the same thing. Things are so often about money.

    Quote Originally Posted by RiverFarm View Post
    Or maybe it got spoiled somehow. Once in a while when we're butchering chickens I'll accidentally break the bile sac. If it's easy to rinse off the liver I do that, but sometimes it seems to get everywhere and then I discard that part. Who knows what they do in those big poultry processing plants, though!
    That's definitely a possibility.

    Quote Originally Posted by tovie View Post
    We had a store brand (I didn't buy it so I forget which store, maybe Meijer) and a Butterball and neither had anywhere near a full set. One had a neck, maybe a quarter of a liver and half a giblet, and the other had a neck and a giblet.
    Thanks for the feedback. So I guess even "regular" turkeys sometimes have this problem as well.

    Quote Originally Posted by BarbaraL View Post
    My family was also talking about giblets yesterday . . .
    Well, it's not nice to gossip about giblets.

    my turkey had a neck, liver, gizzard, and TWO hearts. Either I had a mutant turkey, or they just grab some of the "parts" and toss them back into the bird.
    Yes, I've heard that the giblets you get rarely come from the same bird that you buy.

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    Which Critter....?

    Onilollaig (what DOES that mean?),

    Yes, I've heard that the giblets you get rarely come from the same bird that you buy.
    I've also wondered whether when you bring an animal to the butcher you're actually getting your own animal back. We were pretty sure that was happening with our lambs, but with deer I'd have to wonder, there are so many hunters out there bringing their carcasses to the same place. That's another reason why we like to do our own.
    Chacun à son goût!

  19. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by RiverFarm View Post
    Onilollaig (what DOES that mean?),
    Well, I was trying to think of a user name, so I just picked an obscure English word . . . and spelled it backwards! LOL. The original word might even be obsolete, but it was basically an art term referring to various yellow pigments.

    I've also wondered whether when you bring an animal to the butcher you're actually getting your own animal back. We were pretty sure that was happening with our lambs, but with deer I'd have to wonder, there are so many hunters out there bringing their carcasses to the same place. That's another reason why we like to do our own.
    Very interesting. Never thought of that!

  20. #20
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    Huh, never heard of that term, and I'm a painter! Are you? And maybe it IS obsolete. It sounds Italian in origin, perhaps?
    Chacun à son goût!

  21. #21
    Quote Originally Posted by RiverFarm View Post
    Huh, never heard of that term, and I'm a painter!
    Maybe they discuss that term in courses about early art history? Anyway, here's an entry for it:

    http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/giallolino

    Are you?
    Oh, definitely not. I haven't painted for art since elementary school. That's pretty funny, though, that the first person to ask me about my user name is a real painter!

    And maybe it IS obsolete. It sounds Italian in origin, perhaps?
    Yes, it does seem to be Italian. Well, now you've learned a new art term that you can impress friends with.

  22. #22
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    Hard to see how I could fit that one in, even when talking to other artists! But it's a neat term.

    Cheers!
    Chacun à son goût!

  23. #23

    Turkey liver with fried eggs

    Oh my! It was so good. I rarely have liver because of cholesterol. But once a year I totally enjoy frying the turkey liver to dunk in fried eggs. YUM!!!

  24. #24
    Quote Originally Posted by RiverFarm View Post
    Hard to see how I could fit that one in, even when talking to other artists! But it's a neat term.
    How about: "Wow, the sun sure looks beautiful today. It reminds me of giallolino almost!"

    Quote Originally Posted by margeslp View Post
    Oh my! It was so good. I rarely have liver because of cholesterol. But once a year I totally enjoy frying the turkey liver to dunk in fried eggs. YUM!!!
    Sounds awesome. Actually, I don't believe that there is that much correlation between consumption of cholesterol and blood cholesterol. And remember how we were told by doctors for about 70 years that margarine was really better for us than butter? Another thing to keep in mind is that many of our forebears ate liver once a week--no doubt that tradition was passed down through the generations for good reasons. So, while I am careful about avoiding liver that isn't organic or free-range, I don't worry about the cholesterol itself in the least. I try to eat liver or some other organ meat at least once a week. It's very nutritious *and* tastes great! Speaking of turkey giblets, I used all mine to make a rice dish that I got from my mother, who got it from her mother. They sure do flavor it up well!
    Last edited by onilollaig; 12-01-2012 at 06:07 AM.

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