In a year in which many of our dining habits have been upended, Thanksgiving still means turkey. And if you’re cooking your own, you may want to opt for a fresh (i.e. not frozen) bird.
At Kerber's Farm in Huntington, manager Mimi Ewald said that orders are about where they were last year, though the most popular size is the smallest, 12 pounds. But, she said "there are plenty of people having small Thanksgivings who are still ordering big turkey — I guess they want the leftovers." Merrill Zorn, owner of Zorn’s in Bethpage, noted that while the size of parties has diminished, there will probably be more people cooking at home rather than celebrating in restaurants.
Fresh turkeys are in limited supply, so it’s wise to order one early and pick it up during Thanksgiving week. Butchers and specialty markets often sell fresh turkeys, but there's something about picking one up at a farm that makes it even more festive. Here is a selection of local farms (or former farms) that specialize in fresh turkeys.
Kerber's Farm in Huntington brings in their fresh turkeys from Maryland. Birds from 12 to 22 pounds can be preordered for $5.49 a pound. You'll pay a $50 deposit now and choose a three-hour pickup window from Nov. 24 to Thanksgiving morning at 309 W. Pulaski Rd., Huntington, 631-423-4400, kerbersfarm.com.
Makinajian Poultry Farm in Huntington is a turkey mainstay and preordering is recommended. Turkeys range from 10 to 30 pounds and price is $5.49 a pound. Pick up is Nov. 23 to 25 at 276 Cuba Hill Rd., Huntington, 631-368-9320.
Mecox Bay Dairy in Bridgehampton takes turkey reservations on its website. Turkeys are raised on pasture and range between 18 and 30 pounds. Price is $5.85 a pound Pick up your bird Nov. 24 to 25 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at 855 Mecox Rd., Bridgehampton, 631-537-0335, mecoxbaydairy.com/turkey-orders
Miloski's Poultry Farm in Calverton does not accept preorders; fresh turkeys will be on sale at the store from Nov. 21 to 25. Sizes range from 10 to 30 pounds and the price is $5.50 a pound. Cash only. 4418 Middle Country Rd., Calverton, 631-727-0239, miloskispoultryfarm.com.
North Sea Farm in Southampton is offering turkeys from 14 to 25 pounds ($5.35 a pound) as well as whole bone-in breasts ($7.99 a pound) and legs, wings and thighs ($5.99). Order by calling or stopping in the store; pickup from Nov. 21 to 26 (open from 8 to 10 a.m. on Thanksgiving Day). 1060 Noyack Rd., Southampton, 631-283-0735.
Raleigh's Poultry Farm in Kings Park will have fresh turkeys available in three cuts: whole ($5.25 a pound for birds 10 to 30 pounds), bone-in breast ($5.99 a pound) and boneless breast ($6.99 a pound). Orders open Nov. 3 for pickup at 335 Old Indian Head Rd., Kings Park, 631-269-4428, raleighsfarm.com.
Zorn's started out as a poultry farm in 1930, but encroaching Bethpage eventually forced the business to raise the birds elsewhere. For the last 30 or so years, they have been raised at the same Midwestern farm, to Zorn's specifications. Fresh turkeys are $2.09 a pound for 14 to 24 pounds, $2.39 a pound for 26 to 28 pounds. No preorders, pick up your turkey from Nov. 20 to 26 (Zorn's is open from 9 a.m. to noon on Thanksgiving Day.) 321 Hempstead Tpke., Bethpage, 516-731-5500, zornsofbethpage.com