Turkey for Thanksgiving or Christmas

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If you're looking for that perfect Thanksgiving or Christmas bird, here are a few places to try.

1. Your local butcher (Metzgerei). Go in a week or so before the big day and ask if you can order a turkey. Turkey in German is das Truthahn (and order is bestellen). The butcher in Thalwil, Kraus Metzgerei, is overrun with Americans in the week leading up to Thanksgiving.

2. A large Migros. Often you can order a fresh bird from the meat counter at Migros (and maybe Coop, although I've never tried). Be sure to check back with them frequently, as orders sometimes get misplaced. Large Migros will often have frozen turkeys in late November and through December.

3. Jemoli on Bahnhofstrasse in Zürich has fresh turkeys.


Be prepared to pay dearly for a turkey. A 5 kilo bird will run you Sfr 85 or more. At www.truthahn.ch they quote SFr16/kilo.

Turkeys here are small, and it is difficult to get one that weighs more than 6 kilos. Before you try to order a bigger bird, check the size of your oven. I can just barely squeeze a 6-kilo turkey into my fairly standard-size Swiss oven.

Not all turkeys will come with the giblets/liver/neck. Frozen turkeys almost certainly will not have these things. If you want them for gravy or stuffing, be sure to ask the butcher when you order the turkey.

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