How about a Free Range Christmas Cockerel for your festive feast? It makes a great alternative to Turkey. Our Christmas Roosters are a very special chicken that is produced only once a year by Herb Fed Poultry in time for Christmas Day. These chickens are fed a diet of over 10 fresh herbs and are free to roam and graze acres of Yorkshire pasture. (Customers may have spotted some of their tasty free range chickens in the shop where they make a regular appearance on our counter)
Herb Fed was founded by Edward Wilkinson, chartered surveyor turned farmer! Edward left London in the credit crunch and with farming in his blood, returned to Yorkshire to develop his own business. He wanted to produce poultry of quality, but with a special difference that set it apart from others. He could also see the shift from mass produced supermarket meat, to a call for provenance and traceability.
About Herb Fed
They recognise the part husbandry plays in ensuring great tasting produce and the importance of knowing where your food has come from. heir birds are traditionally farmed, hand-fed and kept in small flocks so that they are truly free to forage for food and roam their Yorkshire pasture. These chickens also have something else rather special about them – their unique diet which includes over 10 varieties of fresh herbs.
On top of their natural cereal based feed, (which is free from additives and growth promoters), they have adapted our bird’s diet to include fresh herbs. The herbs are a by-product produced locally, by Edwards Aunt’s herb company – Herbs Unlimited.
Their great flavour and good eating has been recently recognised with a Great taste Award. Judged by over 500 of the most demanding palates, belonging to food critics, chefs, cooks, restaurateurs, buyers, retailers and producers, as well as a whole host of food writers and journalists, Great Taste is widely acknowledged as the most respected food accreditation scheme for artisan and speciality food producers.
“This cooks to a great golden colour, with alluring aromas, and the juices and skin have savoury depth. The breast meat is moist and firm and both brown and white meat have a rich, satisfying old-fashioned chicken flavour. A chicken that has been given time to fulfil its potential.”
Great Taste Judges
Ordering your Christmas Cockerel
Get in touch now to make sure you have what you need for a really tasty celebration. You can collect orders from our shop right up until Christmas Eve but to guarantee getting what you need please order in the shop. Come in and see us to discuss sizes and weights you might require.
To avoid any disappointment please place you order in the shop (we are not taking any orders by email or over the phone). Please note in these uncertain times we are asking all customers for a non-refundable deposit of £30.
Cooking Tips for a Christmas Cockerel
- Rub cockerel with olive oil or butter and season well.
- Squeeze half a lemon over the cockerel and place in cavity a few cloves of garlic, some roughly chopped carrot and celery and few herbs such as a bay leaf and a few thyme sprigs.
- Place in 200’C pre-heated oven breast side down for 20 min, reduce oven to 150’C turn cockerel over and baste. After another 30 mins baste again before returning to the oven, if you have time baste again then leave until cooked.
- Cooking times vary for weight, approximately 45 mins per kilo + a further 20 mins.
- Rest on a warmed plate breast side down under foil for at least 25 mins before serving.
Making Giblet Gravy
- Place giblets in a small casserole dish along with some celery, carrot, small onion all roughly chopped. Also place in a few sprigs of thyme a bay leaf and some parsley
- Cover with water and add to the oven when you put the oven on and then cook them alongside the cockerel.
- When your Christmas Cockerel has finished roasting and being rested claim all the juices from the roasting dish
- Remove most of the fat and place the pan or transfer the liquid to a saucepan over a hot heat
- Bring ,those juices in the pan to a sizzle and add a tablespoon of plain flour for thickening, mix with the juices to create a paste. If you prefer thinner gravy leave out the flour and reduce the liquid for a tasty jus.
- Add the giblet liquid to the pan slowly stirring to desired consistency.