What I would like you to know about Turkeys


I love turkeys! Well…. I love all animals but turkeys specifically are sooooo wonderful, intelligent, yet misunderstood and terribly mistreated. Please look at the articles below for more information on these wonderful birds, the terrible conditions they are subject to and how they suffer for the Thanksgiving holiday.

Some of the key points which I would like you to take from these articles include:

  • Turkeys like to eat breakfast and dinner together as a family. They have two main meal times, one mid-morning, the other mid-afternoon. Family units often come together for meals.
  • Mother turkeys are fiercely protective of their young, and will risk their lives to save their babies. If she senses a threat, a mother turkey sounds a specific warning cry to her brood that means only one thing: run for cover. She may also attack, or pretend to be wounded to distract the predator from her offspring.
  • When trust has been established, turkeys love to be stroked, snuggled and petted for long periods of time. When receiving such affection, many turkeys make a sound that can only be described as “purring.”
  • Benjamin Franklin proposed the turkey as the United States national bird.
  • Turkeys like to listen to music, especially classical, and will often sing along!
  • It is difficult to sneak up on a turkey. They have excellent vision and hearing, even though they have no external ears.
  • Male turkeys, called toms, love to feel noticed and admired. Toms on sanctuaries are known to follow busy human caretakers from chore to chore, standing off to the side, puffing out their exquisite feathers in a blast of scalloped ruffles, quietly and patiently waiting for the prospect of attention.




And now… To be sure we always keep things upbeat and positive, I have compiled some of my favorite cruelty-free recipes that will help you have a compassionate and very tasty Thanksgiving. These recipes are tested by yours truly and are truly delicious 🙂

This is one of the best dishes I have ever had, a plant-based meatloaf:


A super yummy (and healthy!) Brussel sprout salad:


This is also a great recipe I have made and super simple. Cauliflower is a wonderful and very versatile vegetable.

Roasted Cauliflower:


  • 1 clove garlic
  • zest and juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper (to taste)
  • 2 to 3 tbsp olive oil (or other oil of your choice)
  • 1 whole head Cauliflower

To make the dressing, crush the garlic over a large bowl. Add the lemon zest, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Whisk in the olive oil. Set aside while you prepare the cauliflower.

To start the cauliflower, preheat your oven to 450° degrees Fahrenheit. Remove the large florets from the cauliflower and cut them into even-sized pieces. Any of the very large florets can be sliced in half. Place the cauliflower into the dressing and toss to coat.

To roast the cauliflower, line a baking sheet with parchment paper or aluminum foil. Lay any flat pieces of cauliflower cut-side down, so they caramelize nicely. Roast for about 10 minutes before tossing. Return to the oven for about 3 or 4 minutes or until it is almost cooked through.

Transfer to a serving dish and enjoy.

And, I just have to share this one. I recently took a Vegan Food Immersion with Vegan Fusion (it was an amazing experience and will share more about this soon) and we made this incredible Onion Gravy. This would be excellent on mashed potatoes or you could even try it over biscuits, pasta, rice or tofu. Yum!! You must try it!

Onion Gravy:

onion gravy

Makes 4 cups

  • 1/4 cup brown rice flour (another flour would work too, brown rice flour is gluten-free)
  • 1/4 cup + 1 tbsp safflower oil
  • 1 1/2 cups onion, half-moon slices (you could make this a bit smaller if you wish)
  • 3/4 cup thinly sliced shiitake mushrooms
  • 4 tsp. garlic, minced
  • 2 1/2 cups water or veggie stock
  • 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1/4 cup wheat-free tamari or soy sauce
  • 1 Tbsp dried or fresh sage, minced (you could also replace the sage with fresh minced herbs like parsley, dill or basil)
  • 1/2 tsp fresh ground black pepper
  • sea salt to taste
  1. Create a roux by combining the brown rice flour and 1/4 cup of the oil in small bowl and whisk well
  2. Place remaining tbsp of oil in a sauce pan on medium high heat. Add onion, mushrooms, and garlic and cook until onions are translucent, approximately 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Add water, nutritional yeast, tamari, sage, and bring to a boil, stirring frequently. Reduce heat to simmer, add roux, and stir constantly until sauce thickens. add salt and pepper to taste.

Another dish from the Vegan Fusion class, super healthy and delicious!!

Roasted Root Vegetable Salad:

Courtesy Vegan Fusion World Cuisine

roasted root veggies

Serves 2-4

  • 3 tbsp melted coconut or olive oil
  • 1/2 cup water or veggie stock
  • 6 cups assorted root vegetables, chopped (parsnips, beet, sweet potato, carrot, Jerusalem artichoke, celeriac or other root vegetable, you can add whatever variety you feel!)
  • 1/2 cup fennel bulb, chopped
  • 1 tbsp minced garlic
  • 1 tsp sea salt, or to taste
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper, ground to taste
  • 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2 tbsp fresh herbs, minced (parsley, dill, and or basil)
  • 2 tbsp tamari or soy sauce, or to taste
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  1. Preheat oven to 375° F. Rinse vegetables well and chop into 1/2′ cubes. Combine vegetables, oil, fennel, garlic, salt, pepper, and crushed red pepper flakes, in a 9″ x 13″ casserole dish and mix well.
  2. Bake until all vegetables are cooked through, approximately 45 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  3. Remove from the oven, cool for 5 minutes, add remaining ingredients and mix well before serving.

Finally, as a reminder….. be sure to give some thought to and express what you are thankful for this Thanksgiving. Continue to express this gratitude for all our many blessings each day, year-round.  This could change your life! Practicing gratitude on a regular basis has some amazing benefits to your physical and mental health.

Hope you and your loved ones have a wonderful Tofurkey Day!!! 🙂

5 thoughts on “What I would like you to know about Turkeys

  1. Eastin,
    Your posts are both entertaining and inspiring. I am eating far less meat than before, and appreciate the leadership you provide in living a cruelty-free lifestyle. Bravo!

    • Awwww…. thank you so much for the words of encouragement Frank!! I am so proud of you! This stuff is so much fun and there are so many options for us now. Why should we cause unnecessary suffering? Just makes sense to me! Hugs to you and your pretty lady!! XOXO

      • You bet. Cruelty free is important, and it’s so rewarding, like a little personal victory. Keep up the great work. Send me an email to work if like; would like to catch up about that too. Your blog is awesome. Will tell Kirin hi for you!

  2. Sarah, I read your turkey information out loud to Peter while he is cooking for me. He has cooked every night during his stay – all vegetarian, just for his mom. Sweet, eh? And he is a great cook. Happy Thanksgiving to you. Love, Lisa

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: