WHOLE CHICKENS, One 6-7lb bird — New Hampshire or Barred Plymouth Rock
Whole Chickens One 6-7lb bird Barred Plymouth Rock or New Hampshire
Humanely raised on pasture
100% antibiotic free
Raised by Frank Reese on Good Shepherd Poultry Ranch
All vegetarian fed
“A chicken is no better than the farmer behind it. And the genetics, of course,” says Frank Reese, whose chickens are one of the only flocks in America to receive certification by the American Poultry Association, and the USDA, as 100% purebred Heritage, standards that were set in 1873 to define and defend best practices in American farming.
“My birds are harvested at a normal age and maturity, and having that maturity brings taste, flavor, texture. The industry has removed that. All the industrial chickens have salt water added – they call it flavor enhancers — what people are used to now, the taste of chicken they think they love, is mostly just added salt.”
Frank is a true hero of the heritage food movement and he has been featured in publications ranging from The New York Times to National Geographic as the foremost poultry expert in the U.S. His story is the reason why when it comes to meat, the word “heritage” is synonymous with “heirloom.” Good Shepherd chickens can be traced back over 100 years, are 100% antibiotic free, and pasture raised on the Kansas prairie. This is by far the juiciest, most flavorful bird on the market today.
Our Heritage breed chickens are unlike what you may very well be used to: they taste different from supermarket chickens, they look different, and even need to be cooked differently (low and slow) to bring out their wonderfully intense, natural chicken flavor.
Tamar Adler, in Vogue magazine, writes, "And the flavors! I am stunned by the Plymouth Rock, which smells like hay and has a marigold-yellow, pork-style fat cap beneath its skin. Its flesh is silky and grassy, bringing to mind smoked sablefish. The New Hampshire has meat that is almost lavender and tastes closer to an oyster, or perhaps Lardo di Colonnata cured in ancient marble, than to any chicken I’ve ever eaten. It’s rich in umami, that indescribable flavor in soy sauce, Parmesan cheese, truffles, and aged meat."
This could never be said of a supermarket chicken!
And while Frank Reese raises dozens of different breeds (we update our website frequently with fresh offerings) we have chosen to focus on three of our favorites, the Plymouth Barred Rock, Cornish, and the New Hampshire, all of which are considered endangered species.
Cornish: The Cornish was developed in England around the 1820s as a fighting bird. The breed grew very slowly, but developed extremely strong, solid muscles and larger breasts than other standard breeds, making it a meatier alternative. The Cornish was accepted into the American Poultry Association in 1898 .
Barred Plymouth Rock: This 150-year-old breed is the king of meat production. It is the ultimate broiler chicken and a member of the American Poultry's Standards of Perfection. This was the original chicken produced in the United States.
New Hampshire: This breed is a close cousin to the Rhode Island Red Chicken breed and was developed in New England – primarily in Massachusetts and New Hampshire. The New Hampshire chicken was recognized by the American Poultry Association as a standard breed in 1935. These medium sized chickens are known to be competitive and aggressive and are desired for their meat.