Is Ham or Turkey Better for Christmas Dinner? Some Thoughts on the Ongoing Debate

December 12, 2018 10:44 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

Turkey is the Thanksgiving food in the United States. While there are some people who go for alternative main courses, there’s no denying that a turkey dinner is absolutely iconic for the November holiday.

For Christmas, however, there’s a bit more variance. Many households in America are turkey houses, while others opt for ham dinners. While there are, again, some alternative main courses some people serve, turkey and deli ham in Williamsport, PA are far and away the two most popular main course items for Christmas dinner. In fact, one study indicates Americans consume about 22 million turkeys on Christmas, and about 318 million pounds of ham during the holiday season.

While it’s hard to objectively say either option is “better,” there are certainly some factors that could make you lean one way or the other. Here’s a quick look at some of those factors, from your local butcher shop:

  • Tradition: Turkey likely wins in the tradition category. It has been a staple of feasts since the 1600s in Europe, and by the Victorian Era had surpassed the goose for the most popular main course item at Christmas feasts. Pigs were not nearly as “exotic” as turkey and could be eaten at pretty much any time, so the turkey became the go-to item for fancier occasions, such as Christmas feasts.
  • Health: Many people presume poultry is automatically going to be healthier than other types of meat, but this isn’t necessarily the case. If you’re looking at fat content, for example, turkey in Williamsport, PA has more than twice as much fat content per 100 grams as ham does, though ham does have higher sodium content. So really, with regard to health, it depends on the primary characteristic you’re looking at, but in terms of fat, ham easily wins.
  • Versatility: How many recipes are available for turkey and deli ham in Williamsport, PA? This one looks like a wash—you’ll find “old family recipes” of all sorts for turkey and ham, as well as plenty of things to do with the leftovers.
  • Price: How much can you expect to pay for a full-sized ham versus a feast-sized turkey? The prices vary from year to year depending on the availability of the animal, but as a general rule you can expect to pay a fair amount less per pound for a turkey than you will for a ham, giving you more for your money. This can be especially beneficial if you’re holding a feast for a large extended family or friend group.
  • Taste: This is the area where it’s hardest to judge, because taste is completely subjective. However, outside the holiday season, Americans eat pork three times more than they eat turkey, though this could be largely because turkey in Williamsport, PA has developed a reputation as being a holiday special, or a meal for special occasions. We’ll call this one a draw.

Whichever you decide, we’re happy to help you out with your turkey or ham dinner this holiday season. Contact Tony’s Delicatessen & Fresh Meats or visit our butcher shop for more information.

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