Butchers at Leeds' Kirkgate Market reveals what Christmas shoppers are ordering instead of turkey

A Kirkgate Market butcher revealed that people in Leeds are swaying away from the traditional Christmas turkey in favour of something quirkier.

Malcolm Leary, 50, of Malcolm Michaels Quality Butchers
Malcolm Leary, 50, of Malcolm Michaels Quality Butchers

Butchers at Malcolm Michaels Quality Butchers said that although they still think they'll sell over 500 turkeys this Christmas, they've seen an increase in shoppers going for something a bit different.

Adrian Thorpe, who's worked at the butcher's since he was 14, said he gets unusual requests all the time now.

Mr Thorpe, 47, said: "This year I'm doing a request for one lady who wants a duck with the backbone taking out, stuffed inside with turkey thigh meat, cranberries, stuffing and sausage meat. But she wants the legs and the wings left on so it still looks a duck.

Malcolm Leary, 50, of Malcolm Michaels Quality Butchers

"Ducks, pheasants, partridge, venison, partridge geese, you name it - people want it."

Malcolm Leary, of Malcolm Michaels, said he has noticed that more and more people want lamb for Christmas dinner, a type of meat more typically associated with Easter.

Mr Leary, 50, said that although it is traditional to have turkey, beef and pork lots of people are now just having lamb.

Despite lamb being an expensive cut of meat, Mr Leary believes that people will always push the boat out for Christmas.

Adrian Thorpe, 47, from Malcom Micheals Quality Butchers

This is also why he thinks that no matter the current trends, that tradition will also win out.

He said: "People go crazy at Christmas, they'll have about five different meats. It's almost obscene what people go with.

"I think people will go for their favourite meats but won't be able to stay away from tradition, they'll just have the turkey as well."

The versatile meat can be cooked in lots of different ways such as butter under the skin of the breast, cooked upside down or with lemons and oranges added for flavour.

In the video, Mr Leary describes his own perfected recipe for the ultimate turkey dinner.

He layers streaky bacon rashers on the top, adds sausage meat at the front and sage and onion and the back end of the bird.

And what meats will the butchers have on their Christmas tables this year? Quite a lot it seems.

Malcolm is opting for three main types of meat and having a loin of pork, loin of beef and a turkey with sausage meat.

Adrian is adding an extra meat into the mix. He is having a turkey crown, pork loin, beef loin and a nice piece of horseshoe gammon.

Both said they'll be indulging in all the trimmings, including lots of cranberry sauce, brussels sprouts and lots of pigs in blankets.

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