John Madden still celebrates the holidays with Turducken
21 years ago Glenn Mistich introduced John Madden, and by extension the country, to a Louisiana original, the Turducken. Mitstich, who runs Gourmet Butcher Block in Gretna with his wife, was summoned before the December 7th Rams game by WWL’s Bob Delgiorno to bring the voice of football the frankenbird. Madden immediately fell in love.
“I got a phone call the next day. Guy says 'hey, man, it’s John Madden here, and I really like your turducken.' I said, 'it’s got to be one of my friends messing with me,' but it wasn’t, it was really him. That year he said we’re going to send a camera crew and want that turducken to be the official food for the All-Madden Team.”
Turduckens are a culinary Russian Easter egg, where a turkey is stuffed with a chicken that’s been stuffed with a duck.
After becoming a holiday staple on FOX Football broadcasts with Madden, the local business took off, and now ships about a thousand birds out nationwide, along with thousands for locals.
“It just snowballed, we’ve been on Super Bowls, and we’ve been on Thanksgiving Day games with a six legged turducken, and it’s just phenomenal what it has done to this business and the industry in Louisiana.”
The retired Madden may not be broadcasting the tradition on national TV these days, but he still gets a bird sent to him twice a year by the grateful Mistich. The butcher says Madden is the only man on earth who gets the iconic, and now exclusive six legged turducken, and in return…
“We get a note, a Christmas card from him and his wife every year. If he’s got a friend in his office and they’re talking about it when it gets there, he calls me and says oh I’ve got somebody here who’s interested in this turducken. So we hear from him quite often.”
Emeril Lagasse will be cooking this year’s FOX NFL feast before the Saints/Falcons game kicks off tomorrow at 7:20PM.