1st trip to freezer camp complete!

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by acheeknmanbestfren, May 3, 2009.

  1. acheeknmanbestfren

    acheeknmanbestfren Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 10, 2009
    Whew, what a process! My son and I completed butchering our first 5 Cornish-X this afternoon. All day yesterday I was apprehensive as I have never butchered (or for that matter purposely killed) an animal. Spent a good part of the day getting things set up and purchasing the needed materials.

    I had culled the 5 camp attendees yesterday morning so they'd be ready to go for today. My son and I went out to do the deed. I grabbed the first hen, put her in the cone and cut the artery. Unfortunately since I'd not done this before I really didn't have a feel for how much cutting would be required so when she started to bleed I quit cutting. The only part of the day I feel badly about was I didn't cut her enough so she lasted much longer than I would have liked. I finally deepened the cut and she expired shortly there after. Lesson learned, I made sure to do a better job for the balance of the campers.

    We used melted paraffin in the scalding water and boy did it make a difference. Made plucking very quick (forgot to add additional paraffin once and plucking was much more tedious).

    On to the cleaning. Though it got easier with each bird, I still need practice but I was fortunate I didn't have any fecal leaks or bile duct rupturing - yeah!

    I cut one bird into pieces and left the others whole - they're soaking in ice water now!

    That's our story - wasn't as bad as I expected though the smell of wet feathers isn't what I would call pleasant! 5 down, 14 to go!
  2. Southernbelle

    Southernbelle Gone Broody

    Mar 17, 2008

    I never tried the paraffin trick and it sounds worth trying! I hate plucking chickens - that's why I stick with quail or rabbit for white meat, so maybe I'll give chicken another try.
  3. Judy

    Judy Chicken Obsessed Staff Member Premium Member

    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    Yeah, the wet feathers don't smell too good.

    Some skin them to avoid plucking. Evidently is much easier and works great -- if you don't like to eat the skin....
  4. obsessed

    obsessed Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 3, 2008
    Slidell, LA
    Congrats. You did an awesome job. Just think how great they will taste.
  5. Mahonri

    Mahonri Urban Desert Chicken Enthusiast Premium Member

    May 14, 2008
    North Phoenix
    My Coop
    Plucking? That's why I've always just skinned the birds.
  6. Birchwood

    Birchwood Out Of The Brooder

    Apr 17, 2009
    Southern Vermont
    Would someone please explain the paraffin in the boiling water to me please!! I(or my husband) plan to butcher in acouple weeks. All helpful hints would be much appreciated!
  7. acheeknmanbestfren

    acheeknmanbestfren Out Of The Brooder

    Mar 10, 2009
    I just bought a box of canning paraffin, there are 4 rectangles of paraffin in each box. As we were heating up the scalding water I added a full bar.

    When the water heated to between 140 and 150 the paraffin melted pretty quickly. When dunking the bird, the paraffin attaches itself to the feathers and then hardens when the bird is dunked in the ice water. When we started to pluck, the feathers came out both easily and in big groups.

    For subsequent birds I added 1/2 stick and that seemed to be enough to work for the rest of the birds.
  8. ohiofarmgirl

    ohiofarmgirl Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jan 22, 2009
    great work! and excellent advice on the paraffin.. we'll have to give it a go.

    and no - its not as bad as you work yourself up about. the hard thing is explaining to OTHER people that its just not that bad.

    happy eatin'!
  9. Judy

    Judy Chicken Obsessed Staff Member Premium Member

    Feb 5, 2009
    South Georgia
    Quote:So glad there is no one in my life I feel I have to explain this to....
  10. rufus

    rufus Overrun With Chickens

    May 17, 2007
    Butchering is one of those things that hangs in the memory. I think it is the smell.


BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by