Best Tasting Chicken Breed

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by weaveagarden, Jul 18, 2009.

  1. FrenchHen

    FrenchHen Chicken Ambassador

    Jan 26, 2009
    Bagshot Row
    Michael Pollan wrote a book called The Omnivore's Dilemma in which he describes visiting Polyface Farms (Google that or Joel Salatin) in West Virginia. He worked with pastured chickens there, and describes them as having a stronger chicken flavor. I think those are Cornish Crosses, but they're raised differently than factory chicken.
  2. weaveagarden

    weaveagarden Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 4, 2009
    Hoquiam, Wa
    Actually, the Omnivore's Dilemma was one of the things that got me going on this journey of starting to raise my own meat. That is interesting that it may have been Cornish X. I am going to go back and do some checking.

    I listened to it on audio. Days of material as it is unabridged.

    I still think I want to explore other breeds. I have been reading about Rangers. I am not sure what I will do. The amount of time til butcher is certainly an issue to consider. Sounds like the Rangers are only a couple of weeks longer and don't have the leg issues. And of course the ability to put them in my extra large back yard to take care of bugs and utilize all of the seed heads that I allow to develop there is a plus.

    But I am also not against raising another breed that takes longer. I would just do less of them, and simply raise them with my hens. I had already planned to get some cuckoo Marens for the eggs next year. Maybe I will just buy more of them and get straight run and use the roos for meat.

    Still interested in opinions. Never wrong to consider more info from others.
  3. FrenchHen

    FrenchHen Chicken Ambassador

    Jan 26, 2009
    Bagshot Row
    I think, were we to do it again, that I'd order some Cornish Crosses plus some straight run Buff Orpingtons or another heavy, dual purpose breed. That way we have immediate chicken (well, in a couple of months), plus a self-replenishing flock of egg layers and roosters for the table.
    The Omnivore's Dilemma is what got me started raising meat birds as well. We had laying hens before that, but not dinner birds. I raised 5 Cornish Crosses, but one died before we could process them. I think it was a casualty of it's breed.
  4. newchickens2009

    newchickens2009 Chillin' With My Peeps

    May 18, 2009
    This Is A Great Post Has I Am Asking The Same Question Myself. I Have No Access To Cornish X But Do To Dels, Orpins, White Rock N Rir. Which Of These In You Guys Opinion Is Best For Meat? Tks For Any Advice In Advance And God Bless You!!
  5. Kezzie

    Kezzie Chillin' With My Peeps

    Feb 15, 2009
    Coastal Georgia
    Quote:It would be interesting to know how many people started raising their own chickens because of the Omnivore's Dilemma. I'm also one of them.

    You would have to separate your meaties from your laying flock no matter what, wouldn't you? The layers will be getting calcium and the meaties would need a higher protein food, right?
  6. PurpleChicken

    PurpleChicken Tolerated.....Mostly

    Apr 6, 2007
    I find that silkies, while not as plump as a cornish, have excellent flavor and texture.
  7. jvls1942

    jvls1942 Chicken Obsessed

    Oct 16, 2008
    chicken tastes like chicken.. personnally I cannot distinguish one breed from another by taste..
  8. Bossroo

    Bossroo Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 15, 2008
    The flavor in any meat comes from the amount of fat that it contains and tenderness is related to this as well as the amount of activity the animal had during it's lifetime. For the chicken the flavor is also enhanced through the amount of fat deposited in and under it's skin. We used to raise RIR and Barred Rocks and sometimes other dual purpose breeds for decades untill I discovered the Cornish X a few years ago. I must say that the feed conversion rate is much superior for this bird and the amount of meat produced in a much shorter period of time ( like 1/2 to 2/3 less) is second to none. Then too, I save myself a month or two from guarding the chickens from the numerous coyotes and other predators. Also, I find that if I feed them additional cracked corn for the last week or two, they lay down a very nice layer of fat between their muscles and in their skin thereby giving a very rich mouthwatering flavor ( just like, and more, what I used to get from the much older RIR or Barred Rock ) and very tender morcels of meat. I will not go back to the dual purpose breeds. I enjoy the extra 8weeks time off between batches and harvest twice the amount of meat with tons of flavor, so why bother.
  9. Steve_of_sandspoultry

    Steve_of_sandspoultry Overrun With Chickens

    Quote:That is a suprise to me, I can taste a huge difference in store bought vs cornish cross vs a heritage breed. Do you use alot of sauce?

    Steve in NC
  10. jaku

    jaku Chillin' With My Peeps

    Quote:That is a suprise to me, I can taste a huge difference in store bought vs cornish cross vs a heritage breed. Do you use alot of sauce?

    Steve in NC

    I wonder if you could in a blind test though?? Haha, in college, we all thought Natural Light was cheap, nasty beer and Bud Light was much better. Then we did a blind taste test in plastic cups and no one could tell the difference.

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