Butchering geese ? hints, tips ect

Discussion in 'Geese' started by CelticOaksFarm, Nov 21, 2012.

  1. CelticOaksFarm

    CelticOaksFarm Family owned, family run

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    We have raised and butchered quail, rabbit, chicken and duck in the past. This is our first year with geese for such a task. Those who also butcher do you have tip, tricks, techniques, finishing diets you prefer ect? just looking for insight on geese specifically as we gear up for time to butcher.

    Anything you did in the past that didn't work, or you wouldn't bother with again as its not worth the extra effort?
     
  2. Goose and Fig

    Goose and Fig Grateful Geese

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    I've been researching this myself, as if I would ever have the courage to actually do it. One thing that seems to stand out is that you should dry pluck, and its very time consuming.
     
  3. Oregon Blues

    Oregon Blues Overrun With Chickens

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    I just did 2 geese 2 days ago.

    Geese tend to get too fat, so I don't give them any corn or bread. There is no problem with fattening them up; the problem is keeping the fat off to keep them healthy. The fat will get all wrapped around the intestines and fill the body cavity. That can't be good for them.

    Scalding them is a booger. They are waterproof and the down is so thick that it is difficult to get water down to the skin. I use a large kitchen spoon to push the feathers up to get the water in there. Scalding takes longer. Water at 160 degrees is what I use. Give extra soaking to the lower abdomen. That's where the feathers really resist water.

    My plucker won't get all the small undercoat feathers. It does some feathers, so it is worth using, but there is plenty of hand plucking left to do. I did not use duck wax this time, for only 2 birds, it didn't seem worth it. Duck wax would be almost mandatory if the birds had any pin feathers. Even with duck wax, I will hand pluck as much as I can get off. The fewer feathers in the wax, the easier it is to clean the wax so it can be used again.

    The wings look scrawny and they need lots of plucking, but don't just cut them off. The wings are the best tasting part of the goose.

    The body cavity is very easy to clean. It's nice and big and you can get your hand in there easily. I split the neck skin and cut the trachea loose from the neck. Otherwise is it nearly impossible to pull through.

    I wrap with several layers of butcher paper and freezer tape.
     
  4. Oregon Blues

    Oregon Blues Overrun With Chickens

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    My son, who chops heads off will hold the goose by the legs and just hold them out away from his body until they stop flapping. They don't really weigh all that much and the flapping isn't violent. They could be hung somewhere that the wings can't touch anything solid.
     
  5. jdywntr

    jdywntr Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I processed 2 of mine on Monday. Had every intention of plucking but gave up and ended up skinning them.

    I have processed all birds (muscovy, chicken, geese) the same way. I hang them by their legs, above the foot and any toes they may have and gently place them upside down (I don't have a cone). The geese didn't even struggle. I slit the jugular on both sides with a scalpel and hold the head to help the bleed out, then the wings to prevent thrashing. I skinned and parted them both out. I can't bring myself to chop off the head, maybe one day but not yet.

    For Christmas, I'm going to try plucking again but we'll see. I get very impatient.
     
  6. CelticOaksFarm

    CelticOaksFarm Family owned, family run

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    OB I have read to add a drop or two of dawn to the scald water for geese to help get the feathers truly wet. Have you done this? If so how did it work out?

    We are shopping around for pluckers right now as well. Currently hand plucking since most if not all is done for our own use. Would like to hear what you use and what you do and dont like about it.
     
  7. Oregon Blues

    Oregon Blues Overrun With Chickens

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    Yes, it helps to add dish soap to the scald water.

    I've got an EZPlucker. It works best if 2-3 birds go in at the same time. That helps them tumble. The geese are too big to put more than one in at a time, so they don't come out completely clean. If the scald is good, the plucker will get all the feathers it can reach.

    I did not buy the largest size of EZPlucker. They have larger ones that are advertised as big enough to do a turkey. They cost substantially more, so I am making do with the chicken size one.

    Duck wax will strip the goose nice and clean. It's a bit expensive by the time you add in shipping. So I only use it for pin feathers that are nearly impossible to hand pluck because the more feathers you get in the wax, the more difficult it is to clean up enough to use it again. I bought from Blended Waxes. That was the best price I could find.
     
  8. CelticOaksFarm

    CelticOaksFarm Family owned, family run

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    Fantastic info, hadnt looked at wax yet, but will be adding it to the list for sure. had looked at the EZPlucker line, there is someone here in FL who is a distributer for them. We scald using a turkey frier, but thinking a goose may not fit so well in it. LOL need to look at that for sure.
     
  9. psue

    psue Chillin' With My Peeps

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    we use a turkey fryer to dip all of our birds.... and Mom is an awesome plucker... she can't gut so thats my job :) So far we have done everyone by hand and did use a BBQ spatula to help get he water into the feathers. Would like to try the Dawn and duck wax tricks. Keeping the heart and liver is easy if your incline. The "mountain oysters" are also easy to keep. How ever the gizzards are not worth it in mom's opion and she loves them.
     
  10. CelticOaksFarm

    CelticOaksFarm Family owned, family run

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    We feed the heart and liver to the Pyrenees from the butchers. He gets 1 bird per butcher too, I roast them and strip the meat off, then for the next few days he gets it on top of his food. Good to know the turkey fryer can take a goose in it.
     

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