butchering layers?

green machine

In the Brooder
7 Years
Mar 6, 2012
I have 6 layers that Im planning to butcher. 3 rhode island reds and 3 silver laced wyndottes.

They decent birds for meat?

What type of tub do you guys use to scald them? any input or advice for a first timer?
We just took a big boiling pot of water outside and dumped it into a 5 gallon bucket. We dunked the. Birds in that. You need to make sure not to cook the birds. Have everything ready before you bring the hot water out. The birds you have are both egg layers and meat birds.

How old are the birds? Older birds may need to be cooked a little different than a younger bird.
the birds about just about a year old or around 14 months but not older.

I have my grandmother who spent her whole life on a farm, coming out to show us the ropes.

we planned to grill the chicken using the beer can chicken stand. plan to grill up 2 that day, then freeze the rest for later.
Let the birds rest before freezing - a couple of days in the fridge. The meat will be more tender. That's what Ive been told about broilers so it makes sense to do the same for older birds.
Have fun with grandma !
Age of layers just means different cooking. I butchered some ameracana's last week and though not alot of meat still tasty and free compared to throwing it out.

So if the layers are older use moist cooking like stewing and such to tender it up. You can also use meat tenderizer.
Oh I guess I missed the input part.

My 2 cents.

I didn't have a pot big enough for scalding and I didn't relish plucking.

So for our first time we just skinned. We watched a few video's online and combined them for the following which isn't super efficient but it worked for us and didn't need any special equipment.

First we set up with a clean plastic table. with a large bowl and two sharp paring knives though I'm sure there are better knives to use. We also had a trash can with a large black yard bag in it and a tray we had laying around about 2'x3' supposed to be used to mix concrete but any catch basin would work. We had chairs and a towel.

First get the bird lay them in your lap upside down (this usually calms them). Wrap the bird in the towel snuggly. Then my husband would hold out his head and we slit the throat draining the blood into the catch basin (dog later cleans this basin). Wait a few minutes for death throws.

Move to table. I cut off head and feet while hubby finds vent does some careful cutting around there. Run hand up inside pulling out the innards with those you want to keep go into bowl. I clean heart, gizzard and liver while he skins. We end up throwing out the very tip of the wing think last knuckle.

We don't eat the skin anyway and this didn't require anything extra or special and we are able to set up and break down easily. If I was doing 100 birds might do it differently but it works for us and we haven't put out a lot of money for pots, coolers, or pluckers. Of course if you want the skin then you'd want to scald and pluck.

Edited to add: we then put them in a cheap plastic bag (8 gallon trash can liner really thin and cheap). Throw them in the fridge for several days and freeze in a thick bag that comes with the vacuum sealer. We did break down and buy a vacuum sealer to protect all of our hard work as we also did 25 meaties last winter.
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I bought a propane turkey fryer with a big pot. With that we are able to keep the water at the proper temp.

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