Chewy Texture

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by Chickiemama1010, Jul 19, 2010.

  1. Chickiemama1010

    Chickiemama1010 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 16, 2010
    Sullivan
    We just has our spare roos processed and yesterday we ate one for the first time. It was delicious, but it seemed to be chewy and stringy and the breasts were really small. Also there was almost zero fat on them. Is this because they were roosters? or because they were australorps not cornish cross? Maybe because they had more muscles and less fat than factory farm grocery store chickens have since they are out and about not locked up in cages? Or maybe its what they eat - chicken feed, appropriate treats, and whatever they forage (bugs and lawn plants) - not corn corn corn to fatten them up like factory farm poultry
    They were fairly young, 4months old. Theyre much more flavorful than any chicken i have ever eaten. I have had duck before from a grocery store, and then duck my husband got hunting. HUGE difference in flavor and texture. I chalked that up to wild mallards vs domestic pekins. Perhaps this is the same scenario. Im just curious.
    By the way, I quartered the bird then brined and grilled the meat with a rub. Yum. I wasnt expecting "grocery store" chicken. but the texture was enough to make me question if it was cooked all the way. Meat thermometer confirmed. Also the meat really stuck to the bones. I am used to it pulling off easily, but not the case with our backyard chicken. Is this normal?
     
  2. rungirl

    rungirl Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Put them in the refrigerator for a couple days. The first time we butchered, we ate one the same day and it was chewy. They need a little aging to tenderize, like a steak. The next one we ate was fine though, because it was in the fridge for a while. We've done cornish x, but we'll be doing some extra EE roosters next week. They don't look as meaty or fat, but the fair is over and they're getting mean now, so I'm inviting them to dinner!
     
  3. Chickiemama1010

    Chickiemama1010 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    they were in the fridge for 5-6 days before they went to the freezer. The one we ate yesterday was never frozen. I left him out b/c I knew he was sunday dinner. He had been dead for 9 days at that point
     
  4. dancingbear

    dancingbear Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Meat hybrids like the Cornish X are usually butchered between 6 and 10 weeks old. the older they get, the less tender the meat is, and the more developed the connective tissues will be. Other breeds, such as the ones you have, tend to get tougher, younger, because they don't pack on the fat like the meat hybrids.

    Yours were about 16 weeks old, so they won't be as tender as a supermarket bird, unless you cook them differently. Grilling, frying, and other quick-cooking methods are probably the worst to use for these birds. However, you can fillet the breasts and thighs, grill or fry those, and they'll be fine. The skin on older birds like this tends to be tough if quick cooked, so I'd remove the skin to fry or grill. I leave it on for other methods. You can cook the rest of the bird in the crock pot and use the meat for any recipe that calls for cooked chicken meat, such as tacos, enchiladas, pot pie, or whatever. You can also slow roast whole birds, for a 16 week old, I'd suggest trying 300F for maybe 3 hrs., in a roaster with a lid, or in an oven bag, so it doesn't dry out.

    You might find this helpful.
    http://www.albc-usa.org/documents/cookingwheritagechicken.pdf
     
  5. Chickiemama1010

    Chickiemama1010 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    we are getting some meaties eventually, likely in the spring, unless I can convince hubby to get that meaty pen built for me before the weather gets too cool. And yes, the skin was really tough and rubbery. we left it on for moisture retention during grilling, since there was literally NO fat, but we did not eat it. They were very tasty and surprisingly juicy but the texture as I mentioned was what was tough. I thought about getting them processed younger, but they were so small I decided to let 'em get a bit bigger.

    I guess the next one will go to the crock pot and we will shred it up for enchiladas, burritos, pot pie or something.

    So I guess when we do get some meaties I will use those for whole roasting and fried chicken. I dont like to be wasteful, and I am not so spoiled that I wouldnt use what I have available even though I don't necessarily NEED to (We are not starving to death here LOL)

    I just got the aussies in a straight run b/c I was tired of my mean nasty roo and I wanted - no NEEDED - more hens (I had 2) so I intended to keep one and i figured we'd eat the extra roosters in the mix. Even the mean old roo (16 months old) is in my freezer. We dont waste lives or meat around here. I already knew he was gonna be tough. He had a date w/the crock pot for bbq chicken sandwiches, and then the soup pot after that. He weighed just under 11 lbs prior to processing. He looks like a small turkey in the freezer bag. We should get at least 2 meals out of him.
     

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