Considering raising broilers and have a couple of questions.

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by Dogfighter, Nov 17, 2008.

  1. Dogfighter

    Dogfighter Out Of The Brooder

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    So my Family is considering raising some broilers next spring and we have a couple of questions before we make up our minds.

    1) When you butcher the chickens can you get boneless, skinless chicken like we buy in the store? We love to eat chicken, but we really don't eat a lot of whole chickens. If anyone processes their meat birds to that point (I am assuming you have to remove the legs, thighs, and breasts?) do you loose a lot of meat rather that leaving it whole?

    2) We live in Seattle, WA and it rain here very often in the spring, its not that it is really that much accumulations, but that the ground can be wet for weeks at a time. The question is, can the broilers be in a tractor on the ground, moved daily, or will they get sick from always being wet? Is there a type of broiler that would be better in the rain (i.e. Freedom Ranger or Cornish Cross)?

    Thanks
     
  2. SandraMort

    SandraMort Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 7, 2008
    ny
    When you buy boneless white meat, it comes out to almost as much money as buying a whole bird. I bet that you could work out a trade with someone where you give them the birds, they bone the breasts for you and keep the dark meat as payment. I'd do it...
     
  3. patandchickens

    patandchickens Flock Mistress

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    Quote:Naturally you can bone out wahtever part(s) you want of the chicken -- it isn't any harder doing it on a whole homegrown bird than on a storeboughten bone-in chicken breast -- but you'd still eat the REST of the chicken, right? Because otherwise, man, what a waste.

    Maybe you might want to spend the winter buying some whole chickens from the store and experimenting to see what you like to do with them? That would give you an idea of whether you are likely to use a respectable amount of the bird. You can take off boneless breasts of course, and bone out thighs without much trouble (you can even bone drumsticks if you are ambitious and it's a big chicken), or you can cut things into wings and legs or leg quarters and cook them that way (fried, ovenfried, grilled, whatever). Then boil up the bones and the rest of the carcass (preferably after toasting in the oven first, for flavor) to make excellent soup stock.

    Or if you REALLY don't like anatomical chicken pieces, you can take the breasts off then simmer the whole rest of the chicken to make a) nice soup stock and b) a whole buncha cooked chicken that you then cool, take off the bones, and use for a million purposes like chicken salad, chicken sandwiches, enchiladas, fried rice, you name it.

    Be good to experiment with whole chickens before you start generating them yourselves though [​IMG]

    Have fun,

    Pat
     
  4. ChickenTender63

    ChickenTender63 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:My wife and I only eat dark meat so on ours, I sell either whole birds or I have the white meat left over from what we don't use that is cut into tenders, boneless breasts, split breasts, wings, and nuggets. I think many people have been surprised that they don't have to buy the whole thing and can get what they want already processed.

    I will have more experience with this in the spring though as to how it's going to go over. I am still fairly new to it, and will start having our first real big processings happening in the spring. Up until now, it's just been a few here or there.

    It works out nice for us though since we don't eat the white meat. I can sell off the most desireable parts at a higher price and keep the dark meat, livers, and hearts for ourselves. Keeps our tummies and our wallets a bit happier.
     
  5. glassparman

    glassparman Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Skinless is my preference as well but I do not scald and remove feathers.

    Once I cull the broiler hen, I put her in a freezer bag and stick her in the freezer for an hour or two . . . just long enough to chill the meat down some.

    Then, you can clean the chicken, eviscerate, and remove the skin. If you don't chill the chicken first, the skin will have a tendency to tear at the meat when you pull it off. Start around the neck and cut just through the skin, then you can start pulling and tearing the skin and it should come right off with the exception of around the end of the wings.

    As for boneless, I've never prepared it that way so I can’t offer any information.

    Michael
     
  6. Dogfighter

    Dogfighter Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 28, 2008
    Seattle, WA
    Thank you all for replying. Maybe I wasn't as clear as I should have been in the orignial post. We do want to eat all of the meat off the birds we woud not want to waste all that work. My wife just likes to cook with bonless chicken breast and I was wondering how easy it would be to remove that from the chicken and then how would I go about buthering the rest of the bird, would that create a lot of waste? It sounds like this may not be as common among backyard chickeners as the nice packages in the grocery stores would suggest.
     
  7. ChickenTender63

    ChickenTender63 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    would not be hard at all. Dress the bird as usual and then cut into fryer parts. Tjen continue from there and remove the skin from the breast and debone. You can then have skinless breasts for cooking and also a couple of chicken tenders from each one.

    There will not be any more waste than you would get from eating it any other way as long as you are good with the knife.
     
  8. silkiechicken

    silkiechicken Staff PhD Premium Member

    Sure, if you get a broiler type bird, and want to have boneless breast meat, just cut the breast meat off and use the rest of the bird somewhere else.

    Raise, butcher, pluck/skin, eviscerate as normal, and cut up to what ever portions you want.

    The key to getting store looking breast fillets is to practice. Take the whole bird and cut out the breasts. Then cut the wing pieces, the dark pieces and so on how ever you want to use them as. The breasts in the packages at the store started on the whole bird and are often more expensive just because someone had to go in and cut it off the bones and so on. I guess I don't quite understand why there would be waste, unless you just threw away the rest of the bird and only kept the breast? Are you looking for instructions on how to de bone a chicken and make different meat cuts?

    Like: http://www.gourmetsleuth.com/cutupchicken.htm
    And
    then you can use the breasts alone and the other cuts for other dishes?

    I raise broilers in tractors just up in Everett, they do fine. Just keep heat, food and water for them and a bit of moist ground during the day is not a problem. Of course, don't let them sit in mud puddles, but damp soil/grass doesn't really hurt if they have a warm shelter at night. The first few weeks are in a brooder anyways so they are toasty.

    Did that help any?
     
  9. Dogfighter

    Dogfighter Out Of The Brooder

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    Wow SilkeChicken that link was exactly what I was looking for, and with pictures too! I think that I will try someone’s suggestion and get a couple of whole birds and try cutting them into pieces and see how that goes. I will of course need to find someway to protect my laptop while I am cutting so I can have it right next to me for the first one. Thanks again to everyone for all their help.
     
  10. ChickenTender63

    ChickenTender63 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    can I suggest that you print the page out first, and then you don't have to protect the laptop. You can even then lay the pieces on top of the print out to make sure they match, that way you will know you are doing it correctly.

    You are starting to scare me with thoughts of you holding a knife also, lol
     

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