Did in my old layers today

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by michickenwrangler, Sep 24, 2011.

  1. michickenwrangler

    michickenwrangler To Finish Is To Win

    4,511
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    Jun 8, 2008
    NE Michigan
    Long day.

    My neighbors were slaughtering out their old laying hens so I brought mine along too (should update sig line now ...). Every thing went really efficient with the 3 of us working and relatives from downstate came over shortly after I was done (and were appalled to see raw chicken that wasn't wrapped in cellophane with a Kroger sticker on it). So the most relaxing part of my day was actually plucking chickens.

    Boyfriend who is working in NJ temporarily and I talked on the phone and he asked if I could do it myself in the future. Yeah, with your help of course. He's wiring me money this week to buy another freezer.

    Some of the hens are in the freezer but one hen and the rooster went into the stock pot and got made into chicken soup. Broth turned out great (especially with organically grown veggies added in) and even the chicken meat turned out pretty good. Dogs were sitting around licking chops while broth was simmering, so of course they got to sample some with their kibble tonight.
     
  2. Ema

    Ema Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jun 4, 2010
    N. Ontario CANADA
    I am glad all went well. You sound like you had a very good productive day.

    I want to process my older birds too. just worried about the whole mess of plucking cause I have nothing to do it with but my hands and everyone around here keeps telling me how hard it is [​IMG] I am not deterred I will try it and if its something I find too tedious well I will skin them.

    I was on the market for a new freezer too, and out of the blue one of my friends told me they were getting rid of their freezer. they gave it to me for free and its huge I saved some serious cash there :)

    Ema
     
  3. michickenwrangler

    michickenwrangler To Finish Is To Win

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    Jun 8, 2008
    NE Michigan
    The neighbors let me use a pair of their gloves--the knit kind with the little nubbly rubber grippies all over it (if you know what I'm talking about) that worked pretty well except that my hands were all soggy and wrinkly at the end.

    The way we did things with the 3 of us:

    K-caught chicken
    Me-wrapped legs together with duct tape, put chicken in killing cone
    D- dispatched chicken, when flopping stopped he would pile them on the table, his in one and mine in the other

    Once all were dead,

    I scalded and plucked, D jointed them and K cut out the breasts.

    We didn't gut simply because they were all old hens and roosters and none of us wanted whole birds to fry or roast and none of us are into giblets. Because most of the birds got skinned (I didn't skin mine until I got home) I didn't get very picky about every last pinfeather. All of my legs and breasts got tossed in a big stainless steel bowl that I took home and filled with salt water and ice to let them sit for about 10 minutes to rinse off any last traces of blood or feathers that had been plucked but stuck to the meat. The rooster was really tough to skin (and he still had quite a few pinfeathers in him) so I ended up just throwing his legs in the stock pot for broth. The rest of the legs I left the skin on but the breasts I took the skin off.

    My spoiled chickens had plenty of bright yellow fat on them so the broth, again, was just delicious.

    Hope this helps.
     
  4. Tracydr

    Tracydr Chillin' With My Peeps

    How did you clean them without gutting? Or am I misreading?
     
  5. michickenwrangler

    michickenwrangler To Finish Is To Win

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    Jun 8, 2008
    NE Michigan
    We just cut off legs and breasts and I cleaned those in salt water.
     
  6. flowerchild59

    flowerchild59 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 25, 2010
    Southern IL
    Quote:Love your comment about the most relaxing part of my day was plucking the chickens. I have relatives like that so I concur!!!!!!!!!!!!
     

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