Freezer camp for the young Roosters

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by AmericanMom, Jan 22, 2014.

  1. AmericanMom

    AmericanMom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We planning on butchering all the young roosters and two of our older non laying hens Saturday, We have never processed (correctly) chickens...We culled a mean rooster we had several years ago but didn't do it the way I have since heard we should have. I want to do this right because we are going to be doing this every four months or so.
    We have taken the time to watch the video's on youtube and Ive tried to read as much as I can....My concern, when we bucher our rabbits, we let them rest in an extra refrigerator we have for three or four days before freezing... I have heard its best to brine chickens...Our Roosters are 4 months old, do I need to worry about toughness? I know the older hens are only going to be good for stewing..
     
  2. Ruthster55

    Ruthster55 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Just cut them in pieces (as for soup) and put them in your regular fridge overnight (ONE night) n a pot with some buttermilk and a little meat tenderizer.

    You hardly need to rest the meat four days. One overnight is enough.

    Then, slow-cook as soup or stew with your choice of vegetables, potatoes etc.
     
  3. Elke Beck

    Elke Beck Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I always raise my dual purpose roos to at least 16 weeks, and then rest the carcass in my spare frig for at least three days. I don't brine because I don't care for the texture of the meat, and I think it washes out the flavor. Also, i do different recipes with the chicken, and brining does not work with some of the recipes I make.

    I let the birds rest until I can wiggle the leg without the body moving along with it. Each bird relaxes at its own pace, so I test them each day, and throw the birds into the freezer as they become ready.
     
  4. AmericanMom

    AmericanMom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Ok, that's what I was wondering, I knew the older birds were only good for the boiling pot, but was hoping the youngsters (they will be 15 weeks Saturday) would be good enough to freeze whole after resting and cook like I would a store bought chicken...Thanks!

    Sounds a lot like the rabbit we always do...I wait two days then check daily for being able to freely move the legs, we had some 7.5 pounders (dressed out) last time and I let them rest for 5 days...Holy Cow are they tender!
     
  5. AmericanMom

    AmericanMom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I don't want to slow cook (soups and stews) all of them, but ok for the older hens. I'll do one of the birds the way you describe to see how it does [​IMG]
     
  6. Elke Beck

    Elke Beck Chillin' With My Peeps

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    There are recipes for old birds, including the classic coq au vin. Braising works wonders to make a tough bird tender, so you might want to try that instead of just boiling the older birds. Chicken and dumplings used to be a way to use a tough old hen.

    If your roos are dual purpose then they are not going to be like what you get in the store. You can still bake or BBQ them, but go lower and slower. I used to bake store bought chickens at 350 for about 1-1/2 hours, but my home grown birds go in at 300 to 325 for 1-1/2 to 2-1/2 hours. I treat them like I would game birds, so either rocket hot and fast or low and slow. A lot of recipes for pheasant will work very well with home grown chickens.

    On your rabbits, 7-1/2 pounds! [​IMG] Those are big bunnies! What kind of rabbits are they? Color me impressed.
     
  7. AmericanMom

    AmericanMom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I should have been more clear, only a couple of the bigger males have dressed out that big, its not on every rabbit...[​IMG]

    Our Breeding male is a New Zealand Black, he weighs in a hair under 12 pounds, Our Female Breeder is also a New Zealand, but she looks like a huge buff colored jackrabbit lol, she weighs in at alittle over 11 pounds... Dressed out, the female offspring are about 5-6 pounds and the males average a pound or so more..
    My Brother has been interested in the rabbits so I sent him home with one of the larger processed bucks, he has a family of 6 and they were at first worried one wouldn't be enough, he told me there was plenty with some leftover to make a sandwich or two the next day [​IMG]
     
  8. Elke Beck

    Elke Beck Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Still impressive. The people down the street raise rabbits, and I think theirs are about 3 - 4 pounds, dressed.
     
  9. AmericanMom

    AmericanMom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Got the 9 chickens done, one of the older hens we didn't keep, when we opened her up a thick yellow fat like substance filled her body cavity, we threw her out, none of the other chickens had that... It went pretty smoothly, Hubby made a couple homemade killing cones out of buckets.. Two of our rooster were of a silkie mix, there skin and meat is a greyish black, anyone tasted those before?? Not the most appetizing to look at but will try it anyways.

    All in all, from start to finish took us 3 hours, Not bad for a bunch of first timers :)
     
  10. enola

    enola Overrun With Chickens

    There was probably nothing wrong with your older hen. Internal fat in chickens is a bright yellow. The older the hen is the more yellow fst dhe will tend to have.
     

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