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help! my birds are too big, too old and tough!

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by greyartist, May 23, 2010.

  1. greyartist

    greyartist Songster

    Jan 22, 2010
    We're newbies to meat birds. I have been trying to get my plucker built but weather, work, and other problems have really slowed me down. It seems every time I have a spare moment to work on it the rain starts. I have no garage or shop.

    We have run out of time I fear. The crosses are huge!!! I think they are 9weeks, I forgot to write down when I got them. They look like sumo wrestlers Even though we didn't get any farther on the plucker we decided to try skinning one today. Did so standing in the rain.[​IMG] It went ok but DH , being so proud of the task, grilled the breast out on the grill. But it was tough. Is this because they are this old? is it because they got too big? Now that the weekend is over it will be another week before we can do anymore. Will they all be crockpot birds now?
  2. FarmGirl01

    FarmGirl01 Songster

    Feb 5, 2008
    We always let the meat rest in the fridge for a few days. Not in water, but on racks so it can stay dry. Then if gets packaged and frozen or eaten. With my last batch of birds, I just killed one when we wanted to eat chicken for dinner. They were eaten at different ages. Don't worry just let the meat rest before eating it. Others should reply soon.[​IMG]
  3. Dogfish

    Dogfish Rube Goldberg incarnate

    Mar 17, 2010
    Western Washington
    Let the bird rest 12-24 hours minimum, and they will be much better.
  4. Funky Feathers

    Funky Feathers former Fattie

    Jan 15, 2009
    My Coop
    2 words: Slow Cooker. As in all day long on low. Tough meat gets tender that way. You have to do the same with turtles. [​IMG]
  5. KatyTheChickenLady

    KatyTheChickenLady Bird of A Different Feather

    Dec 20, 2008
    Boise, Idaho
    a slow cooker is not necessary for a 9 week bird, the problem was just that you cooked it while rigor was still set in. Resting is essential for tender meat, just try again! [​IMG]
  6. CARS

    CARS Songster

    Resting to allow the rigor to pass is the key.

    I keep mine on ice for the first day and then bag and refrigerate for another day or two. Then freeze. Or cook it up!!!

    My beef hangs in the meat locker for 14 days before they cut it. You just have to allow the muscles to rest for a while.
  7. dancingbear

    dancingbear Songster

    Aug 2, 2008
    South Central KY
    Don't worry, 9 weeks isn't old. Most people butcher broilers between 6 and 8 weeks, many let them go until 10 weeks for roasters. They won't be quite as tender as a 6 week old bird, but if you let them age in the fridge at least 48 hours before freezing or cooking, they should be fine.
  8. jenjscott

    jenjscott Mosquito Beach Poultry

    May 24, 2008
    Southeast Arkansas
    If you put a big pot of water on to heat to steaming, dip the bird in and slosh it around for about 30 seconds, the feathers come right off.
  9. greyartist

    greyartist Songster

    Jan 22, 2010
    thanks for the replys. Now I can tell hubby it was his fault! [​IMG] He is too impatient. [​IMG]
  10. cassie

    cassie Crowing 9 Years

    Mar 19, 2009
    We process ours at ten to twelve weeks or so. They are big but they are not tough!! I let them rest in the fridge for a couple days before freezing or roasting them though.

    If you get a good scald on them the feathers come right off. A little liquid dish soap in the water helps.

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