How old is too old to process DP birds?

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by HHandbasket, Feb 8, 2012.

  1. HHandbasket

    HHandbasket The Chickeneer

    We have some naughty roosters we have decided to process and eat. How old is "too old" for a rooster to be edible? The oldest one in the group is about a year and a half old, the rest between 7 and 9 months.

    Now that we are getting more involved in processing and have a better handle on what to do, we are going to process our roosters much younger in the future. It's just that last year's hatches turned out to produce about 80% cockerels.

  2. halo

    halo Got The Blues

    Nov 22, 2007
    My Coop
    I dont think they are ever too old. The age will just determine how you will have to cook them.
  3. Domestic_goddess

    Domestic_goddess Songster

    Mar 26, 2009
    We have done them over a year old. They are larger, more meat on them, then a 6-9 month old.
  4. Chemguy

    Chemguy Songster

    May 30, 2011
    Springfield, Ohio

    Correct. This is the origin of Coq au Vin. Take an old rooster, cook the holy heck out it it in wine and herbs, add mushrooms+veg and Voila! The long cooking time is meant to take the old, tough meat and make it more tender.
  5. Beekissed

    Beekissed Free Ranging

    Do you have a meat grinder? Put just about any meat through a grinder and you won't have to cook it to death to eat it. Just use it as you would shredded chicken~soups, casseroles, stir fry, chicken salad, etc.
  6. Sundown_Farmer

    Sundown_Farmer Chirping

    Apr 2, 2010
    Non-Chicago, Illinois
    ...or a pressure cooker.
  7. Illia

    Illia Crazy for Colors

    Oct 19, 2009
    Forks, WA
    If you don't wait soup or the related sort, anywhere below 9 months is fine. 5-7 is perfect.

    If you want soup or the sort, any age is good. The older, the longer it will need to tenderize with slow cooking though, but, it's still chicken! [​IMG]

  8. HHandbasket

    HHandbasket The Chickeneer

    Thank you, everyone, for your responses!! Oh, I don't mind soup AT ALL! In fact, that's what I made with the first rooster we processed about a month ago & it was probably the single best pot of soup I've ever made in all my years of considering myself a "fabulous cook." I've not made coq au vin but have several recipes for it. It doesn't hurt that we live in wine country and, in fact, hubby works at one of the better wineries in the Shenandoah Valley of Amador County, so there is alllllllways wine in the house. In fact, right now there's a bottle of their new Syrah in the kitchen calling my name, and I think we're going to have it with dinner this evening.
  9. OldChurchEggery1

    OldChurchEggery1 Songster

    Sep 27, 2011
    I like the idea of a meat grinder. I'd never thought to run chicken through it, but I will have to try it this year!

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