How Tough?/Cooking Methods for 4-5 month old mixed breed roosters?

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by NeilV, Sep 7, 2014.

  1. NeilV

    NeilV Out Of The Brooder

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    I keep a flock of laying chickens. My wife brought home 5 chicks last May that were hatched out at my kids' school as a class project. They were probably hatched in early May. They were a mixed breed barnyard chicken -- red with black tails. Have no idea the breeds.

    Lucky us, 4 out of 5 were roosters. I slaughtered and plucked 3 of them today, and they weighed 2.5, 3, and 3.5 lbs. Certainly don't look like Cornish X grocery store chickens. Much longer legs and smaller breasts.

    Are these guys likely to be too tough to fry/bake?

    Should I pressure cook them?

    Stew them?

    Thanks
     
  2. mystonedgarden

    mystonedgarden Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 3, 2014
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    You can bake them, and I think even fry them at that young age. but dont quote me on the last part :p
    I always bake at a lower temp for a longer time.
     
  3. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    Try cutting them into serving pieces, rinse them off but do not shake the water off, and coat them with herbs. Think herb-crusted. I use basil, oregano, and sometimes thyme or parsley. Salt and pepper to taste if you want but I don’t. Put them in a covered baking pan that holds the moisture in well and cook them at 250 degrees for about 2-1/2 to 3 hours.

    You can also make chicken and dumplings or cook them in a crock pot for several hours but at that age you don’t need to go to that extreme unless you want to. The secret is to take your time, keep the temperature low, and don’t let them dry out.

    Do not fry or grill them. You would not like that.
     
  4. duluthralphie

    duluthralphie Chicken Wrangler Premium Member

    I think you can fix them anyway you want, as long as they " age" before you freeze them to relax the rigor mortus.

    As a kid we always had fried chicken from laying breeds. I loved it. The only difference I see is the size of the pieces
     
  5. aoxa

    aoxa Overrun With Chickens

    I will only eat 4-5 month old roosters by slow cooking them with lots of broth. I like tender chicken. I know it's from my upbringing on store bought poultry, but I cannot get used to the tough texture of birds over 14 weeks of age.
     
  6. Ridgerunner

    Ridgerunner Chicken Obsessed

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    Did you try cooking one? How was it?
     
  7. Rainier

    Rainier Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We sent nine cockerels between 13 weeks to 18 weeks to freezer camp (out of 20 chicks 12 were cockerels). Ours were cooked all day in a crock pot. I don't remember any of them being really tough. Next time we are going to try and marinate them first.
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2014
  8. aoxa

    aoxa Overrun With Chickens

    They weren't tough because you cooked them properly for their age :)
     
  9. Rainier

    Rainier Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I wish I could take credit for it but DH did! He's a hunter and cooks almost all of his bird game the same way. I'm a horrible cook! That's why I married him, so the children and I wouldn't starve [​IMG]

    ETA
    I don't know if it makes a difference or not but DH and the kids skin them instead of plucking.
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2014
  10. One Chick Two

    One Chick Two Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We used a crock pot on some year old P RIR roosters dressed out about 6-7 lbs. We felt they were pretty much perfectly cooked, considering their age. I tried baking, grilling, etc. Wasn't a fan.

    4-5 hours in a large crock pot on high, water to cover.
    Broth, 3 Tablespoons chicken broth- 1 T beef broth, a few T of red wine, garden chopped garlic/ onions/ celery/ carrots/ potatoes, added in early. Spinach/ greens, mushrooms/ squash/ 1 T barley added last half hour. I don't usually add additional salt, but if you prefer a bit more salty, try Liquid Aminos soy sauce alternative to salt. It's brown and can darken broth nicely, with good body (not thin/runny), and also imparts a very pleasant subtle flavor- not a soy sauce flavor.
     

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