Just processed out first roo's... Now what?!

ChobeeChickenMommy

Songster
8 Years
Sep 2, 2011
620
16
151
Okeechobee, FL
Ok so my hubby & I just finished plucking, gutting, & cleaning our EE roo's. But now we aren't too sure what we want to do with them. He is saying maybe we can "quarter" them & cut off the wings & legs, but I don't know how to do that or the best way. Any suggestions?? Also what is the best way to store them in the freezer? Thank you all!
 

NovaAman

Crowing
10 Years
Aug 6, 2011
11,159
207
356
In Happy Chickenland, Holland MI
My Coop
My Coop
When you do cut them up, if thats your choice, leave them in the fridge for a few days before freezing. There is an enzyme in the meat that needs to break down first... I just put mine in the freezer whole instead of cut up. Of course they weren't technically meaties, and were not as heavy as meaties, so, wasn't really worth it to cut them all up for me. Also, i just froze mine in freezer bags.
 

booker81

Redneck Tech Girl
9 Years
Apr 18, 2010
1,929
105
183
Mid-MI
Easiest - put 'em in a gallon or so zip top bag each (if they fit, otherwise a plastic covered bowl) and put them in the fridge. Ignore them for a couple days - up to a week
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Then, either vacuum seal, and if you don't have sealer, then just double bag in zip bags, or wrap repeatedly in saran wrap, and put in the freezer.

For cooking, if they are older than 20 weeks, you'll probably be best to simmer them with veggies to make an awesome broth and pull the meat off for soup, or use in any other shredded chicken dish. Under that, you'll be ok to cook at low temps (about 300 or less), to make sure they come out more tender.
 

Cowgirl71

Songster
9 Years
Feb 5, 2010
3,176
81
221
Missouri Ozarks
Assuming your roosters were 5+ months old (in which case chicken soup is about the only thing they're good for, IMHO)...

I like to put the whole bird in a gallon freezer bag (minus the neck, we've learned that the neck vertebrae often puts holes in the bags).

My favorite way to eat "rooster" is to put the whole bird in a large pot of water and simmer it on the stove for a few hours until the meat is fully cooked and comes off the bone easily. Then remove the bird from the pot, debone it, strain the broth, put the meat back in, and add salt, chopped carrots, and sliced leeks, and allow it to simmer on the stove for a while longer until carrots and leeks are soft. About 10-15 minutes before serving add the noodles. YUMMY!!!
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Homegrown dual-purpose breed roosters make THE BEST chicken soup!!!
 

ChobeeChickenMommy

Songster
8 Years
Sep 2, 2011
620
16
151
Okeechobee, FL
Thank you all!! My hubby quarter the 2 biggest ones & left the smallest whole to use it for my grandmother's "chicken & yellow rice" recipe
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, and he wants to try & grill the others... We still have another roo to process & Cowgirl71 I think I am going to try your recipe! Thank you all again! I am upset that I had to cull these guys, but all 4 of our original chickens we bought were roo's & I will be getting some pullets in the spring plus I just hatched out a few dominiques at the beginning of December & I have 2 girls & 1 boys out of that bunch... Fingers crossed these guys taste decent since I used only organic feed!
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farmer_lew

Hi-Tech Redneck
9 Years
Jun 29, 2010
261
0
109
In the hills
Nothing tastes better than "homegrown" chicken. You know what it was fed and how it was treated. When I processed our first two, they were left in the fridge for about 72 hours then cut up. We fileted the breast meat off, cut the legs and thighs off in one piece, then cut off the wings. The rest of the carcass and neck were frozen together to be used to make stock, and the rest was frozen in ziploc bags. The DW made a phenominal soup the other day out of one of them. As for recipes, that is her domain.
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KBlue

Songster
8 Years
Apr 21, 2011
413
12
123
Katy, TX
You could also put on your nearest fancy chef's hat and make a batch of coq au vin. That dish was made for roosters, after all.
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LilyD

Crowing
10 Years
Jan 24, 2011
3,286
4,273
452
Bristol, VT
My Coop
My Coop
I would still roast mine at 5 months as long as they had rested for 2 or 3 days in the fridge first. Roasters are birds from 3 months to a year. As long as you cook it low and slow there is no reason that the birds can't be roasted. Another suggestion I have heard is to actually roast the bird upside down so that the breast cooks slower than the dark meat that way they get done around the same time and the breast stays moist.
 

MANNA-PRO

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