Question regarding slaughter (graphic)

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by DrChickenKev, Oct 13, 2013.

  1. DrChickenKev

    DrChickenKev Chillin' With My Peeps

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    First, apologies to anyone offended, this seemed like the right section to ask a detailed question

    We have 4 cockerels at 6 months old and are about to slaughter for meat, and I was thinking the broom stick method as its quick and the least messy method I've found

    However, I found one of our hens looked quite poorly and in a bit of trouble last week and decided it best to do the right thing and end any pain she was currently in usign the broomstick method.

    So what happened, I comforted and laid her on the concrete path, placed a broom stick across the top of her neck just under her head, grabbed her feet and pulled sharply - I am sure I felt her neck snap as I pulled but she kept moving and her eye was still open, and not being super experienced I thought she was still alive, so I panicked a little and pulled again and the top of her neck popped out.

    So I'm wanting to know did I do anything that could be done better next time (as cockerels have stiffer necks?), or had I properly carried out the method first time. I was under the impression that nsapping the neck would result in no reflex movement and the eye would close - is that wrong?

    Thanks for any help, apologies if it upsets anyone reading
     
  2. LBejaran

    LBejaran Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I think most methods of dispatching your birds will result in some reflexive jerking, so I'm fairly sure your hen was dead. Many people find that using a cone to hold their birds keeps them from moving too much after their neck is snapped/cut. The cone also allows for your chickens to bleed out if you cut the neck, so you'll have to do a little less rinsing after you finish cleaning out your birds.

    From the sound of it, you did everything correctly. Reflexive movements after a chicken is dispatched is perfectly normal (though it isn't fun to watch or feel if you are holding the bird). If it makes me squeamish to feel the bird moving, I'd recommend looking into the cone method so you don't have to hold the bird throughout their final movements. The cone will also prevent bruises to the meat. If used correctly, it is a very humane method of dispatching your cockerels.
     
  3. DrChickenKev

    DrChickenKev Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks for this, I wasn't feeling squeamish with the bird moving, I jsut wanted to know it wasn't suffering, to be honest - this time it because she was clearly not in a good way and I was doing the 'right thing'

    However, its good to know when I try to take on the cockerels, probably tomorrow morning - 2 at 6 months old and one at 2 yrs old, someone told me you could boil an old hen in milk?
     
  4. LBejaran

    LBejaran Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Well, any chicken that is older should be used as a stewing bird. Cooking slow with lots of moisture is the trick to getting tender meat. I've never heard of anyone boiling an old hen in milk, though. That's not to say it's a bad idea, I just don't understand what difference milk would make. Just stewing slowly with lots of water works just as well. Old hens and roosters make great stocks, soups, and broths. Heck, you could make a great chicken pot pie filling with old hen. I bet that would be delicious!
     
  5. BCMaraniac

    BCMaraniac Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I've never heard about boiling an old hen in milk, but I have heard about restaurants soaking their chicken in buttermilk overnight to make is tender....but I've never tried it.
     
  6. DrChickenKev

    DrChickenKev Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Interesting... might look into the buttermilk, thanks

    Do you think an older bird needs to hang for any length of time? I was intending with the younger ones to process, put in cold water and then fridge for roasting a day later, or freezing? But with the older bird I wodnered whether it needed some 'rest' time first?
     
  7. Buster52

    Buster52 Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We rest all of our birds 48 hours in the fridge after chilling, before either cooking or freezing.

    And you can just stew it in water. No need for fancy preps unless it is for an interesting taste or something. We don't even brine them. Just cook it low and slow. My wife uses the crock pot for stew birds most of the time.
     
  8. DrChickenKev

    DrChickenKev Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Quote:Thanks for that, helpful! I'll see if I can cook them up tomorrow now
     

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