When to butcher & how/why to "rest" a butchered bird?

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by JenMT, Jun 25, 2010.

  1. JenMT

    JenMT Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jan 21, 2009
    Kalispell, Montana
    I'm making my first attempt at butchering some of my meat birds this evening! [​IMG] I have 12 Red Cornish (the slow growers) that are 12 weeks old today. I'm reading here that I should allow them to "rest" a day or more in the fridge before eating or freezing. What is the reasoning behind the "rest"? I don't have room for a dozen chickens in my refrigerator. Also, is it possible to let them get too big if I wait and only do 2-4 at a time every week or so? Thank you!
     
  2. dsnewark

    dsnewark Out Of The Brooder

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    Jul 4, 2009
    Every year we raise 25-50 cornish rocks. We have them butchered in the morning, bring them home and put them straight into the freezer. Never had a problem. I assume the reason it is recommended is for aging.

    They will continue to grow, but the only issue I would see is that you will have roasters instead of fryers.

    Dave
     
  3. Dogfish

    Dogfish Rube Goldberg incarnate

    Mar 17, 2010
    Western Washington
    Letting them rest a day allows rigor to leave the muscle tissues. Put them in a large cooler, on top of the ice, and let the ice drain out overnight. A 100-120 quart cooler works well for the amount of birds you have. Your solution of butchering a few birds at a time also works well.
     

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