Tuesday, 9 June 2009

The Deed has Been Done

Well, we slaughtered the first two Dinner Chickens.

DH and OC (other chap) did the deed on Monday morning. Not perfect timing really, it's better to do it in the evening while the birds are all dopey. But they managed to do it without stressing the birds, and the birds had not had the trauma of having food withdrawal (they went to bed after eating on Sunday, as normal).

They used a friend's plucking machine, which I wasn't very happy about. The plucking machine is really quick, but it doesn't pluck as thoroughly as by hand. That wasn't my real objection though. Given that they only culled two birds, it seemed a bit.... disrespectful... not to pluck by hand. Still, I wasn't going to be the one doing the plucking, so I shouldn't complain.

The question then arose about how quickly to dress the bird. The correct thing to do is to leave the bird for 3 days. We did this last time (when we went on a course to learn how to cull humanely), and the smell was a bit strong for us. But I read that you shouldn't gut straightaway, because the meat can be a bit tough if you do. So we decided to leave it 24 hours, and DH has just done it. He managed to do it very quickly and efficiently. OC gutted straightaway, so it will be interesting to compare results.

We're going to try roasting the bird, as that seems the best way of evaluating the flavour. I hope it's OK.

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