Choking chickens (was: testing mini-preps) : LUSENET : TimeBomb 2000 (Y2000) : One Thread

Success! 17-year old son, with my help, bled out two cockerels this morning before I took him to school (his request). They're now in the crockpot cooking for dinner. Thoughts on the process: (sorry about that; hit the wrong button.) First and foremost, I need MUCH better knives. Killing was less traumatic (for me) than I expected. Got a good bleed on both birds, but amount of blood was less than I expected. Scalding was no big deal. Plucking was both easier and harder than I expected- most of the feathers came out very easily, but the pinfeathers were a bitch. Equally difficult was the tail area- these were the low chickens on the totem pole, had had most of their tail feathers picked out, and consequently had LOTS of feather nubbins that were nearly impossible to grab hold of. Also got fewer feathers than I expected, but maybe they just look like less at the moment because they're wet. Evisceration was a bit tricky, but still not as yucky as I expected. Nicked the gallbladder on the first one, but managed not to contaminate anything but the liver. Second one I got free okay. Compared to store-bought meat birds (mine are Buff Orpingtons, a dual-purpose breed), they look really scrawny, with a LOT less breast meat (my white-meat-loving hubby will be sooooo disappointed....). Giblets are simmering on the stove for gravy. I'll think of you all as we chow down tonight.

-- ldeeds (, December 08, 1999


Hi ldeeds, congrats. Are you plucking by hand? I do all the big feathers first with a pair of thin-nosed pliers (thin so I can grab them well in towards the body without chewing the feather up too much). I find it quicker than tugging away on slippery feathers for ages.

All the best.

-- Servant (, December 08, 1999.


Sounds good. Just FYI, we skin our chickens. Eliminates the feather plucking ordeal. Enjoy your dinner!

-- Sharon (, December 08, 1999.


-- Veggie Guy (too@bad.sosad), December 08, 1999.

Sorta OT, but my daddy and I got to talking about this the other day. He said when they used to kill turkeys, they would put them in an old pillowcase and cut off one corner, then when Tom would stick his head out WHACK!!! That's it for him, keeps him from flapping too much...

-- sugarpie (, December 08, 1999.

While in eastern Europe I saw people butcher pigs & rabbits, which they raised in their backyards. There's very little blood when it's done properly, & lots of useful items (bones for soup, blood for sausages, pelts, organ meat for your pets, etc.) when you're done.

Too bad we're losing touch with all of that. Most of us in the suburbs have almost no skills at all, very few fruit trees or gardens, & no livestock. Instead we just drive down to Meglo-mart... It can't last.

-- feeling useless (in@the.burbs), December 08, 1999.

The feathersare easy to pluck if you put the bird into boiling water for a very short while before plucking, you don't want to cook the bird, just soften him up a little....

-- BH (, December 08, 1999.

"Choking the chicken"? I thought for sure that this thread would be way OT.

-- Lars (, December 08, 1999.

Lars, LOL. same thought here. or spanking the monkey

-- (badboy@work.xcom), December 08, 1999.

Lars, Your reply made me LOL. My hubby frequently complains that I don't "choke the chicken" often enough.....

-- ldeeds (, December 08, 1999.

Before the beginning of the school year my family and I relocated from Austin to a rural community in the country. I was concerned about the children going through a cultural shock transferring them from rather large city schools to the very small country schools they are now in. My oldest, almost 13 year old, son came home on one of his first days at the school complaining that it was "too" different here...that the boys at his school talked about "choking the chicken".

Trying to be optomistic, I suggested that this might be very usefull information for when we acquired our chickens...

My son just rolled his eyes at me...eventually to my embarrassment, I realized what he was referring to.

-- Texas Terri (, December 08, 1999.

Regarding the evisceration of chickens: We kill and pluck, but then refrigerate overnight. (We do about 8 at a time, and that's all the plucking I can do in a day.) The next morning, all the intestines, etc., have "jelled" and it is much cleaner and far less gooey to eviscerate. We also keep them in a cage w/o food or water for 24 hours. And we don't let them watch. They get really upset.

Now, I have to tell you a favorite story. Years and years ago, we had rabbits, and three little kids, under 10. We had white rabbits and one black one. The kids could make pets of any colored or spotted rabbit, give them names, etc., but knew the white ones were for food. We processed the white rabbits when the kids were away at school. This worked fine.

Until the day the dog had puppies. She had six brown ones, and one spotted one.....and the five year old announced: "Goody! we can keep the spotted one, and eat the others!

-- Mary (, December 08, 1999.

Young children always see more and understand more than their parents imagine.

-- Tom Carey (, December 08, 1999.

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