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#62858 - 09/28/02 12:08 PM Butchered my egg-eating hen today
Anonymous
Unregistered


I don't really have a batch of birds to be butchered right now, but winter is coming up and I am eager to try out some of the fried chicken recipes that have been posted here. I caught an egg-eater during the mating season. I observed in the breeding pen one aggressive hen yank other females off the nest by their head feathers and peck the eggs until they broke. Then she, and others, ate the eggs. She's in the fridge now - her meat is 'relaxing' as per the suggestions of many.

I skinned her and cut the mean into the usual pieces. Tomorrow I will make some fried and some baked chicken. This is as much an experiment in the use of skinned chicken as it is in the use of hens that are more than a year old. I was surprised that she had a very full breast and lots of rich, yellow fat. Must be an effect of eating all those eggs!

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#62859 - 09/30/02 03:58 AM Re: Butchered my egg-eating hen today
Anonymous
Unregistered


Sandra and I baked the chicken pieces several ways. 1) batter fried for a few minutes then baked for 1/2 and hour, 2) baked for 90 minutes plain, 3) covered with bread crumbs and baked for 90 minutes. The baking was at 375 degrees. The meat was extremely tough - so tough I couldn't eat it except for the piece that was batter fried for a few minutes first. That one was actually pretty good. That piece was one of the breasts.

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#62860 - 09/30/02 04:34 AM Re: Butchered my egg-eating hen today
Susie Offline
Lord of the Fowl

Registered: 07/16/02
Posts: 1902
Loc: Arkansas
We need to come up with a recipe to slow cook an older bird. Something in the crockpot maybe, with wine added. Sure works for tough venison! I'm not a big fan of chicken soup and that is usually what I do with an old bird. I have one older hen that will be hitting the stew pot before winter. But then I won't be butchering any spent hens until next fall. I'll see if I can come up with a good crockpot idea for the one that will be butchered soon.

Susie

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#62861 - 09/30/02 07:05 AM Re: Butchered my egg-eating hen today
D. Caveny Offline
Ruler of the Roost

Registered: 07/16/02
Posts: 1102
Loc: Arizona
I was going to warn anybody about frying an old bird. Look up the chicken and dumpling recipies and see how they treated old birds "to soften them up".

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#62862 - 09/30/02 09:05 AM Re: Butchered my egg-eating hen today
Rob Offline
Ruler of the Roost

Registered: 07/16/02
Posts: 783
Loc: Pennsylvania
Pressure cooker, or soak in brine and put in dutch oven + cook lo and slo

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#62863 - 09/30/02 09:13 AM Re: Butchered my egg-eating hen today
Big Boy Offline
Ruler of the Roost

Registered: 07/17/02
Posts: 845
Loc: Kansas
We take old hens and roosters and cook them in a pressure cooker (not a canner), then pick out the meat and can it for use in dishes calling for chicken meat (or just set it on the table like a person would with a roast beef cut in pieces - only no horseradish but rather a honey-mustard sauce into which to dip the peices or drizzle over the top). The meat is treated like a person would with young fryers, but after the cold-soak, we fry the pieces for 10-15 minutes and put them in the pressure cooker (stacking the pieces until they are about 2/3 of the way up) and cook them in several cups of water to which we have added some chicken boullion, a rounded tsp of cracked pepper-corns, a bit of Kosher salt, 2-4 bayleaves, several whole parsley leaves, some lemon zest and just a smidgeon of sherry extract. We cook the pieces over a low flame for about 1 hour after placing the cap on the steam-outlet. The meat is stripped from the bones and then canned as per directions in the BALL blue canning book.

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#62864 - 09/30/02 10:50 AM Re: Butchered my egg-eating hen today
Anonymous
Unregistered


thank you all for posting. At least for me, the usual "crock pot / pressure cook" doesn't work. I crock potted my chicken for 24 hrs one day and it didn't help. The pressure cooker will finally turn the meat into a goo but I never did get acceptable chicken meat with it. My pressure cooker is a cheapie that only has one pressure (atmospheric pressue + 11 psi = 25 psi or 11 psi above external pressure). I wasn't impressed with any of those 'solutions' frown ! LOL!

I've heard people talk about 'stewing hens' but I've never found a recipe for stewing chicken. My kids don't like soup and don't consider chicken soup to be anything to eat. I might make that a different way - make the soup very thick and call it a kind of spaghetti.

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#62865 - 09/30/02 10:51 AM Re: Butchered my egg-eating hen today
Anonymous
Unregistered


...and I have 300 laying hens that I will need to start 'processing' very soon!

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#62866 - 09/30/02 11:58 AM Re: Butchered my egg-eating hen today
Big Boy Offline
Ruler of the Roost

Registered: 07/17/02
Posts: 845
Loc: Kansas
Man, we cook even three and four year old hens and they don't turn out like that confused . Are you sure that your Dakota "water" (I've drunk it so I know why it's in caps) isn't messing up your culinary endeavours or pre-conditioning them for cadaver rather than table-fare status :rolleyes: (or maybe your water is better than that brown-yellow soup with the film on top that poured out of a kitchen faucet into my tumbler last May when I was passing through :p )? You stated that the piece that was batter-fried and then baked had acceptable? quality. Was there any difference in cooking methods besides this? We do pan-fry and cook when preparing older birds (it works for beef and venison as well). Does this suggest that intial high heat might prepare the meat for baking or pressure-cooking? Did you use any kind of meat tenderizer preparatory to cooking the meat?

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#62867 - 09/30/02 12:09 PM Re: Butchered my egg-eating hen today
Big Boy Offline
Ruler of the Roost

Registered: 07/17/02
Posts: 845
Loc: Kansas
Hey, I have an idea. It sounds to me that you have the makings of some outstanding,lo-cholesterol, super-lean, tasty summer sausage (or ground beef extender)! Don't laugh, it could work. We use it to salvage older turkey and guinea carcasses: I've just never needed to use it for the chicken because it is always so good canned (you sure it's not the water? smile ).

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