Saturday, 23 December 2006

liveblogging cockerel preparation ...

Barnevelder CockerelRight.

I've done it.

Since the young cockerels have started to find their voices and crow in the mornings, I've been lying awake worrying about whether or not I could manage to actually kill one myself *.

And I can.

I got up this morning and caught the surplus Barnvelder as he was coming out of his house. And I brought him down outside the back door and did the broomhandle thing.

I think I did quite well - it took three goes, in the space of about a minute, to make sure that he was dead - to start with I didn't put all of weight on the broom, but once I did that and pulled his legs sharply, there was a definite 'crunch' and the flapping started.

Unfortunately, because I was panicking a bit by this point about not wanting to cause him trauma, I pulled a bit hard and there was some blood - click here for a photo of him on the washing line, dripping in to a bowl. I don't think it's that gruesome a photo, but B reckons that that's because I'm inured to it - so don't click if you think it might upset you.

PluckingB is plucking him in a bin-bag in the kitchen at the moment, as per our 'Ally kills them, B prepares them' agreement.

B was slightly taken aback when he wandered downstairs in nothing but a t-shirt and I presented him with a nearly headless chicken, but he's risen well to the occasion. He did comment that if I die before him he is going to put the words 'Ally - she didn't really think it through' on my gravestone. But he was smiling as he said it.

More pics later as we go along. We are hoping that if he's big enough, we can roast him tonight and then use the stock for gravy on Monday. He weighs in at six pounds dead weight - I think they are supposed to come it at about half the dead weight dressed.

Okay, we're done. I won't post the picture of B not quite taking the insides out correctly - he says he didn't loosen them quite enough before pulling and therefore Bad Things happened. And anyway, the smell wouldn't quite come across in a picture. He used the instructions from John Seymour, which has line-drawn illustrations and says that they were easy to follow.

The Done DeedHere's the finished product. He weighs in at three and three quarter pounds, just over half his original weight. It would have been better if we could have left him another few weeks and fattened him up a bit more; but not bad, for a first go.

Now, I am going out to collect our goose.


* And whether the neighbours would be round with a noise abatement order.

18 comments:

  1. Ally 1 Livestock 0

    Well done for taking him by surprise. You'd better watch it though, they'll be ready for you from now on. If one of them gets the broom off you then you could be in trouble!

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  2. Ally 1 Livestock 0

    Well done for taking him by surprise. You'd better watch it though, they'll be ready for you from now on. If one of them gets the broom off you then you could be in trouble!

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  3. didn't think you'd actually do it! B is right though. Plus get television, its not right to watch films on anything smaller than 26inchs... my motto the bigger the better...

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  4. didn't think you'd actually do it! B is right though. Plus get television, its not right to watch films on anything smaller than 26inchs... my motto the bigger the better...

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  5. Steg - I don't think they realised I'd taken him away to do the deed.
    Dream - I would be offended if I didn't know that you had Screen Envy - we watched Life On Mars on our 4 foot pull-down screen last night :). And size isn't everything you know.

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  6. Steg - I don't think they realised I'd taken him away to do the deed.
    Dream - I would be offended if I didn't know that you had Screen Envy - we watched Life On Mars on our 4 foot pull-down screen last night :). And size isn't everything you know.

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  7. Bravo to you! I knew you could do it! That is a fine-looking chicken, and I bet it'll be delicious.

    As you'll recall, the first time I did the broom handle thing, I pulled the rooster's head clean off (ugh! ugh! ugh!) and had to hose down the entire area (ugh!). But it is better to err on the side of firmness.

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  8. Bravo to you! I knew you could do it! That is a fine-looking chicken, and I bet it'll be delicious.

    As you'll recall, the first time I did the broom handle thing, I pulled the rooster's head clean off (ugh! ugh! ugh!) and had to hose down the entire area (ugh!). But it is better to err on the side of firmness.

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  9. why is it i think yuck? I mean I know that the chicken on my plate was killed.... Unlike me you at least have the guts to do the deed!!

    Hope he tastes good!!

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  10. why is it i think yuck? I mean I know that the chicken on my plate was killed.... Unlike me you at least have the guts to do the deed!!

    Hope he tastes good!!

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  11. Jamie - yeah, I had to so some hosing, too. And some scrubbing with the yard brush. And I am going to have to clean my outdoor shoes.
    Pete - it *is* and odd feeling. I have yet to eat him though. Or it. IT. It's now an 'it' not a 'him'. If I can't eat the meat, I'm going to have to go vegetarian :/.

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  12. Jamie - yeah, I had to so some hosing, too. And some scrubbing with the yard brush. And I am going to have to clean my outdoor shoes.
    Pete - it *is* and odd feeling. I have yet to eat him though. Or it. IT. It's now an 'it' not a 'him'. If I can't eat the meat, I'm going to have to go vegetarian :/.

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  13. That's very brave of you -- you wouldn't get me doing that I can tell you!

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  14. That's very brave of you -- you wouldn't get me doing that I can tell you!

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  15. Good for you Ally, I bet IT will taste absolutely delicious. As for the plucking, gutting etc i had a slight accident when drawing a pheasant. pheeew what a smell (pheasant not me!) didn't affect the taste though yummy.
    Merry christmas to you both

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  16. Good for you Ally, I bet IT will taste absolutely delicious. As for the plucking, gutting etc i had a slight accident when drawing a pheasant. pheeew what a smell (pheasant not me!) didn't affect the taste though yummy.
    Merry christmas to you both

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  17. Good for you! Well done :) Gosh, you're braver than me. I've not 'done the deed' with any of mine yet. Mind you, mine have yet to produce surplus offspring, so that is the excuse I'm sticking to just now ...

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  18. Good for you! Well done :) Gosh, you're braver than me. I've not 'done the deed' with any of mine yet. Mind you, mine have yet to produce surplus offspring, so that is the excuse I'm sticking to just now ...

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