19 April 2013

Sunday dinner

*WARNING* This subject may be graphic to some.

This afternoon, hubby and I processed the first Cornish/Rock broiler (aka one of the "Nuggets").  It was the first time for both of us, as neither of us were raised to hunt although we have both cleaned fish.  This was much more hands-on than cleaning fish.

I originally planned for the first broiler to be slaughtered two weeks from now, for hubby's birthday dinner in early May, but I had specific reasons for moving the date up and for selecting this particular Nugget.  The past week has been warm and humid, and he was not tolerating the heat as well as the other four even with soaked/fermented food and plenty of water available.  He started panting before the others, and was the last to stop panting in the evening, and yesterday I made the decision to take him earlier than planned rather than lose him to heat stress.  He was also noticeably the smallest of the five, and was not feathering like they have.

Even being the smallest of the Nuggets, he still dressed out to a decent sized bird, a little larger than the cornish rock "game" hens in the grocery.  For hubby and myself, this will probably work out to four meals total given the usual amount of sides I fix.

I now know what things I need to work on: the big one is separating the bile duct from the liver without bursting it.  That was a mighty fine looking liver I had to discard.  Another big point - the knives will need to be sharpened more, as this Nugget had firm skin and flesh and organs.  The other four Nuggets are healthier, more lively, and have better skin and feathers.

Hubby did take pictures, but the rain that is bringing us cooler temperatures tomorrow is also making uploading slower than molasses in an arctic January.  A garden update is also (past) due.

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