Tuesday, December 23, 2014

The Hopeful Farmer: Eating Snowy

    Ding! Dong! The rooster is dead!  Snowy, the wicked rooster, who terrorized my children and plucked half of the hens naked, is now history.  Right around Thanksgiving we decided it was time.  We had the time and  a tutorial from  Youtube, so what more did we need?
    To start with, we needed to catch him.  Snowy was a pretty smart bird.  My husband almost caught him with a snare, twice,  but the darn thing escaped.  Trying to go into the  run and actually catch him outright would have meant much bloodshed on our part - and I will admit, I was scared of that rooster!  In the process of trying to  catch him, both Snowy and one of the hens escaped the run.  Now shooing the hen back into the  run was easy.  Snowy was free and he was going to stay that way.  He ducked under the car, and literally crawled to the other side. I never knew chickens could crawl!  My husband grabbed an old blanket out of the car and began chasing the  bird around the barnyard.  That is when it got funny.  The rooster  squeezed through the fence - Drew had to go over it.  He  flew, and ran as Drew chased.  Eventually, the blanket won, and the bird was strung up  in the shed.
     There are many ways to actually kill a chicken.  Drew slit its throat. We are not certain we did this correctly, because it took an awfully  long time for the  rooster to bleed out.   It was getting dark, so we took him home for the processing.
   It got more silly as we tried to  scald him for plucking, and the  bird did not fit in the pot.  We got a larger pot, more water, and a computer, and things got going.  With Drew  doing the actual work, and me reading the steps off the laptop, it was eventually done.   I would read a step, "Okay, you are supposed to scrape out the lungs"  and Drew would respond with, "What do the lungs look like?"  I would show him the photos and he would search for the proper looking things to remove.  It was a weird experience, probably best done in the daylight, not by patio lights in the cold of winter, but the deed was done.
     When he was  ready for cooking, that bird was a 5 1/2 pounder!  He became Coq au Vin, and he was delicious.
     Now, the hens are getting their feathers back.  We can open the coop or go into the run without arming ourselves with shovel or rake.  I do not care how pretty they are, the new rule is:  no more roosters!

Don't mess with dad, or he might put you in the soup pot!


  1. Adrienne, he was delicious. We were afraid he might be tough, but Drew had him brining for a day or two before cooking and he was delightful.