Butchering day was a great success! Everything went without a hitch, I didn’t have to help, they got done before the heat of the day and I was able to shoot a bit of video & images to show you our chicken butchering set-up.
These birds were the best looking and best tasting!!! ones we’ve done so far! I’m not exaggerating when I say that the subtle depth of flavor and perfect tender texture made this the best chicken I believe I’ve ever eaten! It was neither stringy or tough as our meat birds in the past have been nor mushy like a supermarket bird. I was somewhat concerned that, as an active bird, the meat would be very tough as a result of not living a sedentary life. I know that “they” say you’re chickens and hogs should have little to no exercise to prevent tough meat. How happy I am to see that is not the case!
It was grilled using Tammy’s new recipe, so I cannot entirely credit the bird having never sampled another bird grilled using that exact method, but our homegrown birds in years past required all day in a crockpot to be brought to an edible stage so I think that alone speaks volumes.
Our Chicken Butchering Set-Up
(I apologize for the vertical video. Oops. Can’t go back and reshoot it now, can I?)
To see our recommended chicken butchering supplies see this post HERE.
Freedom Ranger Cost Analysis
Cost of 50 Chicks: $106.00
Cost of 1,050 lbs. Feed: $313.81
Original Flock: 50 birds
Losses: 19 Birds (3 leg issues @ 3 weeks, 14 predator attacks, & 2 infections @ harvest)
Harvested Meat: 171 lbs. 8 oz.
Average Weight Per Bird: 5 lbs. 5 oz.
Average Price Per Bird: $13.54
Average Price Per Pound: $2..45/lb.
Cost of Local, Ranged Broiler: $3.25/lb.
With the 3 week old White Mountain Broiler chicks in the brooder ready to hit the pasture any day and almost half of their short life already expired, I’ll be back in about a month to tell you all about how they stack up to their Freedom Ranging cousins.
(Update: See that post here. And the results of our side-by-side taste test here.)