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Keeping chickens & eating them: Thoughts on our first experience processing

It’s a cold and gloomy day here, we are in the upper 50’s this afternoon and the vibe is very lazy.

Everly has been watching childrens movies on the couch today, specifically snow related holiday ones. She knows the seasons are changing and is excitedly dreaming of lots of snow this winter.

I’ve been spending some much needed time on my own blog’s todo list between caring for the girls and the home.

On days like today an effortless, home-cooked, nourishing meal is best. So, I’ve got one of our roosters in the soup pot in prep for Everly’s favorite dinner, chicken and dumplings.

Remember my blog post about Helga Crowing back in September? We always knew we needed to learn the art of chicken processing, for the sake of self sufficiency, homesteading and respect for the life cycle/ process but we weren’t all that excited about it. If we were keeping chickens and eating chicken we knew that it was logical to be able to process them when their time was up.

We’d heard lots of negative hype surrounding killing and processing your own meat so we weren’t sure if we’d be efficient and effective… Or if the process would sit well with us. The morning a rooster crowed we knew it was time to find out. Turns out we had two surprise roosters.

Luckily, Nathan was a champ and he singlehandedly remedied that situation, he did great.  Once the bloody part was over the girls and I came home, we went to the store so no gory blood scenes would be witnessed.

When it came to plucking we were pleasantly surprised and Everly was curious. Chicken feathers are her favorite so she was curiously watching all the feathers that would soon be hers. I think we’ll make a dreamcatcher with some eventually.

 Two roosters went in the freezer that night and today I am finally cooking one up. Thanks to Helga #1 we’ll enjoy a homemade, nourishing meal on this cold fall evening. Thanks Helga for your meat and for the learning experience.


<p>A city girl turned farmer. Yes women do farm ;) Owner and operator of direct to consumer, Ryder Family Farm in Southern Illinois.<br /> Wearing many hats I'm also a mother to 3, a wife, a yogi, a farmer, a 4-H & Girl Scout leader & hospitality manager.</p>

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