I had a previous post about my mental journey on being able to process our first roosters. I would like to tell you all about what we did with them. After they were cleaned we put them in a pot with cold water and let them rest. We did this on a Sunday, and we didn’t check them until Wednesday morning, they were not ready yet. We opened the pot and their legs almost straight up in the air, and they were stiff as a board! I was like “OMG,” they are like road kill, we can’t eat them yet. We cleaned out the water and put fresh cold water in the pot and let them sit. This brought back some childhood memories of my dad having rabbits and squirrels resting in the fridge. I had to give him a call and tell him all about my Rooster Soup I was planning to make.
If you don’t plan to consume them immediately, then you will have to let them rest until the body has passed the rigor mortis phase. This can be different for each animal. The two roosters took exactly three days. On the third day, I could bend the legs without any problems. I was excited and texted Jason, “They are ready!” Since I had never eaten a rooster and most people said they are tough, stringy and chewy, I was not taking any chances. I was making soup with them. I made them the traditional chicken soup way with carrots, onions, and celery. I threw in a few bay leaves and a bundle of herbs from the garden. I cooked them until tender. I took the meat off the bone and separated the broth into two pots one for soup and one for stock. For the stock, I just put the bones back in, added new vegetables and let that cook down to a nice rich stock. That made 2 quarts of stock that I put in the freezer to use when the temperature starts to drop. The soup I put the liquid in a fine strainer and got out any undesirable pieces. Added new veggies, egg noodles once they were almost cooked the chopped up meat went back in the pot.
It actually couldn’t have come at a better time as I was coming down with a cold. The soup was very welcoming to my sore throat. Unfortunately, because I was not feeling well, I did not take any pictures of the finished product. I do have to mention the roosters were seven months old and they were not stringy or chewy at all. I think I could have easily roasted them. I am sure I will have another chance next year when I breed my Barnvelders.