(WARNING – POST POTENTIALLY UNSUITABLE FOR VEGETARIANS, OR PEOPLE WHO DON’T LIKE TO THINK TOO DEEPLY ABOUT WHERE THEIR FOOD COMES FROM!!)
So we bought some day old Hubbard broiler chicks.
And ate, and grew….
Until finally twelve weeks later, they were ready for the table.
Now, let’s be honest here, this is far closer than most people will ever get to the source of their food, and part of the reason I did this was to see if I had it in me to raise an animal from one day old to fully grown, and then kill it for food. I won’t go into all the details, but suffice to say, we did the most difficult job as humanely as we could, as befits a bird grown with care, in free range conditions.
The final dressed weights ranged from 2.5 to 3 kg (5.5 to 6.5lb).
And yes, I have to say, they did taste delicious!
So, is it something we’ll do again? Yes, definitely. Mind you, next time will have to wait until I have more time on my hands, since the sheer effort of killing, plucking, and drawing 25 birds was quite considerable. Naturally raising table birds is not something that everybody can do, and nor is it something that most people would want to do (in fact, it didn’t even save us any money compared with buying from the supermarket!). However, I did feel a certain pride at eating an animal that we’d reared ourselves, knowing that it had lived the happiest life possible, albeit for only three months. What’s more, the freezer is now full of enough delicious chicken to keep us going until Christmas……. by which time of course, the turkeys will be ready! 🙂