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Project 46: Cleaning the bird

December 25, 2011

Another guest post by Nicole:

After the chickens are plucked, we chop off the head and feet.  We didn’t keep the feet this time, but you can.  You have to descale them and then freeze them until you have enough so you can make Pipius Claw, which is one my daughter’s favorite snacks.   Or you can make broth like some sort of pujwI’ if you can’t handle gnawing on feet.

Removing the feet

Then comes the part where you want to make sure you are doing this outdoors:  start taking out the innards.  First we remove the crop from the top of the bird.

Removing the crop

It’s kinda gross inside, so we try not to accidentally cut it open, though I don’t think it ruins the meat if it that happens.  Then we very, very carefully cut around the anal vent to free it from the fat and skin.

Cutting out the anal vent

Once you get through to the membranes, you carefully separate the intestines form the surrounding membranes.  When I get to this point, I prefer to use my hands lest I cut the intenstines… which *would* ruin the meat.  Eventually you work your way around the insides enough that they sort of fall out of the bottom cavity.  If they don’t come out easily, you have to go back in and remove more membranes.

Removing the organs
Once they are out, it’s easy enough to remove the gizzard, liver, and heart.  There’s a tiny little green sac attached to the liver you have to remove.  Don’t puncture that either.  A chicken liver is a horrible thing to waste.  We have not yet bothered cleaning out the gizzards.  I used to eat them all the time in North Carolina, but I am much less enthusiastic having come into contact with them in their natural state.

Removing the green thing from the liver

Wash the bird up and store it in your preferred manner and you’re almost done.  The cleanup is easy if you do this outside and keep a trash can for the discards.

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