Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Eating Roosters

Last night, I cooked some of our chicken for dinner.  I put legs (thighs and lower legs still attached together) on a baking sheet and sprinkled them with salt and pepper for the kids.  For Nathaniel and me, I took the bone-in breasts and cut slits in them to stuff with cream cheese, then topped with bacon.  Mmmmm.  It's probably my favorite way to bake chicken.  Anyway, I cooked- and probably overcooked- it all to make sure it was done.  Then I made a pasta salad with the kalamata olive tapenade Nathaniel made this weekend, and I made homemade apple sauce from the apples Lydia and Malachi picked.  So it was a rather special dinner. 
And then we all sat down to pray and eat.  The kids love chicken, and they were really digging in when Malachi asked, "Are these our roosters?"
I wasn't sure what to respond, so I said, "What do you think?"
"No, they're too big.  Our roosters were littler than this."
Then Nathaniel answered (while I cringed), "Actually, these are our roosters."
I didn't have to wonder for long if that would ruin their dinner.  Elijah said, "I knew they were our roosters all the time."  Lydia ate and ate.  Malachi had 3 legs.  All three kids decided that our roosters tasted great.
Nathaniel was so amazed at how juicy the chicken was, he suggested that next year maybe we should consider raising meat birds.  Believe it or not, I didn't think he was crazy.

So I guess we handled eating meat we had raised pretty well, even me.  I prefer not to think about (or talk about) chickens while eating it, but it was really good.  That's a good thing, because we have more in the freezer, and there are 2 more roosters in our flock that will eventually need butchering.  Yes, the morning after the big rooster harvest, 2 of our chickens that we had hoped were hens came out crowing.  So now we have 11 pullets and 3 cockerels, and we're only keeping one rooster, so in a few weeks, Nathaniel will have to kill the other two.

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