Category Archives: Chickens

CornishX Update

Doing a video update today 🙂

 

Enjoy!!

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Chick Update!

The chicks are 1 month old today! They are enormous compared to the “mystery chick” who we believe is a Black Australorp (but we’re not 100%). They are rapidly outgrowing their pen. Next weekend we are moving them out to the barn where they will have tons more space and a yard where they can scratch the grass and lay in the sun 🙂

The Australorp is dwarfed by the CornishRocks - these birds are all the same age.

I did a fair amount of research before deciding to raise CornishRocks. A lot of things I read said their chicks were very lethargic and just laid around all the time and hardly ever moved. Now things may change when they’re bigger, but for now, ours are pretty active. When I lift the lid on the pen to get out their waterers and feeders a couple will fly up and perch on the edge and watch me. They run around and even play fight with each other. If you put a grasshopper in there, then you really see them run! I’m hoping since ours have space to run and play and flap their wings and even fly if they want that we might avoid the leg problems and health problems I’ve heard about. But only time will tell.

An observer who was watching me refill the feeders

Another curious bird

Unbelievable how quickly they grow!

 

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Chicken Noodle Soup

We love roast chicken here. Add mashed potatoes, collard greens and biscuits and it’s a dinner we look forward to all week! Once the chicken is all eaten up, the remains become an even better dinner, Soup!

Take your chicken carcass and put it in a large pot. Take 3 or 4 carrots and a couple of stalks of celery and break them into large chunks and put them in the pot, you don’t have to peel them or cut the ends off…they’re flavoring your broth, just make sure they’re clean. Cut an onion in half and toss that in there. Add a bay leaf or two, a few whole garlic cloves (smashed) a few whole peppercorns, a bit of salt and then enough water to cover the chicken by an inch or two. Bring this to a boil, reduce the heat, cover the pot and just let it simmer all day or at least 3 or 4 hours. When I make soup it takes all day. I start the pot early in the day and near dinner time the pot has reduced and the broth is a lovely golden color.

When you’re done simmering and your ready to start your soup, turn off the heat and let the pot cool down for about an hour, it will still be plenty hot, you just don’t want to scald yourself. Get your biggest bowl or another pot and put a colander in it. Carefully pour your pot of broth and bones and vegetables into the colander. That lovely broth is the base for your soup! Pour your broth back into your pot and put it back on the stove and bring it up to a simmer. You can put all kinds of vegetables in your soup…I put carrots, potatoes and buttercup squash. You can put your favorite vegetables in yours, just make sure they’re all cut to about the same size for even cooking.

Pick through the stuff in the colander and get out all the meat you can and put it in a separate bowl. You’d be surprised just how much meat is left on there! I take all the vegetable chunks and give them to the chickens.

With your broth simmering and cooking your vegetables, now it’s time to make your noodles!

Beat together 2 eggs and about 2.5 cups flour along with about 1/2 cup broth. I use a stand mixer and just dump everything in there and let it mix it up for me. But by hand, you’d mix it up as best you could and then knead it until it was smooth. Aim for a fairly stiff, but moist dough. Not too sticky. You made need more or less flour depending on the humidity. But don’t add too much, you don’t want dry noodles. Take your dough and roll it out to about 1/8″ thick, sprinkle flour over it then slice it with a pizza cutter or knife into fairly thin (1/4″) strips and then cut the strips to about 2 or 3 inches long. I have a hand crank pasta machine that rolls my dough out flat and then cuts my noodles for me (great machine and not terribly expensive either! Get your own here)

Be careful with your noodles and treat them gently. Try to keep them as separate as possible. It’s easier if you flour before you cut. Make sure your pot is gently boiling, increase the temperature slightly, and drop your noodles in one at a time until they’re all in there. Let the pot come back up to a boil (if it stopped, raising the temperature usually allows uninterrupted boiling) reduce the heat back to about medium and let the noodles cook for about 5 minutes.

Add your chicken, heat through and you’re done! Awesome homemade chicken noodle soup 🙂

Enjoy!

My Chicken Noodle Soup

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New Arrivals

Got a call this morning at 5:30am from the Post Office letting me know our babies had arrived!! So I bundled up and raced down there and came home with this:

Chicks!

So I plugged in the heat lamp and filled their waterer and put some food in a pie plate and as each one came out of the box they got their beak dipped in water…they are very thirsty when they first arrive and I’ve found dipping their beak gets them a drink and teaches them where the water is.

So thirsty!

Pretty soon they were scurrying around and exploring the pen

Exploring their new home

The black on is our “Mystery Chick”. We always get our chicks from McMurray Hatchery and with every order of birds they send a free mystery chick. We always hope for a hen but usually they are roosters…

Our Mystery Chick

These birds are meat birds and will go from chick to freezer in 8-10 weeks.

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Chick Update

Got the broiler booster in the mail today! YaY!!!! Just 5 more days 😀

Broiler Booster from McMurray Hatchery

 

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Chicken!

We ordered 25 Cornish Rocks this morning and they’re set to arrive around October 5th.  I am very excited because these are our very first meat birds! We’ve harvested chickens in the past out of necessity (too many roosters, aggressive hens, etc) but these are our first birds truly for the sole purpose of eating. So look for pictures of the chicks in the next couple of weeks!

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