Last weekend we were at Costco shopping, and my husband had a mini freak out about the price of organic chicken breasts. For context – a package of four organic breasts cost approximately $24, while a package of two whole organic chickens cost $26. So, I decided then and there, because I love my husband and don’t want him to resent the organic chicken rule, that I would learn how to butcher a chicken.
I love learning things from YouTube. I have learned how to butterfly a chicken, cut my son’s hair, fix our dishwasher and make a rice bag and balloon solar system. I go to YouTube so often that my five year old son asked me if I could just go to YouTube to learn how to do heart surgery (long story…friend of the family… “Honey,I’m not that kind of doctor”)
I made the mistake of putting “Butcher a chicken” into the YouTube search bar. The first video had a very happy looking lady holding a live chicken and it took me a minute to realize that she was going to KILL the chicken on YouTube (I’m not sure if the viewer watched it happen since I hysterically hit the close button). But then I watched this video: Save with Jamie (sigh, I love Jamie Oliver) and this video: Butcher a Whole Chicken and this video: How to Butcher a Chicken – The Easiest Way. I took a little something different from each one and 20 YouTube minutes later I tackled my first chicken tear down. It didn’t go as smoothly as is did for any of my video mentors, but I did a pretty good job for my first try.
So, for about the same price as the package of four breasts I now have: four breasts, four thighs, four drumsticks, four wings and two carcasses for broth in the freezer. And, in case you are worried that you are too squeamish to take this on yourself, I was a vegetarian for 20 years – well into my thirties. I’ve been handling meat for less than a decade. Trust me, if I can wrap my head and hands around this, you can too.
And, it turns out that saving money while butchering my own meat made my husband a little frisky…