Posted under: poultry, how to, Homesteading
Having the proper equipment makes any job easier, and poultry processing is no exception. If you've processed your poultry with a homemade DIY scalding system, you'll appreciate the benefits of a purpose-designed Poultry Scalder. And if you're new to processing, it just makes sense to have what you need to make your first experience successful.
A scalder is one of the most important items for successful home poultry processing. You spent time and money raising your backyard birds. Why not ensure the results of that effort are perfectly plucked, attractive birds you'll be proud to serve to family and friends?
Scalding is done by dunking freshly harvested birds into hot water. Doing so opens the skin's pores and loosens the quills so that the feathers — including tiny pin feathers — can be pulled quickly and easily.
Experienced home processors know that the difference between a clean pluck and a difficult one lies in the scald. The feathers on a properly scalded bird readily release from the skin, making plucking fast, easy, and thorough. Plucking an improperly scalded bird, on the other hand, is frustrating, time-consuming, and often results in a bird with torn skin and loads of tiny pin feathers.
Water temperature must stay between 145° to 150° F. Any cooler than that and you won't achieve a proper scald. Any hotter and you risk damaging the skin and cooking the flesh. This precise temperature must be maintained during your entire processing session.
The Roots and Harvest Poultry Scalder is expertly designed for one purpose: to accurately heat and maintain the ideal water temperature for scalding. It eliminates the need to fiddle with burners, stoke fires, or haul hot and cold water — as well as the hassle of difficult plucks and poor results due to under- or over-scalded birds.
The scalder may also be used to shrink-wrap birds after plucking, and it includes detailed instructions for a variety of game and domestic birds.
The Challenges of Homemade Scalders
Although it's possible to cobble together a DIY system, it's often inconvenient and the results can be less than ideal. You'll need several components:
With a DIY scalder, you need to monitor the water temperature carefully and frequently to ensure every bird achieves a proper scald — not an easy feat! Each time you dunk a bird the water cools down, so you'll need a way to accurately adjust the water temperature during processing. If you're using a burner, you can repeatedly turn the heat up or down; however, it can be tricky and time-consuming to maintain the necessary temperature. You'll likely need to keep a supply of hot and cold water on hand to fine-tune the temperature. And you may experience interruptions and delays as you wait for the water to heat up or cool down.
Considering the hassle of a DIY scalder, it makes sense to consider an appliance designed specifically for this task!
For a helping hand with your backyard poultry and other homesteading activities, look no further than Roots & Harvest.