How to strip a chicken carcass

It’s a satisfying job – and it’s simple when you know how. Here’s the technique.

How to strip a chicken carcass
  • Once you’ve carved the chicken, wait for the carcass to cool enough to handle comfortably. Start by pulling it apart with your hands if you haven’t jointed it to carve it: wings, body, legs and thighs should all be separate.
  • Pull all the white meat off the body, keeping the pieces as large as you can. Don’t forget to pull around the wishbone and wing joints, too – there’s a lot of good meat lurking there. Use a small knife to get at hard to reach places.
  • Once you’ve done the top of the chicken, flip the body over and pull or cut out the underside bits of meat (they’re darker than the breast). Don’t forget the oysters – they’re the oval-shaped nuggets of meat nestling at the top of the leg joint and the most succulent, flavoursome bits on the bird (the cook’s perk).
  • With the legs and wings, if it looks edible, it is. Pull any leftover pieces of meat off the bones, discarding the stringy tendons.
  • Put all the meat in a freezer bag, weigh it, seal it, write the weight on the bag, then freeze for up to a month to use in pies, soups, casseroles or stir-fries.

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