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Chicken Tips

Cutting Up a Whole Chicken

Cutting Up a Whole Chicken

Executive chef of Decatur’s No. 246, Drew Belline, recreates the end of Braveheart — with poultry.

Chef Drew likes to buy full birds to butcher at home. This is usually better value than buying a portioned out chicken, adn once you know how it doesn’t take much time to do. But if you are going to do this, use a sharp fillet knife to get the chicken from the ribcage, and be very very careful.

Starting at the top, cut down the center of the chicken and divide the breasts. There’s a big bone, called the keel bone, on the front of the ribcage. You can work your knife around that bone and, with some practice, remove the half of the chicken from the ribcage. Do the same to the other side, and from there it’s a very simple process of removing the limbs — separate the thigh and the drumstick, cut the breast in half, and remove the wing.