Laura and I learned how to cut up a chicken the other day at our knife skills class. We bought ourselves a Rocky Jr chicken to make Gordon Ramsay's "Sticky Lemon Chicken" (pictures coming soon).
Rinsing the chicken (and trying to get it to do the chicken dance)
Preparing to remove the wing. Cutting the chicken up would have been much easier if we had a really sharping boning knife, but we made do with Laura's short Chef's knife.
Wings off. Removing the first leg. Unfortunately tore the skin over the beast slightly.
Removing leg two.
The cuts look nicer if you pre-score the skin. It helps if the knife is really sharp though. This knife pulled at the skin a little more than I would have liked.
Finishing the cut my removing the leg from the body from the interior side.
Prepairing to remove the spine.
Cutting through the ribs to remove the spine.
Removing the spine from the breast - it's still attached at the neck and shoulders - a little pulling and cutting does the trick.
Splitting the breast in two.
6 pieces now - 2 breasts, 2 leg/thighs, 2 wings.
Follow the line of fat between the leg and the thigh and it cuts quite easily.
I prepared the leg in a wierd way that Gordon Ramsay demonstrated in his Sticky Lemon Chicken video. I cut around the bottom of the bone and scaped the skin and ligament down, then cut the bone at near the foot. Gordon says that it helps the leg cook faster - I don't really understand how, but I think it looked abit nicer for our dish.
We cut the breasts in half, so that the pieces would be roughly equal in size.
The final 8 pieces. I also de-boned the breasts. It wasn't necessary for our recipe, but there were only few remaining bones (because some of them broke off when I was removing the spine). Boning the chicken was pretty easy. I think this took about 20 mintues or so - but I'm sure I could do it much, much faster with a bit of practice.