Jaques Pepin has an excellent tutorial on deboning a chicken for Galantine here:
Unfortunately, I learn best by placing myself as the first-person object of my subject.
I say “unfortunately” because in this unfortunate recipe, I am learning to de bone a chicken by pretending to be the chicken.
In this series of unfortunate recipes….well…
1. Cut your arm off at the elbow.
1.a. Grab your arm at your fingers in one hand and in another (imaginary) hand grab your arm at your wrist.
1.b At 90 degrees to the natural rotation to your wrist, break the joint. Show now mercy or pity.
1.c. Pull your fingers very hard away from your wrist so that your fore-arm bones pop-out where they used to meet the wrist.
1.d. Discard your hand and save for stock.
1.e. Remove one of your fore-arm bones and save for stock.
1.f. Scootch the muscles of your your fore-arm along the remaining fore-arm bone towards where your elbow used to be, forming a wad of meat at the end.
1.g. The French call this “the lollipop” it is nice as an appetizer served on a lovely leaf of cabbage.
1.h. (aside, the same techique applied to your bicep/tricep region can serve as a “lollipop” too.
2. Remove your collar bone. (If you have read this far, I presume you have removed your head prior to starting. If not, decapitate yourself and reserve for stock–or possibly make head-cheese or schmaltz, depending on breeding and feed)
3. Run a sharp knife along your spinal cord to split the skin.
4. Cut through your shoulder joints where they meet what remains of your back. The purpose is only to remove the “articulation”
5. Grab your remaining arm (with the articulation/joint cut-through) and rip each side of your body down to your hip-bone-small of your back (your “oyster” )
6. Hold your self up by your neck and using your hands, pull the entire front of your flesh (no guts) away from your skeletal torso. The purpose is to remove the bones of your upper torso from the muscles that surrounded them.
7. At this point, only your legs are attached to your torso’s skeleton. Time to remove them….!
8. Saving the tasty oyster in the smalls of your back, break our leg/hip joints by laying yourself on your side, taking your knee and force it up to where your ear used to be. With the joint broken, use your knife to cut the cartillage.
8.a. Repeat for your other leg.
9. Using your fingers, remove the two fillets that run along your spine. These are good deep-fried with mustard sauce, or perhaps stuffed with spinach.
At this point, you have removed your entire body from your arms (minus their forearms) and legs.
I don’t know about you, but this is making me HUNGRY!
10. Save your torso bones for stock.
11. Remove the long sinew from your back-muscle fillets
12. For each leg, grab the thigh bone where it used to meet your spine, you will need to cut your sinews to get a good grip.
12.a Scrape and push towards your knee.
12.b When you have scraped the bone clean up to your knee, do NOT cut through the knee joint.
12.c Instead, cut the tendons around the joint-w/o cutting through the joint- and free up the calf muscles on the other side of your knee
12.d. Scrape all the way to your ankle.
12.e. Pull the muscles and skin you have scraped down back UP so what once was your entire legs resembles what you once looked like.
12.f Using the back of your knife, break your shin-bone at the ankle.
12.g Remove all your leg bones, leaving only your ankle and foot bones.
Your legs are now ready for the stuffing of your choice!
13. Stuffing your arms is optional…however
13.a Put what used to be your elbow along the cutting board, with what used to be your shoulder up in the air.
13.b. Scrape/push your biceps/triceps down towards the cutting board.
13.c. Remove your upper-arm bone.
You know lay our deboned carcass out flat.
Looking at it, you see that you are not all muscle and some places where you are all skin.
What you do, is take the extra muscle from your spine and place it in the skin spots.
You can also fillet your pecs to fill in the skinny spots in your chest.
The idea is to get a uniform layer of muscle covering the skin.
Season yourself with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Sew yourself (or truss yourself)