I'm fixing a chicken for supper. It's a 6lb whole chicken in-a-bag I got cheap near its end date. Took it home and stuck it in the freezer - the thick plastic it was encased in did really well.
I was planning to fix it Friday (frozen does fine in a Crock Pot, as long as you allow plenty of time), but I read the directions - turned out it has the giblets inside it. Some like them for gravy, but I don't, and they're not supposed to be cooked together anyway.
One main way to defrost big things is to soak it in water, the other is to put it in the fridge. I chose to combine ways, partly since I then wanted to wait several days, and partly because I thought my fridge might be too cold to thaw it. I put the chicken, still in plastic, in a stock pot (which I thought I might need, since the chicken wouldn't fit entirely in my Crock Pot), covered the chicken with water, covered it and put it in the fridge. The next evening, I checked on it - the chicken was encased in almost 1/4" of ice. I dumped the water and loose ice, removed the coating ice (which was mostly loose), and refilled the water. Checked it again Monday, and the water was still water and the chicken seemed soft. Drained the water and put the chicken back in the fridge, still in the pot, for later.
Last night, I took the chicken out, opened it, removed the paper-wrapped giblets, and, per the directions, rinsed the whole thing inside and out. Not difficult, since it's hollow all the way through from top to bottom with holes on each end.
Then I decided to pull the skin off. I normally do that before cooking pieces. And this was much easier than with pieces - it was basically like taking its clothes off. Slid a knife under the skin and "unzipped" it down the front. Then pulled the skin off one-piece-pajamas style, over the legs and such. The wings wouldn't cooperate; the skin tore around one wingtip, but I had to cut the skin around the other. Then I pulled off the larger fat globs; not all, since it will add flavor. Then I re-rinsed it.
Washed my hands, put the skin and fat in the bag the chicken came in, put that in a small shopping bag and tied that shut, then put that in another bag and tied that shut. Then put it in the trash.
Sprinkled cajun seasoning inside the chicken, and put it in the Crock Pot, where it's now squishy enough to fit. Then sprinkled a tsp of seasoning on top, and put 1/8c of water on that, to have the seasoning run down the sides. Sprinkled another 3tsp across the top, to cover all visible areas well, and sprayed water over it to wetten it all.
Then put the crock in the fridge until this morning. Put it back in the holder about 9:30 on high (to warm up), then on low about 9:50. The pot's now got liquid about half-way up, a perfect gravy base. It's likely already almost done, but I don't get off for another 6 1/2 hours. That's another good thing about Crock Pots - they don't overcook, other than maybe veggies getting too mushy.
I think I'll start looking for these more often.