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HeSmellsLikeSmoke
07-10-2007, 11:58 AM
I have always believed that freezing meet is harmful to the final product. This seems very relevant to competitions.

This may only be a marketing ploy, but it does fall in line with what I have always thought:

from http://www.mybutcher.com/stores/xq/xfm/Store_id.634/page_id.61/qx/store.htm

"Why Fresh Is Better
When you are buying steaks online, you want to get a good value, and you want to get great quality, right? We do to! That means we want unfrozen steaks:

Over 60% of the weight of meat is water.
When water freezes, it forms ice crystals.
Ice crystals severely damage the cells of meat on a microscopic level.
This damage will affect the taste, juicyness, and texture of the meat.

So why would anyone want to sell frozen meat? The reason others ship their meat frozen is primarily because it starts out frozen before they even ship it. Instead of using fresh meat on demand for your order, most competitors maintain frozen inventories of steaks sitting in their warehouse, and select your order from this supply. So not only is the meat damaged from the freezing process, but you have no way to tell how old your steaks really are."

What is the collective wisdom on this?

Trout_man22
07-10-2007, 12:07 PM
Good question, not all meat is shipped to the market frozen, I will admit most is, however CAB is not "supposed to be." I do know that the more meat is frozen and thawed the "musher" it gets. Also all pork is supposed to spend at least 30 days at 30 deg or below to kill Trichinosis (if present.)

Bigmista
07-10-2007, 12:22 PM
IS trichnosis even a factor anymore? I thought that was pretty much bred out of pigs.

The_Kapn
07-10-2007, 12:34 PM
Never noticed any difference.

TIM

CharlieBeasley
07-10-2007, 12:36 PM
Alton Brown had a special on freezing Strawberries and to prevent the damage on the strawberries he quick froze them using dry ice in a bowl in the freezer and placing the strawberries on the dry ice for a time. Having said this I think a quick freeze is what is used by the meat producers. I don't know?

Puppyboy
07-10-2007, 12:37 PM
I get my spares frozen in cryo.

Can you even taste a difference unless obviuos freezer burn?

butts a fire
07-10-2007, 01:27 PM
Since the cell walls are different between beef and pork (thanks Alton) freezing is not as big of a deal with beef as it is with pork. Having said that For competition I do not mind using a brisket that has been frozen in cryovac but I always use pork that has not been frozen (at least by me) for comps.

adventurelarry
07-10-2007, 01:33 PM
My old boss freezes green unroasted coffee rapidly to, if I remember corectly, -40, and after defrosting the coffee has suffered no cell damage. When experimenting with a slower freezing process, the cells did suffer some damage. The flash freezing process clearly effects the water in the cells differently than the slow toss into a home freezer method.

While meat is clearly a different 'animal' I wonder if the method of freezing, as well as the speed at which the meat is frozen would make a difference. I suspect it would, and since I do not have a flash freezer someone else would have to experiment.

--Larry

BBQ_Mayor
07-10-2007, 01:36 PM
I don't like using meat that has been frozen so I'll buy fresh. Or what i think is fresh. If it's not frozen when I buy it, then it's fresh to me.

Anyway, I have frozen my briskets before and not noticed a difference.

LostNation
07-10-2007, 06:28 PM
I use frozen meat at every contest. We pick up butts and briskets and freeze them for later use. Rib's I freeze to travel with, less ice.

Rub
07-10-2007, 07:37 PM
I trim my fresh ribs and chicken at home, vac pack it, then freeze them to take to the contest. So far so good. I also freeze my briskets.

Plowboy
07-10-2007, 07:56 PM
Since the cell walls are different between beef and pork (thanks Alton) freezing is not as big of a deal with beef as it is with pork. Having said that For competition I do not mind using a brisket that has been frozen in cryovac but I always use pork that has not been frozen (at least by me) for comps.

Ditto to that. Pork is just too cheap not to buy fresh. I don't mind frozen ribs and frozen brisket is fine by me. I'd rather not use frozen chicken just because the bone turns purple-ish.

tony76248
07-10-2007, 08:35 PM
I freeze my ribs and chickens and can't notice the difference. I do know that an onion loses it's structure as does a banana.

When someone tells me they can tell my meat has been frozen, I will consider the difference, but until then nahhhhh.

HeSmellsLikeSmoke
07-10-2007, 08:39 PM
With all due respect, just because someone has always used frozen meat at competitions, even if they always place high, does not answer the question posed.

It would be very informative to actually do a blind judging of both fresh and frozen meat to see if there really is a detectable difference.

Have someone who always does well in competitions with beef and ribs, do two practice boxes of brisket and two of ribs, all of them cooked the same way, to competition standards. One of each that has been kept unfrozen and one of each that has been frozen. Then have experienced certified judges score for tenderness/texture just like at a sanctioned event.

This might not settle the issue once and for all, but should be well worth the time and trouble since everyone is looking for an edge at competitions.

The_Kapn
07-10-2007, 08:44 PM
With all due respect, just because someone has always used frozen meat at competitions, even if they always place high, does not answer the question posed.

It would be very informative to actually do a blind judging of both fresh and frozen meat to see if there really is a detectable difference.

Have someone who always does well in competitions with beef and ribs, do two practice boxes of brisket and two of ribs, all of them cooked the same way, to competition standards. One of each that has been kept unfrozen and one of each that has been frozen. Then have experienced certified judges score for tenderness/texture just like at a sanctioned event.

This might not settle the issue once and for all, but should be well worth the time and trouble since everyone is looking for an edge at competitions.

What a great idea!

Please let us know how it went :lol: :lol:

TIM

Trout_man22
07-11-2007, 11:25 AM
IS trichnosis even a factor anymore? I thought that was pretty much bred out of pigs.

True for most pigs however home reared pigs and wild game can still get it. By the way it's 20 day at -15. I was wrong again.

AlabamaGrillBillies
07-11-2007, 02:53 PM
I used to not care, but now being more anal at comps, I tend to use only fresh (or what my butcher tells me is fresh) meat. For everyday cooking I use both.