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Catering, Food Handling and Awareness *OnTopic* Forum to educate us on safe food handling. Not specifically for Catering or competition but overall health and keeping our families safe too.


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Unread 03-28-2012, 11:48 AM   #1
Pa_BBQ
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Default Freezing Raw Meat?

I am talking with some wholesale meat suppliers and can get some good deals on meats but have to buy them by the case.

I have always tried to cook meat fresh and not have to freeze it before cooking.

In meats such as Chickens, Brisket, Ribs and Shoulders is there any loss of quality if the meat is frozen for up to a month?

I would not be thawing and re freezing, would be fresh and then froze once.

Thanks
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Unread 03-28-2012, 12:18 PM   #2
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I buy brisket by the case and freeze with no problem. I don't like freezing chicken because of the discoloration of the bone when cooked. I've had no need to freeze ribs or shoulder.
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Unread 03-28-2012, 12:48 PM   #3
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As long as the meats are in airtight, vacuum packed packages, I have been able to freeze for several months without any problems. Even chicken.

If air gets to the meat, you have problems.

Right now, I have pork TL, ribeye steaks, whole chickens, chicken wings, sausages, and who knows what in my freezer, and I have a whole chicken brining right now, that was frozen for a good month, until yesterday. It's going on the rotisserie tonight.

When it comes to freezing, from my experience, air is the enemy.

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Unread 03-28-2012, 01:43 PM   #4
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You also need a good very cold freezer to get the ice to form quickly. The faster it freezes, the better the meat quality.
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Unread 03-28-2012, 01:51 PM   #5
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Thanks guys, that really helps. I just know buying by the case helps as far as costs go. I am really considering a commercial vacuum sealer for this reason.
Not only to make sure the raw meat is air tight, but then if I need to cook extra, can seal it legally.
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Unread 03-28-2012, 01:56 PM   #6
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Unless you are buying your meat right off the farm, chances are the meat you buy has been frozen already at least once anyways.

Most grocers get their meat from wholesalers frozen then thaw it before they display it.

Keep it airtight, freeze it cold and fast, you should be fine.
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Unread 03-28-2012, 04:16 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pa_BBQ View Post
I am talking with some wholesale meat suppliers and can get some good deals on meats but have to buy them by the case.

I have always tried to cook meat fresh and not have to freeze it before cooking.

In meats such as Chickens, Brisket, Ribs and Shoulders is there any loss of quality if the meat is frozen for up to a month?

I would not be thawing and re freezing, would be fresh and then froze once.

Thanks
Have you ask the wholesaler if you buy the meat will they store it and send it to you in the amounts you need at the time say 1 or 2 cases at a time. We use to do that at a restaurant allowing us to get a better price and not have to order in large amounts and store it at any one time. Most people do that with propane around here as well. The meat is rotated by the wholesaler so you are not getting cases of meat a year old.
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Unread 03-28-2012, 04:25 PM   #8
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As long as they are properly frozen and kept at a constant temperature(not subject to frequent defrost cycles), than you really shouldn't be able to tell the difference once cooked.
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Unread 03-28-2012, 04:45 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SirPorkaLot View Post
Unless you are buying your meat right off the farm, chances are the meat you buy has been frozen already at least once anyways.

Most grocers get their meat from wholesalers frozen then thaw it before they display it.

Keep it airtight, freeze it cold and fast, you should be fine.
Yeah, I was going to mention that, but I'm not sure how that applies to the OP's situation. At retail, there is a very good chance the meat was frozen at some time, but I don't know about commercial meat supplier.

I guess you can always ask.

BTW Pa_BBQ, I think a commercial vacuum sealer makes good sense for you, on multiple layers. I say, "go for it."

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Unread 03-28-2012, 08:36 PM   #10
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A vacuum sealer is worth the money if your buying big quantities and you want to insure it won't go bad.
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Unread 03-28-2012, 08:53 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pa_BBQ View Post
Thanks guys, that really helps. I just know buying by the case helps as far as costs go. I am really considering a commercial vacuum sealer for this reason.
Not only to make sure the raw meat is air tight, but then if I need to cook extra, can seal it legally.
just FYI, vacuum sealers are NOT allowed in a commercial setting.

ANY chicken you buy, unless amish or farm raised has been previously frozen.
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Unread 03-28-2012, 09:15 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bbq Bubba View Post
just FYI, vacuum sealers are NOT allowed in a commercial setting.

ANY chicken you buy, unless amish or farm raised has been previously frozen.
I thought models like this were allowed http://www.amazon.com/VacMaster-VP21.../dp/B001Q3LSW4
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Unread 03-29-2012, 07:11 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pa_BBQ View Post
I thought models like this were allowed http://www.amazon.com/VacMaster-VP21.../dp/B001Q3LSW4

Nope, at least not in my state. HD freaks out as soon as you tell them your removing all the air from a product as if its not handled properly its the perfect storm to start producing botchulism.

YMMV.
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Unread 03-29-2012, 09:16 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bbq Bubba View Post
Nope, at least not in my state. HD freaks out as soon as you tell them your removing all the air from a product as if its not handled properly its the perfect storm to start producing botchulism.

YMMV.
Same here. There are ways around it but you will at the very least haccp plan
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Unread 03-29-2012, 09:36 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeffc View Post
Same here. There are ways around it but you will at the very least haccp plan
Yup. I got half way into writing one myself before deciding it wasnt really worth the aggrivation.
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