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 Post subject: Resting processed chooks
PostPosted: Tue Aug 24, 2010 11:01 pm 
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Junior Champion Bird
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I was wondering how members here rest their processed chooks and for how long? I have found that mine tend to be stiff even after 2 days in the freezer. I pretty much freeze the carcass straight away. Am I doing it wrong?


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 24, 2010 11:12 pm 
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Golden Phoenix
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No ... I'm finding some of my processed birds need quite a few days to rest. The usual quote is 24-48 hours but I've had guys relaxing (in the fridge) only after 3-4 days. It may be related to age - the older they get, the longer they need, maybe ... some of the cockerels we've just done are getting older (and tougher!! - best for pies now).

Problem is, of course, that 3-4 days is about as long as I want to keep raw chicken hanging around! 5 days is my limit; after that, it's cooked, regardless (or the dogs get it).

I actually think immediate freezing and later thawing improves the resting time ...


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 24, 2010 11:19 pm 
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Golden Swan
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i just bung mine straight in the freezer and then thaw and use when i am ready. They have all seemed fine. I would think the freezing and thawing would relax the meat.

NellyG

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 24, 2010 11:22 pm 
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Junior Champion Bird
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Thanks Infoaddict.

I will let them rest a little longer. I didn't know that it is fine to have them in the fridge for 2-3 days. I tend to freeze all meat straight away, where possible.

I have another rooster in the freezer, I'll cook it this weekend. Hopefully he will be more relaxed and more tender.


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PostPosted: Tue Aug 24, 2010 11:24 pm 
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Junior Champion Bird
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Do commercial poultry processors rest the chooks as well or are commercial meat chickens "naturally" tender and no resting is required?


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 25, 2010 11:45 am 
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Old Mother Goose
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I let mine sit for about 2 days in the fridge, and then either freeze or use. If frozen they get another day in the fridge to thaw out as well.



Ron (Next lot are almost 2 weeks old, another night of processing in 10-12 weeks.)

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 25, 2010 5:00 pm 
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Golden Phoenix
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chookyperth wrote:
Do commercial poultry processors rest the chooks as well or are commercial meat chickens "naturally" tender and no resting is required?


The resting is actually to get through rigor mortis, which affects all living things after they die. I assume that meat chickens need to wait through rigor; I have no idea how long it takes.

I'm starting to wonder whether the age theory has any basis in fact, or whether I need to look for another reason why my chooks need a few days before they're ready. I think temperature affects rigor - our fridge might be a bit cool, maybe?

If you're quick, you can cook the meat before it goes into rigor. You need to kill, pluck, gut, and have it cooking within 30mins though. It's do-able because we proudly did it for the most recent bird (butterflied and BBQd).

Pity he was inedibly tough but I put that down to age rather than rigor, as even the skin was tough. Must have been that vital 3 weeks between "still ok to roast" and "time to poach". We minced the roasted meat afterwards and it was fantastic, so no wastage :)


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 21, 2011 5:25 pm 
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Showy Hen
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Hi, I thought I would add that at my place it is done a little different.
After the bird has been killed (breaking its neck, so the head is still attached) and after it has been plucked, we hang it upside down by its legs in the bathroom shower overnight. (It’s still got its guts and everything inside) it is a lot easier to cut the head off and joint the legs and clean out the insides the next day. Anyway this is our resting process.


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 21, 2011 6:39 pm 
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Flock Master
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I did a brahma rooster last weekend and he was tough as old boots. We killed him in the morning of saturday, did all the cleaning/plucking and kept him in the fridge until Sunday and cooked him up in a roast...it was disgusting, even the skin was tough!

When I had my two steers done, the butcher rested the meat for a week in the portable fridge, then came back and did all the cuts..... next time I will also rest the chook for longer, cos that Brahma was the pits!

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PostPosted: Fri Oct 21, 2011 9:57 pm 
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Golden Phoenix
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Age is related to toughness as well, of course.

There was another thread about resting which was informative - apparently it's temperature that determines how long it needs to rest for. So in the fridge, it's two days. At a cool room temperature - or bathroom temperature ;) - maybe 8 hours.

So I'm going to start defrosting in the laundry. Have already tested on one batch and definitely seems to be a better result.


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 21, 2011 11:29 pm 
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Golden Swan
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OK that sounds good thinking info. I might try defrosting at room temp too and see what the effect is.

NellyG

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PostPosted: Fri Oct 21, 2011 11:45 pm 
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Golden Cockatoo
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mmmmm i just froze my bird's meat and put it in the freezer, and it turned out quite fine. i don't know if there is an actual need to rest poultry, and i would be wary of the hygiene protocol.

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PostPosted: Sat Oct 22, 2011 10:49 pm 
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Golden Phoenix
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It needs to come out of rigor before being cooked, depending on how you're cooking it. Apparently you can stew or slow-cook when still in rigor, but roasting or other quick cooking methods doesn't work - you essentially end up with inedible rubber.

These are the other threads on the topic that I've started - I've been musing on this a bit lately! viewtopic.php?f=14&t=8008029 and viewtopic.php?f=11&t=8007802

And this is a fantastically useful link that someone posted in one of those threads: http://www.wedlinydomowe.com/sausage-ma ... tion/aging

Defrosting overnight out of the fridge should not be a problem unless in very high temperatures. Coolroom temperatures of up to 16C (the ideal temperature for eggs, apparently) should be fine.

One thing I have noticed is that home-processed chooks do still ooze a few juices and, if put in the freezer directly after killing, those juices defrost first. They can smell very "off" while the bird's still defrosting in the fridge and I've almost completely thrown out a bird because I thought the whole thing was off. Then I washed it clean and re-checked and it was perfectly fine. Now I completely understand the reasoning for those absorbent bits in supermarket chicken.

I may need to start putting a fresh clean Chux or something similarly absorbent under my frozen chooks before freezing them. It doesn't seem to be an issue with ones processed and placed in the fridge for use within the next few days.

What I'll trial next is processing, leaving the bird out of the fridge and seeing the shortest time before I can use it (apparently it should be about 8 hours; so a morning killing should result in that evening's dinner). Except I've missed the window for the season - I wouldn't try that in summer! - so shall report on results about May next year :)


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 23, 2011 9:01 am 
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Proud Rooster
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We generally leave ours for two days in the fridge; irregardless of meat type. If it's winter and we've done something at night; sometimes we'll leave it to hang (such as someone said above about in their bathroom); but in general it's done to the point it's ready to be put in the oven; then allowed to rest; and then after two days; put in the freezer if we're not using it strait away. This goes for poultry; rabbits; etc. - it does absolutely make a better result; tastes better and has a MUCH better texture. This does include actual commercial meat birds - we have bought some at some stages; and yes; it does still make a big difference.

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 24, 2011 9:41 am 
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Champion Bird
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Did anyone watch that show 'Kill it, cook it and eat it'? I found it very interesting that the bloke that charges 20 pounds a bird hangs his for two weeks...... with the guts still in. Obviously in a cool room

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