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Thread: Defrosting/Working with Frozen Meat page

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    chiapoet's Avatar
    chiapoet is offline Junior Member
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    Defrosting/Working with Frozen Meat

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    Hello, I am new to Primal but have recognized the value of eating grass fed meats (and other high quality animal products) for quite some time, but I'm fairly new at cooking meat for myself.

    It seems that most recipes I encounter for meat, whether it's slow cooker, grilled, sauted, stir fried etc. are starting off with fresh or, what I assume must be, already defrosted meat.

    So my question is, what's the best way to defrost meats? And in certain cases should they not be defrosted at all? I assume for certain methods like using a slow cooker it doesn't matter? Is there some kind of comprehensive guide on this? I have cooked frozen fish often and I usually defrost it in the fridge on a plate covered with plastic wrap. It doesn't ever seem to get completely unfrozen even after 24 hours-there's a little iciness in the middle--but it seem to work well enough for baking or broiling. Is is the same for frozen meat and chicken?

    As a side note, I live in Texas and there is a store very close to me that sells frozen Slanker's Beef products which I know are great. However, I'm always kind of turned off because, especially in the steaks and roast cuts, there's kind of ice crystal formation going on within the package that reminds me of freezer burn. It may be that's just how packaged frozen meat looks and I'm being silly--any thoughts on this?

    I can get fresh (probably previous defrosted?) grass fed meat at Whole Foods but it's about a 50 minute drive away so it's not feasible or for me to go there each week.

    I apologize if this has been discussed before, I couldn't find in my search.

    Thanks!
    Nicole

  2. #2
    Dr. Bork Bork's Avatar
    Dr. Bork Bork is offline Senior Member
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    I take my meat out of the freezer in the morning, and it's usually defrosted by 5p when I start cooking dinner. Alternatively, you could take it out the evening before and throw it in the fridge in the morning for cooking that night.
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    NorthernMonkeyGirl's Avatar
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    Or you can be as disorganised as me and allow for some extra, gentle heating at the beginning of the recipe to defrost your lump of meat - allowing for the extra liquid produced

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    chiapoet's Avatar
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    Do you take the meat of the shrinked wrapped package to defrost in the fridge? if so do you put on a plate with plastic wrap or what?

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    namelesswonder's Avatar
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    Freezer burn usually discolors the meat, it's just just ice crystals. I pop my frozen meat (separated into freezer bags after I buy it so it's 1 lb/bag for one meal) into the fridge the night before, or on the counter the morning of, if it's a chilly day (my kitchen has no heater & we have the heater off now anyway). If you're baking, yeah, you can defrost it as part of the cooking process, you just have to allow for the extra time and not overcook anything else in the dish.

    In a pinch, I'll fill a bowl with warmish water and keep the bagged meat in there, changing the water out for warm water again as it cools. Room temp water will defrost it too, but the heat makes it go faster and won't cook it as long as it's not steaming hot.

    I don't know why but I never leave meat in its original store packaging, it grosses me out. I wouldn't freeze it in that either. The meat should be on a plate, no plastic wrap or any packaging needed, to defrost via microwave.
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    Most of the meat I purchase is frozen, because I buy from local farmers offering grassfed/pastured meat. They all freeze the cuts as soon as they're cut, inside vacuum-sealed bags. Rarely do I see any freezer-burn. I think it's because it's vacuum-sealed - - there's no exposure to air. I wouldn't want anything with icicles on the surface.

    I defrost my meat in the fridge, inside its vacuum-sealed bag. For 1-1.5 lbs, say a lb of ground beef, 24 hours seems to be sufficient. Bigger cuts take longer though, so I have to plan ahead. A 4-5 lb roast might take 3 full days to defrost. You can speed up the process by putting the meat (inside a waterproof bag) into a bowl (or plugged sink) full of very cold water. I have used this trick many times when I forget to take meat out in time and only have half the time I'd normally need.

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    sakura_girl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KimInGA View Post
    I defrost my meat in the fridge, inside its vacuum-sealed bag. For 1-1.5 lbs, say a lb of ground beef, 24 hours seems to be sufficient.
    Whaaat my 1lb of vacuum-sealed ground beef takes at least 48 hours to defrost in the fridge. And that's on the stiffer side when it finally gets into the pan. Yours must be super flattened or something.

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