Deep Freeze Questions

Discussion in 'Cooks' Corner' started by jmoney, Jul 20, 2011.

  1. jmoney

    jmoney Member

    Messages:
    14
    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2011
    I apologize if this is not the proper place to put this, but I have a couple questions


    First, last summer my deep freezer was was in our garage and the breaker flipped, twice. I did not discover it the second time until it was too late, and most of the meat had gone bad. The smell, is awful. I scrubbed the unit clean with some 409, and moved it indoors flipped it back on and stuck a baking soda freshener inside of it, this has not resolved the foul odor, and subsequently I have not placed any meat inside of it. What would be the best solution to this?

    Second. After I pick up my meat from the processors this year, is there any advantage to vacuum sealing everything? Or will it all be fine and avoid freezer burn in the paper wrappers?
     
  2. trebark

    trebark Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,475
    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2008
    Rinse your freezer out with a light bleach solution (1 or 2oz of bleach to a gallon of water). that will sanitize the freezer. Then set it on its coldest setting and put the baking soda in there. That's what I would do.

    In terms of vacuum packing meat, I've never done it. I butcher my own deer and wrap everything in plastic wrap and have not had any problems with freezer burn.

    Because I butcher my own deer and it's easy, it always makes me wonder why anyone would let someone else handle their butchering chores. Aren't you worried that the meat you're getting back is not yours? how about the processor's sanitation? I've heard and seen some real horror stories.
     

  3. bigngreen

    bigngreen Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    5,840
    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2008
    The bleach and hot water is the best and only thing that will work, may be a loss though. Vacuum packaging is great but you need to watch what mil thickness you are getting, under 4mills is no good however it has no freezer burn advantage to wrapping with clear film and then freezer paper. Used to be a wildgame processor :D
     
  4. jmoney

    jmoney Member

    Messages:
    14
    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2011
    I will let this freezer thaw out, and give the bleach solution a try, I didn't know if that would damage the freezer that is why I just used 409 in the first place.

    Thanks for the advice guys
     
  5. trebark

    trebark Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,475
    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2008
    I wouldn't worry about using hot water. It's the bleach that is doing the work.
     
  6. WyoElk2Hunt

    WyoElk2Hunt Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,193
    Joined:
    Aug 15, 2009
    Bleach and water mix. I use a vacuum sealer all the time. I process my own meat because of most locker plants take the weight of meat you have and mix it with others to make a batch of hamburger, sasuage, ETC and give you back the weight you turned in but you have no idea how the other animals were taken care of. If you take your elk to a state that doesn't have any Elk the meat packing might have a few samples of your elk since he doesn't see elk very often. Vacuum sealing is usually good for two years in frezzer. Like always you get what you pay for. Buy a good vacuum sealer.
     
  7. jmoney

    jmoney Member

    Messages:
    14
    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2011
    I got my freezer outside to let the ice that has come back thaw out, I am going to try to mix up a bleach mix tomorrow and give it another good scrub.

    Just FYI, there is not even a trace of blood left in this thing from the last time I cleaned it.

    Also, I would love to process my own meat, however until I have my own place to hunt, I don't see this being a possibility, I ask for no meat to be added at the processors, and have turned right around and walk out of processors before when I have seen less than savory conditions.
     
  8. trebark

    trebark Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,475
    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2008
    What does having your own place to hunt have to do with processing your own deer? I have always hunted on someone else's property. Heck, I have processed deer in a one bedroom apartment!

    So here's what you do...

    1. Shoot deer
    2. gut deer
    3. hang deer in tree and skin and quarter deer
    4. put backstraps, inner loins and quarters into clean garbage bags and put all of them into a large cooler with some ice.
    5. take cooler back to your kitchen and put all meat into your refrigerator
    6. cut/process meat and wrap for freezer. process one quarter per night.
    7. after four nights, the job is done.

    Here's some more instruction and what your venison should look like once it is all cut from the bone...

    The Locavore Hunter™: How to Process Your Own Deer
     
  9. jmoney

    jmoney Member

    Messages:
    14
    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2011
    I always thought it had to be hung in a cooler for a bit, especially if you like the hams to be jerkied...which I do.
     
  10. trebark

    trebark Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,475
    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2008
    While it's nice to 'age' your deer, it is not necessary.

    Making jerky is easy. Lots of good recipes out there and dehydraters are inexpensive.
     
  11. bigngreen

    bigngreen Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    5,840
    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2008
    Wild game should be processed as fast as you can after it has cooled for best results and flavor. The reasoning is that wild game has no fat in the meat so as the animal hangs it dries out and as this happens it concentrates the "game" flavor. If you shoot a deer and get it cooled out over night and cut it the next morning you will never go back to hanging.
    A deer skinned and in a 36 degree cooler will loose 7 pounds of water weight in a week. An average deer will yield 40 ish pounds of meat so you can kinda do the math on how your going to concentrate all the flavor in the remaining meat.

    As to most meat lockers mixing red meat, I have never known anyone who mixed any kind of red meat which is steaks, roasts and burger, between customers that stayed in business.
    Sausage is another thing, I've done it both ways in batches and as keep separate, I prefer to mix sausage between the species and run large batches for two reasons. One you flavors are much more even with a much better over all product and two, I can keep prices down!
    I used to get questioned a few times a day about this because people think they have the best meat and don't want it mixed when they order sausage, my response was to take them back into the cutting room and into the cooler and show them the quality of our work, in five years of running that shop I never had one customer walk out and many were flat blown away by the quality of our sausage and our way of doing it. This only applies to sausage, red meat must be returned to the customer or you wouldn't be in business long but it is easy to give the customer the best product and his own meat with red meat just by the way you process it.
     
  12. txnub

    txnub Active Member

    Messages:
    36
    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2008
    It seems like I have heard that crumpling up newspapers and placing them in the freezer will help get rid of the odors. Maybe its one of those old wives tales, but I thought I would throw it out there.

    +1 on processing your own meat.
     
  13. Speedo

    Speedo Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    221
    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2010
    Deer might be a little different because of the size but we typically hang a moose for a couple of weeks before we get it out of the field. A couple of years ago my wife shot a moose on Sept. 2nd and we didn't process it until the 26th and it was excellent. We try to be in our hunting camp by opening day, it takes us 2 days of travel from the time we hit the trail till we make it into our hunting camp. Then we stay through the season (Sept. 1-20 in the area we hunt) grizzly and black bear are open year round. When we could still get caribou tags easily we held off shooting them till after the 10th because they didn't hang as well as a moose. I know of a couple people who hang their moose for a month after they get it out of the field and other than developing a thick rind of dried meat on the outside they have never had a problem with spoilage or gamey taste.

    Gus
     
  14. Jerry M

    Jerry M Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    319
    Joined:
    Aug 20, 2006
    "...4. put backstraps, inner loins and quarters into clean garbage bags and put all of them into a large cooler with some ice...."

    Some manufactures of garbage bags have insecticide in them to control bugs. Suggest you read the label carefully.

    When the freezer thaws fill it to the brim with water and three or four packages of baking soda. Let it sit for a day or two.