European method of chilling vs American method. Can anyone speak from experience on this or offer a

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by deedles, Aug 19, 2016.

  1. deedles

    deedles Songster

    Apr 5, 2007
    Hey guys, during the Mother Earth Fair this summer one speaker talked about European vs American way of chilling of butchered chickens. What I remember was the European way air chilled the chickens for a number of days, effectively 'aging' the meat a bit before freezing. Has anyone or does anyone here have experience with this at all? She said the aging process made for a much more tender meat... she was talking like several days in the fridge (after the initial cool down in the ice bath) before freezing.

    She also said bagging the chickens before they go into the ice bath made for crispier skin as the skin hadn't soaked up all that water AND you avoid the communal germ bath, which might be a lesser issue with home raised birds anyway.

  2. Ulladh

    Ulladh Chirping

    Aug 3, 2015
    I know that is how we do our turkeys at least, we are Butchers. Definitely though I dobt that bigger processors do it the same way simply for time efficiency and space. But I definitely think it adds to the meat, it isnt as such aging as you think with cattle maybe and there is a set time period.

    What then is the American way? Of course the main issue is having a big enough fridge to hang them in, we have walk in Fridges so no issue.
  3. deedles

    deedles Songster

    Apr 5, 2007
    Nice! Thank you for your reply

    I think the American method is water chilling and then freezing. Some large processors are looking at air chilling due to water issues.

    So, will you outline what your process is for your turkeys? We like the idea of the aging period but not sure the timeline. 2 or 3 days as I remember.
  4. junebuggena

    junebuggena Crowing

    Apr 17, 2015
    Long Beach, WA
    I always put the birds in the fridge to rest for a few days before putting them in the freezer.
  5. deedles

    deedles Songster

    Apr 5, 2007
    How long do you guys keep them in the ice bath after they are cleaned up?
  6. Bigshooter

    Bigshooter In the Brooder

    May 9, 2016
    I do 1hr in ice water, pat dry, then place in the fridge for 3 or 4 days. I can say without any doubt that letting them sit in the fridge for a few days makes them more tender. I have done tests with ice bath birds, vs 1 day in the fridge, up to 4 days in the fridge birds. And the birds that have sat in the fridge the longest are always the most tender. This is with dual propose birds, that are between 14 - 20 weeks old.

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