Maximum time for duck in fridge?

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by jdywntr, Nov 15, 2011.

  1. jdywntr

    jdywntr Songster

    3,215
    187
    243
    Oct 31, 2009
    Somerville, AL
    Okay so I found lots of posts on making sure that you rest your bird before cooking but I could not find an answer to the longest you could keep them in the fridge.

    I will be processing my first duck, a Muscovy, for Thanksgiving dinner and I am not sure when I should "do the deed".

    So, to cook on a Thursday, would the previous Saturday be too early to slaughter? That is the only day that DH will be available to assist if needed. I think that I will be able to do it alone but would not mind having a back up. Otherwise, I can do it on any other day before.

    So, how long can you keep a fresh duck in the fridge?
    I am going to attempt to pluck the whole thing but have decided I will skin it or piece it out if it gets too time consuming (or I get annoyed, I don't always have alot of patience [​IMG] )

    Thanks.
     
  2. bargain

    bargain Love God, Hubby & farm

    8,372
    421
    326
    Apr 13, 2008
    Bowdon, GA
    Suggest no more than three days....3 days is the "rest period" we use. That's our rule of thumb here. You might find processing a bit easier if you add a bit of "dawn" or similar detergent to the hot scalding water. Hope this was helpful.
     
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2011
  3. wyoDreamer

    wyoDreamer Crowing

    4,657
    5,430
    411
    Nov 10, 2010
    NE Wisconsin
    I think you will be fine butchering on Saturday and not cooking it until Thursday. Make sure you do a really thourough job of cleaning out the cavity and rincing out under any of the loose skin. Get it as clean as youpossibly can - all the blood off as that will spoil first.

    Just keep it covered so it doesn't dry out and cold to keep any bacteria from growing. Keeping it below 40 degrees is the recommendation I believe. If you don't have room in your fridge, you can keep it in ice water in a cooler in a cool spot in your house or garage. It should be good for that long, just make sure to keep adding ice.

    I have forgotten store bought boneless-skinnless chicken breast in the fridge for 4 days and it was still good when I got back to it to cook (I definately would not recommend that practice to anyone). Who knows how long that had sat on the shelf in the store before I even brought it home. It definately was not fresh butchered on the day I purchased it.
     
  4. HorseFeatherz NV

    HorseFeatherz NV Eggink Chickens

    I have kept fresh, home processed birds - ducks, chickens and geese - in the fridge for up to a week. NO smell to the bird - not even that nasty smell that comes from "fresh grocery store" chicken meat.


    I DO keep mine covered in water that has been salted - not enough salt to brine (which is a heavy salt solution) but just enough to make the water slightly salty (kind of like I am cooking pasta). I am lazy and do not change the water [​IMG] daily or at all. The carcass goes into the water and comes out when I am ready to cook or freeze it.
     
  5. jdywntr

    jdywntr Songster

    3,215
    187
    243
    Oct 31, 2009
    Somerville, AL
    Okay thanks everyone. I'm a bit nervous as this will be my first time processing anything so having to strong arm DH as a backup would make me more comfortable. [​IMG] I am going to double check his schedule and see if he is going in late Monday so I could do the deed with backup at least.
     
  6. ShadyHoller

    ShadyHoller Chirping

    180
    8
    99
    Sep 12, 2010
    Willamette Valley
    Quote:That's totally consistent with what I do. In my view, people are often overly-concerned with using the meat as quickly as possible. I think it's important to keep in mind that with home-processed meat, we have more control over the food sanitation compared to high-volume industrial processing facilities, and our meat goes from the butcher table to the fridge, instead of going from the butcher table to the sorting/packing plant to the truck to the distribution center to another truck to the grocery store to the display case to your car to your fridge. Who knows how long ago that grocery store chicken was first dispatched?
     
  7. Quote:That's totally consistent with what I do. In my view, people are often overly-concerned with using the meat as quickly as possible. I think it's important to keep in mind that with home-processed meat, we have more control over the food sanitation compared to high-volume industrial processing facilities, and our meat goes from the butcher table to the fridge, instead of going from the butcher table to the sorting/packing plant to the truck to the distribution center to another truck to the grocery store to the display case to your car to your fridge. Who knows how long ago that grocery store chicken was first dispatched?

    it's at least 2 weeks old..

    I used to work in a poultry processing plant

    the chicken you buy at the grocery store is far from "fresh"
     
  8. Oregon Blues

    Oregon Blues Crowing

    5,531
    233
    273
    Apr 14, 2011
    Central Oregon
    I have no problem with keeping a home raised and processed bird in the fridge for an entire week. Just make sure it is chilled quickly, is carefully cleaned, and well wrapped to keep the air off of it, so it doesn't dry out or absorb refrigerator odors.

    With a store bought bird, I think 3 days is pushing your luck, but that bird already has a lot of time on it between processing and when you carry it home. You know for certain just exactly when your own home raised bird was processed and how it was handled.
     
  9. Clay Valley Farmer

    Clay Valley Farmer Songster

    739
    20
    121
    Sep 7, 2010
    YUP! Store chicken is 3 days this side of rotting. Would not surprise me if it was 1-2 weeks old by the time it hit the grocery store shelf.

    I'll be puting chicken processed Sunday from the fridge to the oven tonight, no worries.

    One thing that is importaint though if you want to keep the meat longer is get it chilled down under 40f as soon as possibleand the closer your fridge is to freezing the better 34F is great and meat will last much longer than if the temperature is close to or over the 40f danger zone.
     
  10. krcote

    krcote Songster

    2,104
    25
    204
    May 21, 2008
    Concord, NH
    We kept our 50 meat birds resting in the fridge for 6 days due to a scheduling issue much like yours before they could be put into the freezers. Mine were vacuum sealed individually, chilled to 33 degrees F, and turned out to be so tender and delicious!
     
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2011

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by: