"resting in the fridge" chickens froze up, now what?

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by happydog, Sep 25, 2011.

  1. happydog

    happydog Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I butchered them 2 weeks ago and put the whole carcasses in ziplock bags in the spare fridge to rest for a couple of days. Well, I got ambushed by a bunch of Life and today's the first free day I've had to finish processing them. Apparently I had the fridge turned down too low because all the chickens but one are frozen. (The one is really cold but still smells fresh, amazingly enough. I thought for sure they'd be spoiled by now.)

    I was planning to cut off the breasts and legs (our favorite parts) and vac seal them in food saver bags. The rest I was going to use for stock and canning.

    But now that they're already froze... it seems dumb to thaw them out, cut them up, and refreeze them. But I need to repackage them because won't they freezer burn in the ziplocks full of air? Or will it not hurt anything to thaw them out, cut up, and refreeze?

    What would you do or what would you advise me to do?

    Thanks for any help!
     
  2. galanie

    galanie Treat Dispenser No More

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    I would expel all the air you can and put in the freezer. Don't refreeze. I know others will chime in with more suggestions such as rewrapping, etc. but my main point is: Don't thaw and refreeze them.
     
  3. Oregon Blues

    Oregon Blues Overrun With Chickens

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    I'd package better and move to the freezer without thawing.

    You have no idea when they froze. They might have aged enough, they might not have. So when you go to eat one, don't make chicken critical for that night. If the legs wiggle easily when it is thawed, it is ready to eat. If the bird is still in rigor, place it in the fridge for a couple of days.

    Because not all the birds were frozen, I suspect that it took them awhile to freeze, so they are probably rested enough.

    Yes, a freshly killed chicken will easily make it for 2 weeks if it is kept really cold. Your birds should be fine. But remind me not to allow you to process any chickens for me.
     
  4. AZBootsie

    AZBootsie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I could be confused, but it looks like the birds have not been gutted?? Just killed, plucked and then frozen?? If this is the case, I would pitch them. You don't know how long they were in the fridge before they actually froze??

    Maybe I misunderstood. But if the birds have not been Eviscerated there is a really good chance of contamination. Not worth the risk.
     
  5. happydog

    happydog Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Fortunately the birds were gutted and thoroughly cleaned before refrigerating. It was my first time butchering and I was probably a little over enthusiastic about cleaning the carcasses.

    I pulled out the one that wasn't frozen yet and examined it closely. I was surprised that it wasn't the least bit smelly or slimy. In fact, to all appearances it seemed a lot fresher than supermarket chicken. I'm pretty finicky and I'd have no problems eating it. I cut it up and it's soaking in brine right now. Gonna have fried chicken and buttermilk biscuits tomorrow. [​IMG]

    I'll vacuum seal the rest of them and put them in the deep freeze. Thanks for the help!
     
  6. AZBootsie

    AZBootsie Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Very Good!!
     

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