Rigor Mortis after Turkey Processing

Discussion in 'Meat Birds ETC' started by Cruzin4us, Nov 14, 2017.

  1. Cruzin4us

    Cruzin4us In the Brooder

    Aug 31, 2015
    Forgive me, but I'm new to this...

    We received a 33.8 oz turkey for Thanksgiving :celebrateand I'm not sure exactly what to do with the thing.


    Turkey processed on Friday, we received the turkey on Sunday.
    Our Thanksgiving is being held on the Saturday after Thanksgiving which is 13 days out.

    We stuck our boy in the freezer because he didn't exactly fit in the fridge very well and because we thought he wouldn't stay fresh for an additional 13 days.

    So....after reading, I found we should have left the turkey in the fridge for 3-4 days in order for the rigor mortis to relax?? Since that didn't happen, should we thaw him out a couple of days sooner and let him relax in the fridge or are we pretty much SOL and going to have a tough, stiff old bird?

    I'm used to cooking 23-25 lb birds, but this dinosaur is a going to be a bit of a challenge.

    So....this brings me to my final question....will he be tough? We will brine him for 24 hours. He is a young turkey, just BIG.
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2017
  2. rjohns39

    rjohns39 Addict

    Aug 20, 2015
    Smith County, TN
    What kind of a turkey is it? I'm guessing broad breasted vice heritage. How old was it when processed?
  3. ChickenCanoe

    ChickenCanoe Free Ranging

    Nov 23, 2010
    St. Louis, MO
    Is that 33 lb. 8 oz. or 33.8 oz.?
    You can release rigor before or after freezing. I'd start thawing in the fridge 4 days before eating. If it is a free range heritage bird, it will need to be cooked much slower on lower heat than you are used to cooking store birds. Free range and heritage birds grow slower, they use their muscles more so they need special care to tenderize those muscles.
    Store birds are basically mush that can be seasoned any way you want.
    Pastured heritage birds carry their own flavor.

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