Cryo vacuum

Submitted: Saturday, Mar 21, 2015 at 11:44
ThreadID: 117151 Views:2528 Replies:7 FollowUps:9
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For a long trip I ordered cryo-vacuumed meat at a butcher. Now I wanted to pick it up and it was only partly frozen. The butcher said I prepared it too late and I should pick it up later.

Now my questions: isn't the meat instantly frozen when it comes out of the cryo vacuum process? I thought they use liquid nitrogen or something.

Thus the next question is can I trust the butcher that it just has to freeze longer or has the meat come 'unfrozen' again and thus not a good idea to freeze again and eat later?

Thanks
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Reply By: Member - John - Saturday, Mar 21, 2015 at 11:56

Saturday, Mar 21, 2015 at 11:56
G'day, cryo vaccing is a process that takes the air out of the packaging, it does not freeze the meat at all. The process is designed for meat to last up to six weeks or so with refrigeration, no freezing required.
John and Jan

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Follow Up By: Alloy c/t - Sunday, Mar 22, 2015 at 16:18

Sunday, Mar 22, 2015 at 16:18
Although true that it is not absolutely necessary to freeze Cryo-VAC foodstuffs - raw meat - pre cooked dishes etc still need serious refrigeration , anything above 4c will see the foods spoil , should be frozen if keeping for longer than 5/7 days …...
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Follow Up By: Member - John - Sunday, Mar 22, 2015 at 16:36

Sunday, Mar 22, 2015 at 16:36
Alloy c/t, have never frozen cryo vacced meat and have kept red meat , steak roasts etc for weeks in the fridge and have had no side effects when consumed..........
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Follow Up By: howie - Saturday, Mar 28, 2015 at 02:15

Saturday, Mar 28, 2015 at 02:15
i don't freeze my vacuum packed food, keeps for a few weeks.
always put meat in the bottom of the fridge to keep the temp constant.
get the food packed 'flat' so you can layer it in the bottom of the fridge.
hey, have you thought about buying one?
i use mine all the time when buying bulk food and, you don't open the butcher supplied sausages in the middle of no-where and find they taste like sawdust.

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Reply By: Member - John and Val - Saturday, Mar 21, 2015 at 11:56

Saturday, Mar 21, 2015 at 11:56
I have never heard of using liquid nitrogen to instantly freeze the meat. Maybe happens in big bulk/commercial meat processing plants??? For that matter I have never heard of anyone asking the butcher to freeze the meat after vacuum packing it, and if you do your vacuum packing at home you would just freeze it yourself in the freezer. If in a caravan park use the facilities in the camp kitchen. I think you can trust the butcher to do the right thing by you. Also I think (havent checked but you can google) that its now considered OK/safe to refreeze red meat - certainly we have done so occasionally and lived to tell the tale.

Cheers,

Val.
J and V
"Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted."
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Reply By: gbc - Saturday, Mar 21, 2015 at 11:58

Saturday, Mar 21, 2015 at 11:58
Trust your butcher.
Cryogenics - the art of making things very cold
Cry-o-vac - a proprietary name for a machine that sucks air out of bags then seals them.
He cut you meat, put it in bags, sucked the air out, then put the bags in the freezer. They just haven't had time to freeze yet which means the whole process took place less than a day ago.
With that or he hasn't paid his power bill and you're going to be crook as a chook a long way from home.
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Follow Up By: gbc - Saturday, Mar 21, 2015 at 12:07

Saturday, Mar 21, 2015 at 12:07
Either that or ..........
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Reply By: cookie1 - Saturday, Mar 21, 2015 at 12:49

Saturday, Mar 21, 2015 at 12:49
On advice from a butcher...

never buy cryovaced meat as you cannot know whether the meat is good or not until you cut it open - typically thawing it first by then it's too late. We have never been sick in the remote places we go to but then I don't want to either.

Never had a bad bit of meat from him and we've been going there for many many years.

I bought a Sunbeam Cryovac machine and do it myself knowing what it is like before packing and / or prepare it for a meal such as marinade or doing dishes such as Bolognaise sauce or butter chicken etc that way all we need to do is thaw and re-heat.
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Follow Up By: Member - peter w2 (VIC) - Saturday, Mar 21, 2015 at 19:39

Saturday, Mar 21, 2015 at 19:39
u dont need to freeze the meat,,freezing uses too much power
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Follow Up By: cookie1 - Sunday, Mar 22, 2015 at 13:44

Sunday, Mar 22, 2015 at 13:44
We always freeze it, been doing it for years, the Waeco has no issues with keeping it all frozen and I know I can be confident that nothing is going to spoil and give us bad stomachs or dirrhea as that can be deadly out there.

cheers
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Follow Up By: Member - johnat - Sunday, Mar 22, 2015 at 14:21

Sunday, Mar 22, 2015 at 14:21
Your butcher is telling you porkies!
Buying vacuum packed (to avoid using a proprietory term) meat is every bit as good as buying fresh from the butcher. In fact, because the date of packing is usually shown, you have a better idea of when it should be used by than meat that might have been out in the butcher's display case for the whole day (and possibly even some of yesterday) with very little atmosphere/temperature control.
We have a commercial strength vac-packing machine, use it to pack dehydrated meals for 2 (there's just the two off us) and rehydrate when we need them. OR we pack for sous-vide cooking.
The Sunbeam is not a cryovac, it is just a benchtop vacuum packer, and will not get all of the air out, so you still need to be careful. Freezing after the Sunbeam would be a good idea, as that way you have portion control plus freezing.
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Follow Up By: cookie1 - Sunday, Mar 22, 2015 at 15:22

Sunday, Mar 22, 2015 at 15:22
I typically buy on the day that he gets his delivery - his advice again as he knows the sort of trips we do we get the freshest possible.

I know what you mean with meat in the trays in the shops, particularly when you occasionally see flies in said window.

Listening to the radio the other day it has been revealed that some companies are "re-dating" food instead of throwing it out so this makes me rather concerned. The food industry in Australia needs a bloody good shakeup IMO with proper food labelling laws including country of origin. The last "shake up" to my memory was the Garibaldi incident.

Yes your right, it isn't a Cryovac but a simple vacuum sealer which as you say doesn't remove all of the air thus why we freeze it as well, and portion control is a big factor too as we really don't want or can afford to overpack or indeed underpack food so allow for about 250g for each person (blokes).

Sous vide cooking - sounds like we need to come with you on our next trip, sounds very nice indeed.

cheers
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Reply By: Member - Scott M (NSW) - Sunday, Mar 22, 2015 at 14:05

Sunday, Mar 22, 2015 at 14:05
Three suggestions for freezing & storing cryo-vac meat (apart from having a reliable butcher..)

1. if you are travelling over rough/corrugated roads, get the butcher to double bag it (vacuum the 1st one then the 2nd one) - this will avoid potential spoilage longer if vibrations ruba hole in the outer bag..

2. freeze it as you're going to stack it in the fridge/freezer in the vehicle/trailer - woud suggest as flat as possible at this will flat pack better in the fridge.

3. Suasages should be frozen 1st by the butcher then vacuum sealed otherwise the suction will suck the guts out of the snags ... however our local butcher has some knack of doing this without freezing....
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Follow Up By: howie - Saturday, Mar 28, 2015 at 01:59

Saturday, Mar 28, 2015 at 01:59
had a sunbeam for years, always vacuum my sausages fresh, i never 'sucked the guts out'.
admittedly, the sausages are very friendly in the bag, but this also ensures there is none or very little air left.
i don't like vacuum packing frozen food, it seems to leave pockets of air, whereas fresh food is given a bit of a squeeze.



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Reply By: get outmore - Saturday, Mar 28, 2015 at 09:32

Saturday, Mar 28, 2015 at 09:32
you normally wouldnt freeze cryovacced food although it can be handy as it will prevent physical spoilage of meat frozen for very long periods (freezer burn)
frozen vaccume packed meat especially if left in primal form has a indefinite lifespan as its protected from physical spoilage (vaccume packing) and bacterial spoilage (freezing) and potentially can last for decades
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Reply By: Member - John and Val - Saturday, Mar 28, 2015 at 09:51

Saturday, Mar 28, 2015 at 09:51
After we have vacuum packed out meat we then pack it into a plastic dish with a good lid. Then the whole lot goes into the freezer. We then pack the frozen meat still in its plastic box in the bottom of our 12V fridge. We learnt early on that if the meat was not frozen but stored at the bottom of the fridge the weight of food above it could pop the vacuum seal open, allowing the meat to spoil (especially if travelling over corrugations). Packing it in a plastic box protects against that. If you freeze the meat before packing into the plastic box you waste space as its more likely to be irregularly shaped.

I agree with those who question freezing of vacuum packed meat - its not necessary if you are going to use it with say a month (or less if its not red meat). However, freezing simply adds another layer of protection, and does not damage the meat. Provided you have an electrical set-up that allows you to run a 12V fridge as a freezer there is no reason not to do so.

Cheers,

Val.
J and V
"Not everything that can be counted counts, and not everything that counts can be counted."
- Albert Einstein

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