To Freeze or Not to Freeze...

All other competition related questions or comments about recipes, techniques, and related topics.

Moderator: TBBQF Deputies

jtilk
Outlaw
Posts: 2074
Joined: Fri Jan 08, 2010 10:41 pm
Location: Lake Jackson, TX
Contact:

To Freeze or Not to Freeze...

Postby jtilk » Wed Jan 22, 2014 7:34 pm

I know this question is subjective and there is no right or wrong answer, but I'm curious as to just how many of you comp cooks are ok with buying your meat in advance and freezing... VS how many of you swear by buying it say the wk before the comp and just keeping on ice?
-Josh

Big Green Egg
Pitmaker Vault

"The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants." - Thomas Jefferson
All_Grilla_No_Filla
Cowboy
Posts: 289
Joined: Sat Jan 11, 2014 6:09 pm
Location: McKinney, TX
Contact:

Re: To Freeze or Not to Freeze...

Postby All_Grilla_No_Filla » Wed Jan 22, 2014 7:54 pm

Though I know many who do and do very well with it, I never freeze. I buy mine a day to several in advance, and keep it in my outside dedicated fridge until I leave for the comp. Then I put it over ice and head out. Freezing it might also work fine, but I just believe you want the product as good as it gets, and frozen/thawed in my opinion isn't as good (not meant to translate as: isn't good) as fresh.

Hope that helps...
jtilk
Outlaw
Posts: 2074
Joined: Fri Jan 08, 2010 10:41 pm
Location: Lake Jackson, TX
Contact:

Re: To Freeze or Not to Freeze...

Postby jtilk » Wed Jan 22, 2014 8:26 pm

Like I said just curious as to where everyone stands on this. I used to only buy right before a comp, but as of late I've got to freezing because finding prime or choice around here is not exactly easy. So I buy and freeze when I find it... of course I could buy prime at a place about an hour away if I wanted to pay $4.99/ lb, but I'm opting to get away from this.
-Josh

Big Green Egg
Pitmaker Vault

"The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants." - Thomas Jefferson
User avatar
Ramtuf6
Pilgrim
Posts: 49
Joined: Wed Jun 15, 2011 6:13 pm
Location: San Antonio
Contact:

Re: To Freeze or Not to Freeze...

Postby Ramtuf6 » Wed Jan 22, 2014 8:43 pm

I buy competition meats whenever I find the best cuts (chicken, the right weights) even when I'm not prepping for a competition. So yes, I freeze all my meats. Chicken and ribs I prep first then freeze, brisket I freeze, pull out to age a little, then prep for a competition.
Good food, good friends and good times. The very best bbq, from us to you.

http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Mama-a ... 4784823128
User avatar
TexasPyro
Rustler
Posts: 142
Joined: Mon May 27, 2013 12:57 pm
Contact:

Re: To Freeze or Not to Freeze...

Postby TexasPyro » Wed Jan 22, 2014 8:44 pm

Ive been playing with this in my head for some time. Last year I had been buying meat a day or two in advance and getting decent results, a couple of months ago I bought a case of brisket and froze it, I don't know if my mind is playing tricks on me or not, but the meat seems to cook better and be much more tender. Ribs on the other hand, myself and several others seem to know when I freeze them, they seem to be a bit more dry. Chickens, Ive seen no difference one way or the other.
RLTXBBQ
Pilgrim
Posts: 42
Joined: Thu Jun 06, 2013 7:40 am
Location: Heart O Tx
Contact:

Re: To Freeze or Not to Freeze...

Postby RLTXBBQ » Wed Jan 22, 2014 9:47 pm

Ramtuf6 wrote:I buy competition meats whenever I find the best cuts (chicken, the right weights) even when I'm not prepping for a competition. So yes, I freeze all my meats. Chicken and ribs I prep first then freeze, brisket I freeze, pull out to age a little, then prep for a competition.


CJ what do you mean by "prep first" on chicken and ribs? Wouldnt it be better to leave them in the factory cryo? Do you splt your birds then vaccum seal again? Thats what I do and just thaw starting sunday or minday the week of the cook off.
User avatar
Swamp Donkeyz BBQ
Outlaw
Posts: 1779
Joined: Tue Oct 16, 2012 2:26 pm
Location: Huntsville, Tx
Contact:

Re: To Freeze or Not to Freeze...

Postby Swamp Donkeyz BBQ » Wed Jan 22, 2014 9:49 pm

I cook previously frozen briskets, at comps, regularly. I pull them out of the freezer a week and a half to two weeks before the comp and let them thaw, slowly, in the fridge. Sometimes I buy just before a comp, but haven't noticed any difference between fresh or frozen.
User avatar
CypertJ
Bandolero
Posts: 570
Joined: Thu Sep 23, 2010 1:17 pm
Location: Canton, TX
Contact:

Re: To Freeze or Not to Freeze...

Postby CypertJ » Wed Jan 22, 2014 10:04 pm

Depending on where you buy your meat, most of the big names stores thaw out their meat before it goes out to the case so it seems like a fat cap up/down kind of question

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I747 using Tapatalk
User avatar
Ramtuf6
Pilgrim
Posts: 49
Joined: Wed Jun 15, 2011 6:13 pm
Location: San Antonio
Contact:

Re: To Freeze or Not to Freeze...

Postby Ramtuf6 » Wed Jan 22, 2014 10:16 pm

RLTXBBQ wrote:
Ramtuf6 wrote:I buy competition meats whenever I find the best cuts (chicken, the right weights) even when I'm not prepping for a competition. So yes, I freeze all my meats. Chicken and ribs I prep first then freeze, brisket I freeze, pull out to age a little, then prep for a competition.


CJ what do you mean by "prep first" on chicken and ribs? Wouldnt it be better to leave them in the factory cryo? Do you splt your birds then vaccum seal again? Thats what I do and just thaw starting sunday or minday the week of the cook off.


I look for a specific weight range in my birds, sometimes I can only find 1 or 2 other times 3 or 4. I buy them even when not competing. I get them home and prep them (I split mine) vacuum seal and freeze them until I need them. Same thing with ribs. I probably wouldn't feel comfortable if my meats weren't frozen and then thawed. It may be in my head that freezing does something to the meat cells. heck I don't know...lol
Good food, good friends and good times. The very best bbq, from us to you.

http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Mama-a ... 4784823128
All_Grilla_No_Filla
Cowboy
Posts: 289
Joined: Sat Jan 11, 2014 6:09 pm
Location: McKinney, TX
Contact:

Re: To Freeze or Not to Freeze...

Postby All_Grilla_No_Filla » Wed Jan 22, 2014 10:36 pm

CypertJ wrote:Depending on where you buy your meat, most of the big names stores thaw out their meat before it goes out to the case so it seems like a fat cap up/down kind of question

Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I747 using Tapatalk


This is a great point, and the primary reason that I don't like to freeze meat. I can almost be assured that the meat has already been frozen (at least) once and then thawed in-store. So the last thing I want to do is re-freeze. If I buy and use within a couple of days I know that at least there wasn't yet another step in that process. I've had to use ribs that I had frozen in a pinch once, and they were dry and the texture was funny. I'd probably have no issue serving them in the backyard, but I'd never put them in a turn-in box.

My only deviation from this is sometimes I'll get meat that has been flash-frozen and it doesn't seem to affect the texture of the meat as much. I'll then thaw slowly in the fridge for a few days (I believe another poster mentioned that as well, so, nothing groundbreaking here...lol).
jtilk
Outlaw
Posts: 2074
Joined: Fri Jan 08, 2010 10:41 pm
Location: Lake Jackson, TX
Contact:

Re: To Freeze or Not to Freeze...

Postby jtilk » Wed Jan 22, 2014 10:39 pm

Like I said I used to be anti-freezing... but unless I'm buying birds I specifically request to fresh, never frozen and without hormones/ solution, how do I know what that cut has been threw before it hits the shelf?? I've seen plenty of meat sitting on the shelf semi-frozen at the stores, so what does it hurt if I do it myself?? Just my thoughts....
-Josh

Big Green Egg
Pitmaker Vault

"The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants." - Thomas Jefferson
User avatar
bruno994
Cowboy
Posts: 283
Joined: Thu Jan 05, 2012 3:52 pm
Location: Buna, Texas
Contact:

Re: To Freeze or Not to Freeze...

Postby bruno994 » Thu Jan 23, 2014 8:37 am

It all depends...if I come across some nice looking briskets and don't have a comp coming up soon, they'll get frozen (after wet aging for at least 2 to 3 weeks). I buy all my ribs at either the local HEB or Market Basket when they put the St. Louis cut spares on sale for $1.99 a pound. I will buy anywhere from 6 to 10 racks during the sales and unless I'm cooking that weekend,. they get frozen. On my chickens, I don't freeze them, the HEB usually has birds around 5#'s at all times, so I don't worry about stocking those up.
Hale of a Good BBQ...2013-2014 IBCA Third Coast Cooker of the Year...Semi-retired...
User avatar
RWBTEX
Outlaw
Posts: 1157
Joined: Mon Mar 14, 2011 10:55 pm
Contact:

Re: To Freeze or Not to Freeze...

Postby RWBTEX » Thu Jan 23, 2014 3:32 pm

I buy mostly all my meats at heb too and notice often they are mostly frozen thawing out so I take them home and refreeze, have never noticed or had a problem.
SMOKIN' LONESTAR BBQ TEAM
on facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SmokinLonestar/
Hasty Bake Legacy
Pitts and spitts 24x48 stick burner
Napoleon Kettle
Weber bronze kettle
Traeger Pellet Pro 34
PK Grill for steak comps and fajitas at home
and then some
BigDave
Bandolero
Posts: 632
Joined: Sat May 31, 2008 5:02 pm
Location: Allen, TX
Contact:

Re: To Freeze or Not to Freeze...

Postby BigDave » Mon Mar 03, 2014 9:33 am

I know some of the most successful teams get their briskets by the case and freeze. I don't think it matters one bit.

Do to ever increasing costs we now only get 1 brisket for a comp and usually get it 3 to 4 weeks before the contest and wet age it.

But if I could afford a case of prime briskets, you could bet the farm I'd be freezing them! :)

Return to “Competition BBQ Discussion”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest