I was gutted tonight.
I got two beautiful steaks out the freezer, from a whole cow I home butchered last year (the cow wasn't from my land - it's a long story I might tell you about one day - but lets just say I ended up with a lot of beef!).
I let them defrost and thought about the homemade wedges, fresh sweetcorn and fried onions I was going to cook with it.
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Trouble was after I popped the oven on and started to prepare everything else I could smell something not quite right. It wasn't strong, just a little whiff when you held your nose to it.
Freezer burn on my steaks.
I wasn't willing to risk it, time to cook something else.
My wife got in from work and excitedly asked about the beautiful steaks on the counter, only to be told she was having a veggie curry instead!
Now the meat has been in there 18 months and we're getting very near to the end of it, but it's a shame that some has been wasted like this. I hate food waste and I don't want to make these mistakes again.
I frequently butcher animals for our own consumption and have three freezers with meat and veggies in to make sure we are eating as much of our own produce as possible. I tend to separate the meat into different freezers so I know what to use and what each is (at the moment one has mutton and one has lamb, etc).
With 19 chickens to process soon , they're going onto pasture tomorrow hopefully, I want to package them in the best way possible so there won't be anything wasted due to storage. and I'm thinking of something better than just a freezer bag like I've been using.
I was looking at vacuum packers and thought that this might be great way to improve my long term storage, I could use it for packing my chickens before they go in the freezer and for storing my dehydrated fruit and veg. I've also been told it's great for just keeping things in the fridge fresher for longer, then there's the possibility of Souve cooking or marinading meat overnight.
So does anyone out there use a vacuum packer before they freeze meat?
What one would you recommend? And do you use it for anything else?