I already know the answer but I need to hear it..........

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by pignit, Sep 25, 2015.

  1. pignit

    pignit Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I spent 16 hours yesterday preparing and smoking $500 dollars worth of brisket and butt for a BBQ feast on Saturday. Wrapped everything up last night at about 11.... everything cool enough for the fridge. Woke up at 10 this morning and my fridge was working but not very well....... yep.... you guessed it. All the meat is sitting at 80 degrees or so and I'm just waiting to hear it from you all before I throw it out and start over...... 
  2. westby

    westby Smoking Fanatic

    That's terrible!  Was the large thermal mass of warm meat too much for the fridge?  I'd hate to say it, but you already know the right answer.  I would try eating it myself, but I wouldn't want to risk getting everybody else sick.
  3. pignit

    pignit Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I'd say it was... have never done this much at one time and tried to cool it down. Always smoked the day of the BBQ. Was trying to get ahead so I wouldn't have to stay up all night smoking and then party all day. 
  4. mfreel

    mfreel Smoking Fanatic

    I'd eat it.  It's just cooling down and a lot for the fridge to handle.  That's a lot of meat.  It'a all cooked and wrapped, I assume.  No problem!!!!!
  5. pignit

    pignit Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    All cooked and wrapped and was gonna put it back on the smoker on Saturday to heat back up to 160....... I'd eat it too but I don't want to feed 100 people and they get sick. Looks like another trip to the butcher....... 
  6. mummel

    mummel Master of the Pit

    I would eat it too, but I wouldnt give it to guests.  Why dont you test it?  You will get sick in ~4 hours if its off.  If you dont, you're good to go and can give it to guests.  But to each his own.  For $500 worth of meat, I would at least test it. 
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2015
  7. pignit

    pignit Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Problem with that is if I'm sick, it's bad.... and nobody to cook up another mess of pig..... already seasoning 20 more butts..... 

    Thanks for the input.
  8. ristau5741

    ristau5741 Meat Mopper

    There is a saying in the canning world that I think would apply here.

    "if in doubt, throw it out."

    500 bucks is worth the loss compared to the possibility causing substantial medical bills, serious illness, or death to others.
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2015
  9. pignit

    pignit Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Yep... I knew that.... just wanted to hear it out loud.
  10. bmaddox

    bmaddox Master of the Pit

    Even though people try to stretch the limits of the USDA rules I try to stick by them. When it comes to cooked food, they call for it to be refrigerated after being at room temp for 2 hours. Based on your post, I would say your meat stayed at room temp (or close to it) for 10 hours. I would not risk it, but that's just me. I get criticized for being over cautious but the last thing I would want would be to feed a group of people and one of them to have a health issue putting them at a higher risk and for them to get sick. 

    I know it's too late, but in the future you could vac seal everything and drop it in a cooler of ice water for an hour or two before putting it in the fridge. 
  11. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    It is very unlikely it is bad. Sterile, hot meat going into foil, there is no opportunity for contanination short of dirty hand and tools. But " Very Unlikely " is not good enough for Guests...I would make fresh meat for the Party...BUT...I would freeze the other stuff and Cook with it. The higher heat of making Chili, Taco Fillling, etc. will render even the remote risk zero...JJ
    rowsdower likes this.
  12. mummel

    mummel Master of the Pit

    I've left butts overnight just wrapped in the foil lying in my Pyrex dishes.  They have been fine.  I left pizza out last weekend.  No problems.  But I wouldnt do it for 2 nights, or re-refrigerate after spending a night out at 75F.  If it sits on the counter, it better get eaten the next day. 

    So its been 5 hours.  What did you end up doing?
  13. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    With what you describe, there is little risk, less if untouched. But, as in the OP's situation, serving to other folks, this is still not a good idea. My wife is immunocompromised, no Spleen. What might give me and my daughters a little gas, can make her really sick. Short of knowing every persons health status, the best move is to cook fresh meat and handle, refrigerate and reheat using the safe temp standards and the safety precautions used to serve the public in restaurants...JJ
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2015
  14. mummel

    mummel Master of the Pit

    Yeah +1000.  You are correct.  Sorry OP.  Sucks when stuff like this happens. 
  15. vwaldoguy

    vwaldoguy Smoke Blower

    The bigger question, what are you going to do to prevent it happening again with the second batch?
  16. sb59

    sb59 Smoking Fanatic

    After wrapping the second batch I would double or triple bag em in trash bags and float them in ice water to really chill them down before putting in fridge I would also put some frozen gal. milk jugs in the fridge to help it recover faster.
  17. demosthenes9

    demosthenes9 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I'm with JJ on this one.     Freeze and keep for personal use.    In the future, crash cool the meat as SB59 described.
  18. pignit

    pignit Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I've been doing this long enough to know better than to serve this to guests. Hard lesson learned. I personally didn't want to risk eating myself either. May have been fine but I'm not up for experiments with food making me sick. I got up early and smoked the meat the day of the party and everything went fantastic. I put the butts that we didn't pull in a cooler with ice on top and the drain open checking on it occasionally to make sure there was plenty of ice. When it cooled down I put them into the refrigerator. I would definitely do this again but I would use the cooler and ice to make sure I get it down to temp before putting it in the fridge. Thanks for the input..........


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