July 13, 2015 – Fresh meat doesn’t have to be prepared the same day you purchase it. In fact, stocking up on your favorites and storing them in your freezer is a great way to plan ahead. We’re sharing our favorite tips for freezing, defrosting and enjoying fresh meat.
How to Store: If you aren’t planning on using meat for at least a few days, freeze it! Meat lasts safely in the refrigerator for about three days and in the freezer for several months. Before freezing, separate it into serving portions and wrap each portion in plastic wrap. Next, wrap in aluminum foil and seal in a freezer-safe plastic bag. The less exposer your meat has to air, the longer it will last.
How to Defrost: When it comes time to fire up the grill, be sure to plan ahead. Defrosting can take anywhere from a few hours to a few minutes depending on your method:
Refrigerate It: This defrosting method is perfect for the busy planner. If you know which cut you’ll be whipping up for dinner, move meat from the freezer to the fridge before heading out in the morning. It will be defrosted and ready for cooking in just a few hours.
Cold Water: This approach is much faster than refrigerator thawing, but requires a little more work. Put frozen meat in a sealed bag and fully immerse it in cold water. Keep in mind that warm water can cause the outer edges of the meat to heat up and bacteria to form, so make sure you rotate water to ensure it stays cold.
Microwave It: Defrosting meat in the microwave is surely one of the quicker methods. Select the “defrost” setting on your microwave to ensure the me
at doesn’t cook prematurely. Always defrost each individual portion separately because some will be slightly larger than others and will require more time. Once defrosted, your meat will be ready to cook!
How to Enjoy: Put these fresh meat tips to use with some of our favorite Test Kitchen recipes! We love the sweet-tart flavors of Grilled Chicken and Pineapple Skewers with Lemon-Cucumber Salsa, or the tangy kick of Top Sirloin with Balsamic Avocado Salsa.