"Discover Cooking, Discuss Life."

Go Back   Discuss Cooking - Cooking Forums > General Cooking Information > Cooking Resources > Food and Kitchen Safety
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 02-21-2009, 11:19 AM   #11
Head Chef
 
mcnerd's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Southern California
Posts: 1,326
I would assume that many previous models of slow cookers only heated from the bottom and would therefore have cold spots that might cause a problem with chicken not heating up quick enough. I don't see that issue with today's slow cookers and I would laugh at anybody that said a RIVAL Crock-Pot did not heat up enough.

I'm very sensitive and involved with the issues of canning foods and spoilage, but I am more comfortable with using a slow cooker with a frozen bird than I am defrosting it in water and all the subsequent handling of it.

Yes, the USDA recommendation is important and should be considered, but in this case I will risk it.
__________________

__________________
Support bacteria. It's the only culture some people have.
mcnerd is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-21-2009, 12:49 PM   #12
Executive Chef
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Mooresville, NC
Posts: 3,102
Hi mcnerd ~ my mother's crock from the 70s heated on all sides then she got on with a stone insert and it heated all around so I don't know where the information in that report could have come from. It certainly confuses me.
__________________

__________________
Callisto in NC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-21-2009, 03:24 PM   #13
Senior Cook
 
mozart's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: SW Florida
Posts: 420
Quote:
Originally Posted by Callisto in NC View Post
I've cooked frozen chicken in a crock pot for over 25 years. Sorry but there are certain things I think they tell us because they "think" something might-possibly-maybe-in-one-in-a-million cookings might make someone who's really sensitive sick. I just don't buy it. I'll take life long experience over a short term study.
Well there is some truth in that. Most regulations have some level of safety factor built in. And the probability of having the staph organism present and enough toxin produced is not large. But it has nothing to do with short term studies. The potential does exist and it is real even if you decide not to consider it in your own kitchen. In a food service establishment, safe food handling practices are more important because so many more people come in contact with the food both before it is cooked and after. The more people involved, the greater the likelihood of a problem.

And believe me, if the toxin is present in sufficient amount, everyone will get sick who eats the food.
__________________
mozart is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-21-2009, 03:43 PM   #14
Senior Cook
 
mozart's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: SW Florida
Posts: 420
Quote:
Originally Posted by mcnerd View Post
I would assume that many previous models of slow cookers only heated from the bottom and would therefore have cold spots that might cause a problem with chicken not heating up quick enough. I don't see that issue with today's slow cookers and I would laugh at anybody that said a RIVAL Crock-Pot did not heat up enough.

I'm very sensitive and involved with the issues of canning foods and spoilage, but I am more comfortable with using a slow cooker with a frozen bird than I am defrosting it in water and all the subsequent handling of it.

Yes, the USDA recommendation is important and should be considered, but in this case I will risk it.
It is not about the crock pot, it is about the chicken. Even in a crock pot that heats like a dutch oven, the bird itself has different thicknesses and different densities. Generally when we cook meat, we are cooking a single muscle. With whole birds, we are cooking white meat, dark meat and wings all at the same time.

The simple point is that a frozen bird will not react the same way to heating up that a thawed bird that is essentially all at 35-40 degrees will. The bird can sit at the area between 40 and 140 far longer. This is what the studies have found and this is the reason for the caution.

If you put a frozen bird in a 350 degree oven, it may take 3 hours to get fully cooked. No problem, that is under four. Put it in a Crockpot on low (as you originally said) and you are cooking at around 200 degrees, no matter how well the heat is distributed. If it takes 10-12 hours to be "done" at 180 degrees, how long will it take to reach 140 degrees?

The reason problems are rare, is because all pathogenic bacteria will eventually be killed at 180 degrees and spores will not be a problem if properly cooled and handled afterwords.

The only real risk is staph toxin, which is heat stable.

It is the job of the USDA to caution about this type of potential even if the actual occurrence is not that common.

We all have to decide for ourselves if we are willing to take the chances with our own families that we don't want the restaurants taking when we eat out.
__________________
mozart is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-21-2009, 05:20 PM   #15
Sous Chef
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 605
Why take such a chance? If you've ever had food poisoning, you would take all recommended precautions to avoid it.
__________________
suzyQ3 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-21-2009, 05:37 PM   #16
Executive Chef
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Mooresville, NC
Posts: 3,102
Quote:
Originally Posted by suzyQ3 View Post
Why take such a chance? If you've ever had food poisoning, you would take all recommended precautions to avoid it.
I've had food poisening but not from my own kitchen. I know how to cook and what to look/smell for. The OP's chicken has no issue. Cooking frozen chicken has never given me a problem. Certain agencies go over the top but it's not necessarily right for home cooks and how we prepare food. I will not stop cooking frozen chicken.
__________________
Callisto in NC is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-21-2009, 05:42 PM   #17
Sous Chef
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 605
Quote:
Originally Posted by Callisto in NC View Post
I've had food poisening but not from my own kitchen. I know how to cook and what to look/smell for. The OP's chicken has no issue. Cooking frozen chicken has never given me a problem. Certain agencies go over the top but it's not necessarily right for home cooks and how we prepare food. I will not stop cooking frozen chicken.
Was someone suggesting that you stop? Obviously it's a personal choice when it's your personal kitchen.

I am suggesting that a credible study trumps anecdotal evidence. I am suggesting that just because a person has avoided any problems doesn't necessarily mean the action is without any possible adverse consequences. And I am suggesting that since this is a site about cooking and food, we should be very careful about what we advocate.
__________________
suzyQ3 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-21-2009, 05:45 PM   #18
Head Chef
 
Scotch's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: California
Posts: 1,042
Quote:
Originally Posted by Callisto in NC View Post
I've had food poisening but not from my own kitchen. I know how to cook and what to look/smell for....
That sort of urban myth is a recipe for disaster. Botulism toxin, for example, is invisible, has no taste or odor, and is potentially deadly.

It's one thing to take risks knowingly yourself, but quite another to expose family and friends to illness or even death simply because it's never happened before. Suggesting that others ignore government and industry warnings because they're "over the top" is irresponsible.
__________________
Scotch is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-21-2009, 05:46 PM   #19
Chief Eating Officer
 
GB's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: USA,Massachusetts
Posts: 25,509
Something else to keep in mind is that you can not know on your own that you have never given yourself food poisoning. Symptoms can vary greatly and can happen 3 days after you have eaten the food in question. You could get a headache 3 days after eating something and that could be a form of food poisoning. Only a doctor doing a blood test would be able to tell you for sure.
__________________
You know you can't resist clicking
this link. Your eyes will thank you. VISUAL BLISS
GB is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 02-21-2009, 05:49 PM   #20
Executive Chef
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Mooresville, NC
Posts: 3,102
Quote:
Originally Posted by suzyQ3 View Post
Was someone suggesting that you stop? Obviously it's a personal choice when it's your personal kitchen.

I am suggesting that a credible study trumps anecdotal evidence. I am suggesting that just because a person has avoided any problems doesn't necessarily mean the action is without any possible adverse consequences. And I am suggesting that since this is a site about cooking and food, we should be very careful about what we advocate.
We'll just have to agree to disagree because I have never heard any person who has cooked a frozen chicken having problems. "Studies" are paid for by someone. Our grandmothers, mothers, and other family weren't paid by anyone and their "anecdotal evidence" is not just anecdotal, it's also real life. These "studies" are not in real kitchens in real environments. Suggesting we disagree with "studies" isn't irresponsible, it's experience. I'm pretty sure people know when any of us say "in my experience" they know we aren't certified overpaid experts and just home cooks who have always had great experience with our methods. I will never stop advocating taking these studies with a grain of salt and trusting yourself. Just not my style.

And, again, the OP's chicken is perfectly fine to use. If you buy chicken before the sell date, freeze it, thaw it in the fridge, it is perfectly acceptable to use. There is no doubt in my mind or even in the "studies."
__________________

__________________
Callisto in NC is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



» Discuss Cooking on Facebook

Our Communities

Our communities encompass many different hobbies and interests, but each one is built on friendly, intelligent membership.

» More about our Communities

Automotive Communities

Our Automotive communities encompass many different makes and models. From U.S. domestics to European Saloons.

» More about our Automotive Communities

Marine Communities

Our Marine websites focus on Cruising and Sailing Vessels, including forums and the largest cruising Wiki project on the web today.

» More about our Marine Communities


Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 04:51 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2016, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.