Meat scientist Dr. Chris Calkins on Meateater

IdahoPotato

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Very happy to finally see a crossover of the field of meat science and hunting in the mainstream media. Dr. Calkins is a leader in his field and I think he nailed this podcast. There is so much lore or hearsay surrounding meat quality for whatever reason, and it is especially magnified in the hunting world. I'm a geneticist in the beef industry and have some exposure to tenderness research as well. One thing I might add that was not explained very clearly is the genetic variation that exists within a cohort of animals of the same age and relative environment. There can be significant differences in tenderness among individual animals simply due to genetics - just like height or skin color or any other trait. Getting a tough animal could just be a roll of the dice and nothing you actually did to the meat during handling. Maybe one of those "nerd alert" topics, but I think Steve and the crew did a great job making this appealing to the everyday hunter.
 

huntnpack

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It was long overdue. Enjoyed it quite a bit. Wish he would have been able to explain stearic acid content in cervids and explain oxidative rancidity a bit more, but that podcast is worth a couple listens for anyone interested in meat quality.
 

IdahoPotato

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I need to get caught up on the MeatEater podcast, that episode sounds like a very interesting one.
Its definitely worth the time. Meateater has been getting some criticism as a whole lately, but the quality and relevance of the people they talk to on the podcast is excellent. I'm glad its not just a parade of their friends and equipment associates.
 

WyoDoug

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I thought this to be valuable information. I hunt antelope during August when heat is sometimes in the 90s still. I prefer to quarter and get it on ice as soon as I can to prevent spoilage. But where I can, I also like to get it in a cool garage where the temp is less than 70 or so and age it a few days, then butcher it. I did debone in the field, but after listening to this podcast, I need to rethink that. A lot of good information in this podcast.
 

Nambaster

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I agree with all the input regarding the podcast. My take away is to not bone out elk anymore.
 

np307

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I hated towards the end that nobody knew that black pepper isnt a remedy for bacteria, it's for flies or other bugs. That's why its traditionally rubbed on hams or other pork that's hung to cure. Thats obviously just a minor thing though. Otherwise the episode was very interesting.
 

Jbotto

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I’m all caught up of the Meateater Podcast except for this week. Sounds like this will be a great episode. Looking forward to it after reading all these previews!
 

IdahoPotato

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I thought this to be valuable information. I hunt antelope during August when heat is sometimes in the 90s still. I prefer to quarter and get it on ice as soon as I can to prevent spoilage. But where I can, I also like to get it in a cool garage where the temp is less than 70 or so and age it a few days, then butcher it. I did debone in the field, but after listening to this podcast, I need to rethink that. A lot of good information in this podcast.
Yep I think I'm also going to avoid de-boning if at all possible in the future. Creating that sectioned up meat ball in a game bag slows cooling and sounds like it just promotes faster bacterial spoilage and oxidation with more of the surface area exposed to air. Obviously there are situations with elk in the mountains where you just need to get meat out as fast and light as possible.

They mentioned 34-35 degrees is the optimal aging temp, but I think you can obviously get away with warmer temps if you leave the hide on or just want to age whole quarters with the protective outer connective tissue layer still intact. For me personally I get nervous leaving meat hanging in the garage or outside if it's over 45. I would rather get it packaged and put away too soon rather than mess with the bacteria that develops when temps get too warm. Growing up I remember leaving deer hanging up in camp when it was definitely over 70 some days in the afternoon, I think you can get away with a lot if the situation calls for it.
 

WyoDoug

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Yep I think I'm also going to avoid de-boning if at all possible in the future. Creating that sectioned up meat ball in a game bag slows cooling and sounds like it just promotes faster bacterial spoilage and oxidation with more of the surface area exposed to air. Obviously there are situations with elk in the mountains where you just need to get meat out as fast and light as possible.

They mentioned 34-35 degrees is the optimal aging temp, but I think you can obviously get away with warmer temps if you leave the hide on or just want to age whole quarters with the protective outer connective tissue layer still intact. For me personally I get nervous leaving meat hanging in the garage or outside if it's over 45. I would rather get it packaged and put away too soon rather than mess with the bacteria that develops when temps get too warm. Growing up I remember leaving deer hanging up in camp when it was definitely over 70 some days in the afternoon, I think you can get away with a lot if the situation calls for it.
If your temps are 70 or below during day and around 30s at night, you can safely age meat for a week. I like the 7 day mark when I do dry age. If you have a garage where it can be hung and kept cool, that is a good place to do it. I am leary of antelope mainly in my case because I hunt that in August when temps are around 80-90 still.
 

diamond hitch

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I grew up where meat was hung for 7 days no matter what. I've seen where elk were hung in the apple warehouses in Yakima until covered with green mold.

Going to school in Fargo I was introduced to the meat lab at NDSU. The rules then were beef and buffalo were aged for 14 days at 33F. Wild meat was to be cut when the core was cold ~24hrs. I have doing it ever since. The change in flavor was unbelievable. The only change I have experienced is that in my climate the meat is usually frozen within 24 hrs. If it isn't - we cut. If it is I cut after the season.

It has worked for me for 50 years.
 

ScottP

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Its definitely worth the time. Meateater has been getting some criticism as a whole lately, but the quality and relevance of the people they talk to on the podcast is excellent. I'm glad its not just a parade of their friends and equipment associates.
I actually listened less when it went that direction (gear assoc and friends sitting around). I'm much more interested in these types of informative topics, with guests that know their stuff. Can't wait for the this one....
 
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