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unnecessary  loss  of  nutrients  and  meat  juices,  resulting in a decreased quality of meat. THAWING METHODS Frozen meat may be thawed in several ways. The preferred method is slow thawing because there is less drip  loss  in  the  meat.  Meat  thawed  slowly  yields  a juicier and more palatable cooked product. On small ships  with  limited  chill  space,  or  whenever  time  is limited between meat issue and mealtime, slow thawing is  not  practical.  The  Bureau  of  Medicine  and  Surgery (BUMED)  has  approved  the  use  of  alternate  methods that are recommended for such circumstances. Once meat has been defrosted or thawed, it should be used as soon as possible and not refrozen. Breakouts should not exceed the amount to be served. Preferred  Thawing  Method Break  out  the  quantity  of  meat  required.  Remove  it from the shipping container, but leave the meat inside the  wrappings.  Thaw  slowly  at  temperatures  between 36°F and 38°F until almost completely thawed. The thawing period will vary according to the following conditions: l Size of the meat cut (the larger the size, the longer the time required). . Bone-in or boneless state. Bone-in meat takes less time to thaw. l Air temperature and circulation in chill space. Moving air accelerates thawing. l Quantity of meat being thawed in a given area. A large amount will lower the temperature of the room and decrease the thawing action. Spread the cuts out. Do not stack them. It is almost impossible to predict the exact time required to thaw meat unless there is a perfectly   controlled   set   of   circumstances.   Frozen wholesale  beef  cuts  and  frozen  boneless  beef  may require up to 48 hours to thaw at temperatures of 36°F to  38°F.  Cuts  from  pork,  veal,  and  lamb  will  probably thaw in about 24 hours under refrigerator temperatures. Alternate Thawing Methods If it should become necessary to thaw the frozen meat quickly, one of two methods is used. When it is necessary  to  use  either  alternate  thawing  method discussed next, the medical department representative (MDR)  must  be  notified. 1. Thaw in the original sealed wrapper or container at room temperature (not to exceed 80°F) for several hours. This procedure is to be used  only by small ships when  the  use  of  chill  box  reach-in  refrigerators  is  not available. 2. Thaw in the original unopened container at 50°F or lower in the meat preparation room. This procedure is approved for larger ships that do not have thaw boxes or when the use of chill box reach-in refrigerators is not available. In  each  alternate  method,  the  container  acts  as  a refrigerator and allows the meat to thaw from the outside toward the center of the package. The outside pieces remain  sufficiently  cold  to  prevent  spoilage  while  the center is thawing. Proper  precautions  should  be  taken  to  make  sure potentially  hazardous  foods  are  not  allowed  to  remain at  room  temperature  once  thawed. COOKING  FROZEN  AND  THAWED MEATS Most cuts of meats should be thawed or tempered before  they  are  cooked.  Bulk  ground  beef,  diced  meat, and Swiss steak should be completely thawed before they are cooked. Thawed meats and meats cooked while frozen are prepared  exactly  as  chilled  meats.  The  principle  of using lower temperatures cooking is equally applicable to all meats. Frozen Roasts If cooked in the frozen state, roasts will require approximately one-third to one-half additional cooking time. Seasoning should be delayed until the outside is somewhat thawed and the surface is sufficiently moist to retain salt, pepper, and flour. The insertion of the meat thermometer can be delayed until the roasts are partially thawed. Ground Meats, Diced Meats, and Swiss Steak Ground meats, diced meats, and Swiss steak must be  completely  thawed  before  cooking.  Beef  pattie  mix used for meatballs, meat patties, and meat loaf requires mixing  with  other  ingredients  and  shaping  before cooking. Since diced meats used in stews or other recipes often are dredged in flour and seasonings before browning,  they  must  be  thawed.  Swiss  steak  also requires  thawing  before  cooking. 6-7

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