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Finally Grinded My Own Meat- Still tastes like Storebought Frozen Old Hamburger Patties

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I brought chuck like people recommended, ground it through a coarse plate.

Mixed the meat together with some salt and pepper. Fried it on the skillet with a sprinkling of seasoning salt each side.

Meat came out well-seasoned but the patty itself still had that "day-old, leftover reheated" hamburger taste to it that you find, for example, in a Mcdonalds or Burger King burger when it goes cold or you forget to eat that day and then reheat in the microwave and consume the next day. Just not the same taste as the hamburger when it is consumed after it is freshly cooked.

I think the culprit may have been the age/freshness of the chuck roast itself. (Which may have been sitting in our deep freezer going on months.)
In your opinion, does the age of the chuck roast affect the final freshness quality of the burger, despite being ground, cooked and consumed all in one day?

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  1. Strangely enough, this is the exact same taste I've gotten in many of the storebought frozen hamburger patties I've bought at the store.

    1. Well at least try fresh

      9 Replies
      1. re: scubadoo97

        That's the thing, though.

        How do you determine freshness of an already pre-packaged meat/roast in a store?
        How do you know you are purchasing the freshest meat and/or meat products possible from your local grocer?

        There are some questionable practices meat department personnel may apply that you are in order to extend their "shelf lives" that I may not be aware of.

        I guess, what I'm really asking is what to look for when buying fresh meat?

        1. re: achilles007

          Try to find the butcher and ask him to give you a fresh roast.Repeat untill you find a butcher you can trust. Better yet, ask the chowhounds in your city for recommendations.

          1. re: achilles007

            I just got a meat grinder attachment for my mixer and I'd love to hear meat grinding ideas from other hounds.

            I'm not sure where you're located but are you able to get to a smaller butcher shop or better yet, a farmers market? It sounds like you want to be able to have a conversation with someone who can tell you exactly how fresh the product is and the farmers market is probably your best bet. You also might want to try grinding something like short ribs along with the chuck and see if the blend changes the flavor.

            Report back as I'd love to hear more about your findings!

            JeremyEG
            HomeCookLocavore.com

            1. re: achilles007

              It doesn't have to be fresh butchered. Meat needs to age.
              You just mentioned you used a chuck that had been frrozen for
              many months

              1. re: scubadoo97

                Well, beef needs to age.

                1. re: eight_inch_pestle

                  That ain't aging

                  1. re: scubadoo97

                    Sorry, scubadoo97, I guess my post wasn't very clear. I should have put an emphasis on the word "beef." My point wasn't that sitting in a freezer is aging, but that aging doesn't benefit all types of meat.

                2. re: scubadoo97

                  Beef needs to age in controlled conditions, not in a freezer.

                  1. re: hala

                    My response just above your post "That ain't aging"

                    ??? I hope I didn't lead one to believe that it ages in the freezer???

            2. I wouldn't blame the process before you try grinding your beef fresh. I wouldn't just use chuck either.

              1. I think the culprit may have been the age/freshness of the chuck roast itself. (Which may have been sitting in our deep freezer going on months.)
                _______________________________________________

                That's sounds like your problem right there.

                1. Yech, sounds like fried freezer burn. Old beef doesn't = aged beef!

                  Plus there are a thousand other reasons for your burgers to have been untasty. Were your patties room temp, was the meat loosely packed, did you press while cooking? You just sound unfocusud, it's kind of hard to answer when your question hardly relates to your tale.

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: chipoltay

                    Yeh. I had a hard time trying to express through the post what my experience was.

                    The hamburger that I cooked tasted old, and had that "leftover" taste that you get when you reheat a fast food cheeseburger in the microwave from the day before.

                    I was trying to find out where that "old leftover taste" could possibly be stemming from.

                    I related my experience to storebought frozen patties because they too also carry this same taste.

                    I thought this was strange because while both mine & the storebought patties share the same "leftover" taste, the typical restaurant or fast food burger (which is my point of reference for comparison) doesn't share this taste until HOURS after it has already been cooked and gone cold.
                    Which is In stark contrast to both mine and storebought patties, which have this "leftover" taste STRAIGHT OFF the grill.

                    I wanted to figure out why this was.

                    I am wondering and questioning if the "older" the meat is that you grind it from, does it result in an "old" tasting burger? Which would make sense as the meat I grinded from had been sitting in my deep freezer for a while and the storebought pre-ground patties I had in the past also are known for sit around in the freezer sections of the store for a while, and deteriorate quickly due to them being pre-ground before purchase. This and the fat ratio (which should have been fine because I was using chuck) are perhaps the only 2 culprits I can think of.

                    I will have to try again with fresher meat. And if that doesnt work, I'll pick up some cheap fatty bacon and heighten the fat ratio and see if that fixes it.

                    1. re: achilles007

                      While bacon will increase the fat content it will change the flavor. Maybe in a good way but not a typical burger which is what you are trying to achieve. I would suggest trying a mixture of different cuts. Seems like everyone has their own blend they like. I typically just use chuck but will blend in sirloin, short ribs and even flat iron.

                      1. re: achilles007

                        How was it wrapped in the freezer? I think that is the problem. You took meat that was in the freezer for months, ground it, made patties, that tasted like they had been in the freezer for months. But, of course they would. Grinding meat is not going to change that.
                        Simple.
                        Get a fresh roast, try that and you will have different results.

                    2. I've always thought the main advantage of grinding your own meat is that it enables you to make your own "mixture" of different cuts...

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: kellithina

                        Absolutely. Chuck is most popular due its fat to lean ratio

                      2. It may be the chuck, but it's important to not pre-season or mix the meat. Just form them gently into patties, and salt only as it's going on the grill/griddle.

                        1. Yeah, as others have said, there are a few different things going on here. The basic answer is that using meat that has been frozen "going on months" can absolutely produce an inferior burger, as the meat may well have lost much of its ability to retain moisture. How much ability it has lost depends on the initial quality of the meat itself, the temperature of your freezer, how long it's been frozen, and how well it is wrapped.

                          While there are a handful of issues to contemplate when making your own burger, frankly they're of secondary importance considering your stated problem. Regardless of whether you pre-salt or not or whether you use just chuck or a mixture of cuts, you should have no trouble making a burger that tastes *infinitely* better than a day-old Big Mac reheated in the microwave.

                          As to "freshness," I'd strongly recommend going to a good butcher shop, which should be selling beef that's been aged for at least a little while. If you must go to a supermarket, just snag the best-looking roast you can find with a reasonably distant sell-by date and you should be fine.

                          1. NEVER EVER MIX WITH SALT. Never. Really, never do it.

                            Salt instantly reacts with the meat proteins and causes them to bind together. This is one of the reasons why meatloaf has that meatloaf texture. If you do it to a patty, in just a few minutes the patty will become much denser.

                            You should loosely form a patty and let it rest to warm up to room temp. Get the pan to temp. Salt and pepper the surface of the patty. Griddle it. never press it. Turn it once. Eat that mother.