Friday, October 10, 2008

Bloody Chicken Hypothesis

If you have ever cooked a chicken well-done only to discover that is was bloody enough to send you hurling, I mean, hurtling towards the nearest spitoon. Here is an entirely plausible explanation for why it is probably not you fault.



MessyONE said...

And this is why we buy farm raised organic chickens.

Also there's that whole chlorine bath thing with the commercial chickens. Yuck and double yuck.

Kate in the NW said...

Damnedy damn-damn-damn.
Does the happen with the PC chicken too, or just the Frankenchicken?

I went out and bought an expensive oven thermometer because I've had so many freakin' chickens (and Thanksgiving turkeys) demonstrate just this phenomenon. I cook 'em the right amount of time and they're more bloody than a Gordon Ramsay dialogue. Then I cook 'em until they're pale at the joints, and they're like $7/lb. sawdust. VERY disappointing!

Is there any way for a home cook to know when the meat is safe and when it's not? My impression is that meat thermometers don't give an accurate reading right at the bone, so how's a gal to know?

Bob del Grosso said...

If you rune the shaft of the thermometer along the bone the reading should be accurate. That said, I don't think that any part of the chicken cooked to 165 degrees should be unsafe to eat. If it's 165 and bloody in appearance it might be gross but it should not have any pathogens.

ntsc said...

I discovered this through simple trial and error.

It is good to have an objective analysis giving why it is still bloody at a temperature of 165F+.

Nancy Heller said...

Does "kashering" the chicken (salting and soaking, or brining) reduce or eliminate this problem?

Ulla said...

We have eggs chicken but we eat the young cockerels. We have bloody thighs bone too but I think it has to do with that we do not butcher them in cones. We do not drain them long enough maybe. I have never seen chicken that bloody though(esp. store bought chicken). Where is it from?

Bob del Grosso said...


No, Kashering does not help. I pre-salt almost all of my chickens and it has never made a difference that I am aware of. When you "Kasher" (rub salt over the chicken and let it site for hours before cooking) unless you bury the chicken in salt and let it sit for days there will never occur the migration of "blood" from the bones.

Brining might do it, but I doubt it.

I think the author of the article studied mass market, battery raised chickens (I've seen this phenomenon many times in these).

Bob del Grosso said...

Kate in the NW

I've only seen this in mass market chickens. But I'll bet it can occur in putatively PC chickens too -provided they are raised in a way that causes them to grow as quickly.