Chicken Broth Problem? Or Not?

Discussion in 'Professional Chefs' started by raibeaux, May 2, 2013.

  1. raibeaux

    raibeaux

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    Two gallons of chicken broth was made today.  Turned out very, very good, the best I've ever come up with.

    I had to leave the store, and the broth was left out at room temperature for several hours without going to an ice bath.  I just had them put it in the walk-in cooler when I got back.

    What is your opinion.  Do I need to re-boil for a few minutes tomorrow, use as is, or do you think it should be discarded.

    There is no off taste or smell.  It was probably on the table for around six hours, and at room temp when placed in the walk-in.

    Actually, no way I'm throwing it out, I'll use it for personal use first.  The stuff was good!

    Thanks for your opinions.

    Ray
     
  2. pollopicu

    pollopicu

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    I honestly think it depends on how cool the room was in which you left it out. I don't know what the climate is right now in Arkansas, but I'm in CT where its still pretty cool, so if I accidentally left a chix broth out, I would judge the save by how cool the room was when I left it out. Now if I were in the Carribean I would dump it right away. I'm a FREAK when it comes to stuff like that, but I don't think 6 hours killed your broth. I wouldn't make a habit of it, but again, I think it could be saved if it was left out in a nicely cool room.

    I make my own stocks, and I have had my husband forget to put it in the fridge for me, but we keep our house in the upper 50's. That's how I have judged it.
     
  3. raibeaux

    raibeaux

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    Probably around 70-72 degrees.
     
  4. pollopicu

    pollopicu

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    If its for customers and you're in doubt, throw it out. I hate throwing stuff out that I know came out super special, but it's better to be safe than sorry.
     
  5. wvman2374

    wvman2374

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    I don't think you have an issue of it going bad in that amount of time.  The issue is bacteria growth.  So it could taste great, but it could also get you and your customers sick.

    Given what you've said, serving it would be a critical violation, per the 2009 FDA food code (and earlier ones as well);  you have 2 hours to get it to 70f and a total of 6 hours to get it to 41f.  Clearly that wasn't done here.  

    I wouldn't serve it to customers, but if its that good I'd probably risk it and eat it myself.  (To be honest, I don't consider it a big risk given that it was just a few hours, but its still a genuine risk.)  I'd bring it to a boil first though just to minimize the risk.
     
  6. flipflopgirl

    flipflopgirl

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    Some bacteria produce a toxin that no amount of heating will get rid of.

    I once brought a piece of chicken home from a family BBQ.

    Wrapped it in foil and re-heated in the oven.

    Was so ill I had to visit the ER.

    When in doubt throw it out.

    mimi
     
  7. someday

    someday

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    Most likely it is fine, but health food guidelines dictate you toss it. 

    The long boiling process would have sterilized and killed any bacteria in the broth, but there is a chance for re-contamination while it sat on the counter. 

    If it were at my house, I probably would have just brought it back up to the boil for a few minutes, then chilled and stored it properly at that point. As this happened in a prof. kitchen and would be served to guests, I can't recommend it. I would toss it. 
     
  8. geequew

    geequew

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    U should've reboiled it then cooled it properly if it was out for only a couple of hours do u have a blast chiller
     
  9. geequew

    geequew

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    When reusing any protein based stock or sauce u must reboil the following day
     
  10. ed buchanan

    ed buchanan

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    When in doubt, throw it out   a gallon or so of stock cost a lot less then a law suit for food poisoning.. You use it for yourself. 6 hours is 100 % over recommended time of  4 hours.
     
  11. davehriver

    davehriver

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    Bring it back to a boil and it will kill anything nasty and then if it is still awesome use it.
     
  12. someday

    someday

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    The problem with this is that, yes it will kill any bacteria that have grown in the broth, but it won't do anything to get rid of the toxins that may be left behind from said bacteria. 

    I agree that it is most likely OK to use, and again, if it were my own personal stock at my house I would have no problem using it. But in the professional kitchen, we must adhere to strict (and yes, sometimes overly strict) guidelines to ensure that we don't get people sick. 

    The number one priority of ANY professional kitchen should be to serve safe food. Safe food is above everything else. And like ED said, the cost and time of stock is a lot less than a lawsuit of medical bills if you get one, or more, people ill. 
     
  13. geequew

    geequew

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    You have up to four hours before discarding if you are under that time reboil then cool properly
     
  14. geequew

    geequew

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    How long have u been working professionally?? Are u still in cooking school
     
  15. twyst

    twyst

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    I actually staged for a VERY famous chef in France who would put a chicken stock on at night, then cover it with plastic wrap, turn off the  burner and leave out to steep overnight.   The AM crew would reboil the broth in the morning and then cool the stock and store it.   Always freaked me out.
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2013
  16. michaelga

    michaelga

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    Nice story - no facts involved though.

    Please - when did he leave and what temperature was the stock?

    What time did the morning crew arrive and what temperature was the stock?

    I'm not saying that all VERY famous chef's are infallable but i've seen practices very close to what you describe that fit just fine into the accepted norm.   

    Was it sitting above the pilot light?  I've also seen continental chefs use that trick too... a small amount of heat applied to a large pot will keep it at 'accepted' temps for a long time.

    ----

    To the OP you have to be honest with your circumstances and situation and then decide what to do.   

    Most food handling rules are quite reasonable - however -  that said some aren't.

    So it's up to you.

    Just make sure it's a decision based upon your hard and fast "knowledge" and not what someone else thinks, as they can't be responsible for 'thinking' ....
     
  17. twyst

    twyst

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    It would sit completely off the heat from about midnight to about 8 AM.   No pilot, and the stock was definitely room temperature when the AM crew would arrive.  I was only a couple of years out of culinary school and quite honestly it really freaked me out.   He's been doing it for years and years and has restaurants all over the world, so there must be some method to the madness.    Im guessing the fact that its covered in plastic wrap while still sterile and hot keeps the bacteria at bay long enough to make this practice "safe".   Food safety laws are also quite a bit more relaxed outside the US on some things.    I'm in no way advocating this practice, I just thought it was a rather weird practice.
     
  18. meezenplaz

    meezenplaz

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    I worked with an established celebrity chef, who did the same thing...
    He used the pilot trick. Full stockpot, 24 hours til he came the next afternoon.
    Didn't freak me out but I didn't exactly agree with it either.
     
  19. someday

    someday

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    Well, the odds are, again, that it would be fine. Michael Ruhlman has even said that it is OK to keep stock on your stove, all the time, as long as you bring it to a boil once or twice a day.

    What did people do for hundreds/thousands of years without refrigeration? The health guidelines are really conservative, and again, the odds are that nothing much would happen to the stock in any of the above situations. But, that doesn't mean that we, as professionals, shouldn't hold ourselves to the highest standard of food safety. 
     
  20. michaelga

    michaelga

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    Actually he retracted that and even got H. McGee involved as he used to do a similar process.

    http://ruhlman.com/2011/08/stock-clarifications/