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milkweed
04-03-2013, 11:20 PM
USDA says that putrid meat is still edible. So how putrid is too putrid, for meat, and how would one make it edible? There's no refridgeration in my SF/F story.

I know about smoking and salting meats, etc., for preservation but this would be akin to finding road kill and not wanting to pass up an opportunity.

Fenika
04-03-2013, 11:42 PM
Where does Usda say that? There are laws for throwing away certain foul meat at inspection.

Eatting rotten road kill depends on a variety of factors. I know deer hunters who leave gutted, unskinned carcasses hanging for a day or two with temps well above 40. Good handling also prevents the spread of bacteria. Cooking in stews can help.

Also, pathogenic e coli is a fairly new thing that resulted from the emergence of new strains. Other bacteria may die easily when cooked or not overwhelm the GI and immune system. So you can have any reasonable outcome you like (mildly upset stomach to violently ill) from meat that is just starting to smell bad but is well handled and cooked.

milkweed
04-04-2013, 12:54 AM
Where does Usda say that? There are laws for throwing away certain foul meat at inspection.

I'm looking online for that now.

King Neptune
04-04-2013, 01:46 AM
It is possible and safe to eat meat that is starting to rot. How putrid is too putrid is largely a matter of personal and cultural preference. If I were a scavenger looking for things that I might choke down, then I would scare off the lions if their kill still had a fair texture, some firmness, rather than soft and runny. Aged beef is favored, and freshly killed meat has a slightly different smell and texture.

Then there is the sauce from rotting fish, garum to the Romans, also known as Vietnamese fish sauce. It is the liquid that makes puddles around piles of rotting fish, fish entails, and similar. I have never had it, but it is said to be delicious.

Then there's all that spoiled milk that I eat as cheese.

How putrid is too putrid?
If you can choke it down and it doesn't make you sick, then it is not too putrid.

milkweed
04-04-2013, 01:54 AM
It is possible and safe to eat meat that is starting to rot. How putrid is too putrid is largely a matter of personal and cultural preference. If I were a scavenger looking for things that I might choke down, then I would scare off the lions if their kill still had a fair texture, some firmness, rather than soft and runny. Aged beef is favored, and freshly killed meat has a slightly different smell and texture.

Then there is the sauce from rotting fish, garum to the Romans, also known as Vietnamese fish sauce. It is the liquid that makes puddles around piles of rotting fish, fish entails, and similar. I have never had it, but it is said to be delicious.

Then there's all that spoiled milk that I eat as cheese.

How putrid is too putrid?
If you can choke it down and it doesn't make you sick, then it is not too putrid.

I forgot about cheese, oh and don't forget the sauerkraut! Excellent points, I will see how I can work this in my scene.

Maryn
04-04-2013, 01:56 AM
Didn't anybody else read "Almost Adam"? In it, a modern man is forced to rely on what amounts to the earliest homo sapiens to survive, and they eat rotting meat fairly often, chasing away the predators who brought it down or the scavengers it's left to. There's still nutritional value in it, if you can keep it down.

I would think that one might do well, in the absence of refrigeration, to make a long-cooking stew or soup which can kill bacteria. If you happen to cook insects or their larvae, hey, more protein!

Maryn, who's going to look over the meat at dinner very carefully

milkweed
04-04-2013, 02:00 AM
Maryn, who's going to look over the meat at dinner very carefully


In reading the USDA website for meat grades I now view hamburger completely differently than I used to, to the point I'm thinking of grinding my own from here on out!

Fenika
04-04-2013, 02:02 AM
Feel free to watch a video on processing hot dogs :evil:

melindamusil
04-04-2013, 02:19 AM
Feel free to watch a video on processing hot dogs :evil:

Or a video on how they make chicken nuggets. That made me swear off processed chicken meat. :gag:

You can also look up Kimchi, a fermented cabbage dish from Korea. The vegetables and sauce are buried in jars and allowed to ferment for months or years.

ECathers
04-04-2013, 03:21 AM
And "thousand year old eggs".

King Neptune
04-04-2013, 03:53 AM
Then there was the time when I decided that the ground beef wasn't to far gone, yet. I cooked it well and ate it with no ill effects, except that I picked up some decay bacteria that liked my guts, and there was a faint smell of dog shit around me for weeks.

One kind of bacteria that can cause spoilage that fights the dangerous stuff is acidophilus bacteria, as in yogurt. There was an article (Scientific American) about how it attacked meat that was kept in near freezing water, as was done by prehistoric humans for preservation. The author of the article reported having eaten some such meat and he found it edible.

Canotila
04-04-2013, 06:30 AM
Then there was the time when I decided that the ground beef wasn't to far gone, yet. I cooked it well and ate it with no ill effects, except that I picked up some decay bacteria that liked my guts, and there was a faint smell of dog shit around me for weeks.

One kind of rotten food that fights the dangerous stuff is acidophilus bacteria, as in yogurt. There was an article (Scientific American) about how it attacked meat that was kept in near freezing water, as was done by prehistoric humans for preservation. The author of the article reported having eates some such meat and he found it edible.

Kumiss is pretty incredible too. Take a goat hide with the hair on and make a watertight sack with the hair on the inside. Then fill it with mare's milk. Let it ferment (make sure to punch it periodically so it doesn't blow up or something). Continue adding fresh mare's milk on a regular basis for years and NEVER clean it out or empty the old stuff.

Kazakhs have used it as a staple food for thousands of years.

Lucy O
04-04-2013, 06:46 AM
I know people who hang game birds at 40-50-degrees for about 2 weeks and eat them happily. I wouldn't. They definitely smell "high."

Supposedly French cooking came about to hide the taste of rancid meat. (Or that might have just been a rumor my Francophobe relatives started.) So lots of garlic and spices might help.

Oh, there's an Icelandic rotten shark that is a delicacy. Probably some kind of fermentation has to accompany the rot for very old meat to be useful/palatable/non-lethal/preserved.

King Neptune
04-04-2013, 04:45 PM
Kumiss is pretty incredible too. Take a goat hide with the hair on and make a watertight sack with the hair on the inside. Then fill it with mare's milk. Let it ferment (make sure to punch it periodically so it doesn't blow up or something). Continue adding fresh mare's milk on a regular basis for years and NEVER clean it out or empty the old stuff.

Kazakhs have used it as a staple food for thousands of years.

If I knew anyone who raised horses, then I would try that. I was thinking about kumiss one day and looked around for the milk of other species, but it turned out that mare's mailk is the bes. Rabbit milk would work, but it would be difficult to get enough. Cow's milk will work, if you add enough sugar, but it doesn't have enough sugar by itself. I would like to find more information about kumiss.

ECathers
04-04-2013, 04:50 PM
If I knew anyone who raised horses, then I would try that. I was thinking about kumiss one day and looked around for the milk of other species, but it turned out that mare's mailk is the bes. Rabbit milk would work, but it would be difficult to get enough. Cow's milk will work, if you add enough sugar, but it doesn't have enough sugar by itself. I would like to find more information about kumiss.

Yak milk might work. Not sure about sugar content, but it is extremely high in butterfat.

And yes, you CAN get yak milk. We had yaks in CO. (Sadly we had to move back to FL because of family situations) Anyhow there were several yak ranches out there and some did milk their yaks.

ETA: Oh forgot to mention this one. Had a friend who used to eat roadkill. Yes I'm serious. (And I avoided eating at her house unless she was cooking vegetarian that day.) She used to use what she called "the Poke test." She'd poke the corpse and if the flesh didn't spring back she figured it wasn't safe to eat.

Maryn
04-04-2013, 05:00 PM
Reminds me of various Carl Hiaasen novels...

Maryn, thinking that character is over the top

milkweed
04-04-2013, 05:47 PM
Reminds me of various Carl Hiaasen novels...

Maryn, thinking that character is over the top


Never heard of him, will have to check it out.

Thank you everyone for the input, this has been helpful, especially with some hints towards what ancient cultures used to do will do some research.

Xelebes
04-04-2013, 08:48 PM
I forgot about cheese, oh and don't forget the sauerkraut! Excellent points, I will see how I can work this in my scene.

And then there is hakarl, which is rotten greenland shark flesh.

Those crazy Icelanders.

Canotila
04-04-2013, 10:39 PM
If I knew anyone who raised horses, then I would try that. I was thinking about kumiss one day and looked around for the milk of other species, but it turned out that mare's mailk is the bes. Rabbit milk would work, but it would be difficult to get enough. Cow's milk will work, if you add enough sugar, but it doesn't have enough sugar by itself. I would like to find more information about kumiss.

Trying to imagine how many rabbits you'd need to keep to get a glass a day, hmm.

Kumiss is something I really want to try, but have no desire to ever own horses. Yaks are awesome but don't have enough lactose. My friends all claim yak butter tea is revolting too, and they're pretty well traveled and open minded.

King Neptune
04-05-2013, 01:41 AM
Yak milk might work. Not sure about sugar content, but it is extremely high in butterfat.

And yes, you CAN get yak milk. We had yaks in CO. (Sadly we had to move back to FL because of family situations) Anyhow there were several yak ranches out there and some did milk their yaks.

I'll ferment some milk again one of these days. I know someone who raises horses, so I might be able to get enough mare's milk for it to be worth the trouble.


ETA: Oh forgot to mention this one. Had a friend who used to eat roadkill. Yes I'm serious. (And I avoided eating at her house unless she was cooking vegetarian that day.) She used to use what she called "the Poke test." She'd poke the corpse and if the flesh didn't spring back she figured it wasn't safe to eat.

Eating roadkill isn't all that unusual, but most people limit it to deer and other large animals. The poke test makes a lot of sense, but I think that it would be safe for a lot longer.

Rufus Coppertop
04-06-2013, 01:18 PM
There are some threads I just shouldn't read.

:gone:

ShyWriter
04-06-2013, 01:29 PM
There are some threads I just shouldn't read.

:gone:

:D I find this one of the most fascinating threads I have ever stumbled upon in this section :popcorn:

King Neptune
04-06-2013, 06:23 PM
:D I find this one of the most fascinating threads I have ever stumbled upon in this section :popcorn:

Did you get any ideas about what to have for dinner? Roadkill?