Questions about LONG-TERM food storage such as canning, pickling, freezing, and drying.

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56
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1answer
16k views

How long can I store a food in the pantry, refrigerator, or freezer?

How do I know if a given food or ingredient I have is still good, or if I should discard it? How can I best preserve a food or ingredient? This broad question is intended as a "general reference" ...
46
votes
10answers
267k views

How dangerous is it to refreeze meat that has been thawed?

I've often been told by people that I shouldn't refreeze meat (particularly hamburger meat) once it has been thawed. However, this seems a little silly to me. I can't imagine how meat that hasn't ...
10
votes
5answers
71k views

What is the ideal fridge temperature

I notice that in both countries where I lived the fridges are kept at 6 or 7 °C (43-45 °F). When it would be colder, people find their drinks to cold, when served straight out of fridge (especially in ...
13
votes
9answers
16k views

Making “long(er)-life” homemade mayonnaise

Most recipes I've seen for mayonnaise suggest that homemade mayo should be kept in the fridge for no longer than between 3 and 5 days. What techniques or ingredients can be used to increase the ...
22
votes
12answers
12k views

Is there anything I can add to homemade bread to preserve it?

I love making our own bread - we rarely buy shop bought, but it tends to go off very quickly. Part of the appeal is that it doesn't have any "junk" in it - artificial preservatives - which I'm sure ...
6
votes
5answers
59k views

How long can you keep chocolate, and what is the best way to store it?

For instance, I have some bars of Valrhona I use for chocolate tarts and pastries, but I haven't been doing the dessert thing in a while. How long does chocolate last before losing flavor (or does ...
8
votes
4answers
842 views

What are the herbs that “dry” the best?

Some fresh herbs seem to retain their flavor better than others when dried; for example, dried parsley has very little flavor, but dried tarragon tastes reasonably close to fresh tarragon. Which ...
3
votes
1answer
3k views

Can you preserve canned kidney beans so that they still have their shape?

I buy kidney beans in a can, but the amount is always too big. Normally, I throw away the leftover beans, thinking that freezing them will turn them into mush (thinking the water will expand and make ...
9
votes
5answers
4k views

Why prevent apples from turning brown?

It's somewhat well-known that applying an acidic solution to sliced apples prevents them from turning brown as quickly. I believe that the primary motivation to prevent the "browning" is aesthetic: ...
6
votes
3answers
2k views

Do tinned foods go off (stale)?

This morning I found a tin of baked beans with a best before date of August 2014. A colleague of mine told me that it's perfectly safe to eat, and that tinned foods never go off. Can this be true? Do ...
4
votes
1answer
2k views

Preserve cut potatoes

I am going to cut some potatoes tonight for a dish I am going to make tomorrow. Will keeping the cut pieces in water immediately after cutting preserve them? There are suggestions at other websites ...
15
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4answers
2k views

Can one preserve food by periodically heating it?

I get that keeping food temperature low will slow down chemical reactions and preserve food, but sometimes my sister preserves food by heating it every 6 hours or so (up to 1-2 days). Does this help ...
10
votes
4answers
1k views

Corned Beef - From Scratch

I want to make corned beef, completely from scratch. How do I: Select the cut of beef to corn? Corn that cut? I'm well aware of how to prepare corned beef after that process, but I'd like to start ...
12
votes
2answers
1k views

How to store garlic?

When I buy garlic, I normally put it in a bowl on the kitchen counter or in the pantry, and then pop off cloves as need. Sometimes, if the garlic has been around for a while, I find what looks like ...
8
votes
4answers
9k views

Why do they put the jelly-like substance in pork pies?

I don't like the jelly-like substance found in between the pastry and meat of pork pies, and I don't know anyone that does, so I was wondering why they put it in. Or is it a by-product of the ...
7
votes
5answers
17k views

Minimum procedure for sterilizing mason jars for canning

My wife and I are about to do some tomato canning tomorrow. We have a bunch of mason jars that we didn't have time to sterilize. She thinks that just washing them in hot water is enough. After ...
5
votes
6answers
28k views

How to dry homemade pork sausages with proper humidity and temperature?

I am new to this and am attempting to dry some pork sausages. I was told to add a quarter pound of salt for every ten pounds of pork meat, which I did (I used ordinary table salt). I have the sausages ...
8
votes
9answers
42k views

Do you have to refrigerate Pickles?

So last weekend the wife and I got a huge jar of pickles at Costco. The thing is bigger than a gallon of milk (the wife really loves her pickles). There really isn't any room for it in the fridge, ...
7
votes
1answer
616 views

How to ship bread or bread dough?

I've been thinking about starting a boutique mail order dinner roll business. Dough While I'd really like to ship dough and allow customers to bake (per roll) at their leisure, I'm beginning to think ...
6
votes
1answer
753 views

How to remove individual steaks from a lump I mistakenly froze together?

I got a vacuum sealer and stored about 7 pieces of steak in 1 bag. I put it in the freezer and just now I decided to take out a couple of steaks to thaw out so I cut open the bag but all the steaks ...
5
votes
4answers
465 views

What flavorings do you use for sour pickles?

I'm making sour pickles (salt water brine, no vinegar) and do not have dill, so I've got garlic and black pepper. What other suggestions do you have for flavorings?
4
votes
2answers
130 views

What causes seals to fail when canning?

My husband made and canned pickles 1 week ago. Tonight he noticed the seals were popped on all but one jar. One other time the same thing happened when he canned green beans. What would be the cause ...
4
votes
3answers
3k views

How long can a bottle of self-made basil sauce last without rotting?

I made a bottle of basil sauce by myself last year summer. It composed of basil leave, extra virgin olive oil, pine nuts, garlic and parmesan cheese. It was kept in a glass bottle in the ...
3
votes
3answers
392 views

Pasta preservation

I have some extra pasta, cooked. I have no extra sauce to put the pasta in. What's the best way to preserve it so it lasts for a day or hopefully two without getting dry or rotten?
2
votes
2answers
9k views

homemade chilli oil

I am making chilli oil using light olive oil, crushed chilli, dried garlic, dried fennel seeds and parsley. I have been making this for years. I am concerned about this Botulinum business. Should I ...
2
votes
1answer
82 views

What are 'quick cook' beans?

I've been looking at recipes to prepare in bulk and store in mason jars for a few weeks. A company called Honeyville Farms sells a bunch of freeze dried stuff for this purpose, as well as 'quick cook' ...
2
votes
1answer
10k views

How long does it take botulism spores to germinate in the fridge?

Based on this question, I started wondering how long I could keep an anerobic food in the fridge before I have to worry about botulism colonization. 1 day? 3 days? 2 months? Clearly it's not a ...
2
votes
2answers
388 views

Are there alternative ways to test fruit preserves for doneness?

I've tried twice to make fruit preserves using only the natural pectins in the fruit. The first time with plums where the jam was much to thick, and yesterday orange marmalade which came out tasting ...
0
votes
0answers
298 views

Can I freeze egg whites?

I saw this question and it got me thinking, can I freeze egg whites, and if so is there anything I need to bear in mind when doing so?