Questions on handling, preparing, and storing food in ways that prevent foodborne illness.

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18
votes
5answers
11k views

Is it really necessary to wash a skillet that will be heated up again soon?

I made some eggs in a cast iron skillet yesterday and didn't wash the skillet. Today I want to make eggs again. Is it really necessary for me to wash the skillet before making more eggs? It would ...
14
votes
3answers
34k views

Are Green Potatoes OK?

Sometimes when peeling a potato, I find that areas of it are a bright shade of green. Does this mean that: A) The potato is OK to eat? B) The potato is OK to eat, as long as the green parts are ...
16
votes
5answers
339k views

How long does it take for milk to spoil unrefrigerated?

A half gallon of milk (in the paper carton, not plastic) got left in the car for 1.5 hours in about 80 degree (~27 °C) weather (evening so no direct sunlight). Is it still probably safe to eat if one ...
16
votes
3answers
28k views

Are refrigerated hard boild eggs really unsafe after a week?

Most sites that I've googled (such as http://www.ochef.com/1009.htm, and http://whatscookingamerica.net/Q-A/eggs2.htm) say that refrigerated hard-boiled eggs need to be eaten within one week. I'm a ...
4
votes
2answers
7k views

How do food producers determine expiration dates on products and ingredients?

It is well known that food expiration dates are somewhat arbitrary. For some foods, they are much more important than others -- for example, you can pretty easily tell on your own if milk has gone bad ...
3
votes
2answers
810 views

Do “Best by: XX-XX-XX” foods have an expiration date?

How long will foods that have "Best by: XX-XX-XX" on the product last past that date? I have tried looking online, and all I can find is anecdotal evidence, which isn't very assuring for me since ...
26
votes
4answers
1.1m views

How long will uncooked chicken keep in the fridge?

My wife is obsessed about not leaving uncooked meats in the fridge longer than a day (esp. Chicken). If we buy chicken breast and we're not going to use them the next day, she'll put them in the ...
19
votes
4answers
28k views

Does meat need to be washed before preparation?

I don't even remember where I have learned that, but I've always thought it common knowledge: Before a piece of meat gets seasoned, or malleted for tenderizing (sorry, don't know the English word for ...
12
votes
1answer
8k views

How dangerous is it to bake food with plastic?

I just baked a spiral ham for an hour. There was a little piece of plastic that I was supposed to 'remove before cooking', but I didn't notice it. After an hour, the ham was baked and the plastic ...
12
votes
6answers
44k views

Can I re-cook a ham that was left out overnight?

I left a fully cooked ham in a bag out overnight. It was refrigerator temperature when I took it out at 9pm. Our Seattle home was not heated; it was about 50 degrees last night. I found it at 6am and ...
11
votes
7answers
54k views

Can I Brown Beef For Slow Cooking the Night Before

Many slow cooker recipes suggest that beef be browned before being added to the slow cooker, which is definitely better for the flavor of the dish. I've always believed that this browning must occur ...
10
votes
9answers
15k views

How can I ensure food safety if my cooking utensils have touched raw meat?

Twice in the past week or so, I've wondered whether my cooking utensil was still clean enough to cook / serve with. Here were the situations: Cooking ground sausage (no casing). While breaking the ...
6
votes
1answer
2k views

Can I eat cheese which has been “infected” with blue cheese mold?

Recently, I bought two pieces of cheese - St. Agur and Pyrenean cheese. They were cut from wheels, not pre-packaged. At home, I removed the foil and placed them in the same plastic container in the ...
3
votes
4answers
22k views

how long to cook a turkey per pound

I'm cooking a turkey for thanksgiving for the first time. I've got a beautiful 11 lb turkey and according to the websites I found, I should cook it for about three hours. When I asked my girlfriend's ...
0
votes
2answers
17k views

Used warm setting by accident [duplicate]

I put some uncooked stew meat and veggies on this morning and left for 5 hours. When I came home I realized it was only set on warm. Is my meat safe to eat? I have now put it on the stove to cook.
33
votes
14answers
6k views

Nonstick cookware or not?

I am looking to replace my >10 year old Calphalon nonstick cookware. I can see the nonstick surface coming off the pans, and am starting to worry about how much of that is getting into our food. I ...
33
votes
12answers
101k views

Is it safe to eat smoked bacon without grilling?

The reason I ask this is due to the fact nothing on the bacon packaging indicates it can or cannot be eaten 'raw' and in general eating raw meat is a bad idea.
16
votes
3answers
4k views

Metal dust/shavings in food from knife wear?

I've been wondering about this for a while, since getting interested in knife sharpening. When using a knife, it will get duller. One (the primary) reason being that you "bend" the edge. You fix this ...
15
votes
7answers
58k views

How do I maximize the shelf life of my homemade hot sauce?

I am planning on putting this year's crop of hot peppers to use by trying my hand at making my own hot sauces. I've never tried this before, but I've found a number of recipes on the Internet. ...
11
votes
2answers
24k views

Mold on Vinegar Batch?

About 2-3 months ago I decided to start my own batch of vinegar. I started with some Braggs apple cider vinegar which contains the mother, and I added some old wine and some fruit juice to the mix. ...
21
votes
14answers
81k views

How do I stop my fire alarm from going off when I cook?

My fire alarm always goes off when I cook, even when the food is not burning. Because of this, I have never been able to keep batteries in my fire alarms. How can I stop this from happening?
13
votes
2answers
104k views

Is it safe to eat butter after it has crossed its expiration date? Does butter ever spoil in fridge?

I just came back from a long trip and I was cleaning out my fridge, and I noticed that there is an expiration date on the butter. It expired about two months from when I bought it. The butter doesn't ...
11
votes
2answers
16k views

Is cooking with olive oil bad or toxic?

I've heard that cooking with olive oil is bad for you and can be toxic. Is this true? If so, to what extent? I see no warning on the container of my olive oil that states that it would be bad to ...
7
votes
3answers
771 views

Is it true cooked food cannot be left in room temperature for longer than 4 hours?

I have only recently discovered that cooked food shouldn't be left in room temperature for longer than 2/4 hours. I lived in a tropical country which is warm and humid and I have been growing up ...
7
votes
6answers
4k views

Infusing olive oil with herbs

I have some basil from my garden that I would like to infuse with olive oil to flavor it. I was going to pack the jar with the herbs and then pour the oil over it, keep it in a jar for about a week ...
6
votes
12answers
16k views

Sous vide without plastic bags?

I really like the idea of cooking steak using sous vide. However, I am very wary of heating food up together with plastic, and then eating the food, as I believe that at high temperatures, chemicals ...
3
votes
4answers
106k views

How can I tell when chicken thighs are sufficiently cooked to eat?

Last night I was grilling chicken thighs on a barbecue and I was told that if there was any pink inside them, they are not safe to eat. My question is twofold: (a) Is this true? (b) Is there a way ...
26
votes
3answers
4k views

Food safety when tasting from dish

When making a dish, I of course taste it through out the process of cooking until its done. I have been extra careful - Each time I taste from the dish I use a new spoon - This means that I have to ...
21
votes
2answers
364 views

How prevalent was foodborne botulism before stricter food safety guidelines?

Nowadays, foodborne botulism seems to be quite rare, even from potentially high-risk things like home canned goods. (The CDC Botulism Surveillance reports indicate on the scale of tens of confirmed ...
16
votes
8answers
15k views

Do I have to peel red potatoes before baking them?

I recently made some potato wedges in the oven. I shared this recipe with my relative, who admonished me for not properly peeling the red potatoes before baking them. She claims that there are ...
15
votes
1answer
34k views

How should I deal with blood released while thawing meat in the refrigerator?

Saturday I pulled a package of venison from my freezer to thaw and hope to make stroganoff with it tonight. However, this morning I noticed that the package (in a bowl) had really released a lot of ...
15
votes
7answers
27k views

Does wax on citrus fruit make the zest unsafe to eat or compromise its flavor?

A number of (chiefly British) recipes specify unwaxed lemons for zesting. Unwaxed citrus fruit are not widely available here in Sweden, so I have to make do by attempting to remove the wax before ...
14
votes
9answers
264k views

Can I put frozen meat in a slow cooker?

I was wondering if I can put meat directly from the freezer into a slow-cooker. I want to be able to put chicken in the slow-cooker without having to let it defrost for a whole day in the fridge. It ...
13
votes
7answers
106k views

How long does it take for buttermilk to go bad?

I love making buttermilk pancakes but I can never seem to use up my buttermilk before it passes the expiration date. The thing is, if I take a solid whiff of the "expired" buttermilk it smells great (...
13
votes
9answers
21k views

How do you put out a grease fire?

I recently had a grease fire - the pan caught on fire from a little fat that spilled over the skillet. Is there a safe, quick way to put out a fire like this?
12
votes
2answers
2k views

What are some techniques to cool down a dish so that we can store it in the refrigerator safely?

My wife just cooked some 'plof' (an Ashkenazi Jewish recipe). A one pot chicken, rice, onion, carrots dish. All those are in their respective layers. She just finished cooking it. We're going to go ...
11
votes
3answers
8k views

Do you use paper or cloth towel for patting a meat dry before frying?

It is advised to pat a steak dry before frying. I've used paper towels in the past for this, but sometimes parts of them stick to meat. Now and then I've used a clean cloth kitchen towel for patting ...
8
votes
2answers
4k views

What is the sous vide botulism risk if storing meat post-cooking at home?

So I understand that cooking sous vide has a potentially high risk of botulism due to the anaerobic environment (vacuum). As such, you need to be careful with time and temp combinations. If you are ...
7
votes
5answers
70k views

How can I know whether a potato is too old?

I have many kilograms of potatoes that are turning bad, I don't want to throw them away. The term "turning bad" means that the best-before days on the products vary between 1-4 weeks i.e. they are old ...
7
votes
3answers
3k views

Is it safe to prepare Chicken Tartare?

I know that raw chicken generally has a lot of safety concerns. Is there anyway that I can source the chicken to minimize these worries? What are the general concerns? How can I combat them? Are there ...
5
votes
5answers
762 views

I bite my nails. How can I keep proper hygiene in the kitchen?

I'm not a professional chef, but I think someone will have this issue, somewhere, and is a chef. A similar question asked about having a cold, but nail biting is much worse due to the obvious amount ...
4
votes
5answers
6k views

Does spoiled milk make any ingredient?

Bear with me here, My roommate insist that she wants to keep her spoiled 2% milk in the fridge, it's been 1 month! That thing look disgusting. To my knowledge, you don't use rotten milk for anything/...
3
votes
2answers
183 views

How long will Sake last in the fridge?

We've had Sake chilling in our fridge for about a year now. It has been opened. Is this still safe to drink or is it time to throw it out?
19
votes
5answers
34k views

How safe is steak tartare?

How safe is steak tartare? What can I do when preparing it make sure it is safe to eat?
15
votes
5answers
113k views

Can store bought salmon be used for sashimi?

Is it safe to consume raw fish purchased at the fish counter of a typical suburban grocery store? If not, do you have any tips for finding sushi grade fish.
14
votes
7answers
86k views

My ginger is blueish… is it safe?

I bought ginger at the grocery store last week and kept it, unpeeled, in the fridge. Today I sliced it open and there is a ring of a blueish colour, instead of the yellow I was expecting. The ginger ...
12
votes
6answers
69k views

Can chicken not completely cooked then cooled be fully cooked later?

I cooked some chicken but didn't realise it hadn't completely cooked through. It then went in the fridge and a day later I cut through it to discover the problem. Is it now safe to put that chicken ...
11
votes
2answers
6k views

Chocolate mousse with cooked eggs?

Most recipes I have seen for mousse require you to use egg yolks and don't involve any cooking of the egg. It's my understanding that when an egg's yolk is still soft (or not cooked at all in this ...
10
votes
6answers
21k views

Is the double boiling canning procedure really necessary?

It seems the usual procedure is to sanitize cans and lids by immersing them in boiling water, to fill the cans, and then to cap them and boil for a few more minutes. If I sanitize a can and then fill ...
9
votes
3answers
2k views

Ideal fridge temperature accounting for temperature spikes

I've read the question on the ideal fridge temperature, but am asking a more involved question about a baseline temperature and temperature spikes. How will a few hours each day at 10 C effect the ...