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

learn more… | top users | synonyms

5
votes
3answers
4k views

Separate cutting boards: Cooked vs Uncooked meat

I know it is common knowledge that one should using different cutting boards for meat and vegetables (cross contamination), but should you also use a different cutting board for raw/cooked meat? Or at ...
5
votes
4answers
328 views

Meals safe in danger zone

I'm on campus for most of the day, and since eating on campus is expensive, I would bring leftover dinners with me. Since they would sit in my backpack for several hours before eating, I would use one ...
5
votes
8answers
4k views

What to do about beetle infestation of wheat products? How do we prevent reinfestation?

Today my wife went to make some bread. She noticed some very small insects in the whole wheat and regular flour. Upon further inspection, many of our wheat based products were infested with these ...
5
votes
6answers
13k views

Storage after slow cooking

I love my slow cooker but cooling food seems to take forever. Usually, I just pop the crock into the oven (no heat) and store until the next morning. So we're talking from 9PM (I eat dinner late) ...
5
votes
3answers
747 views

Is my food spoiled after a power outage?

My power went out for about 20 hours today, from 1am to 9pm. I'm wondering if the food in my refrigerator and freezer are spoiled. Here's some info: High temperature was about 100F outside, but only ...
5
votes
3answers
3k views

How to protect hand skin when preparing food

My hand skin is extremely dry due to exposure to water. But when cooking, it is inevitable to submerge my hands in water, for example, to wash food. So I was wondering generally how to protect my ...
5
votes
3answers
3k views

Are fresh, raw cashews different from store-bought?

I have a pen pal in Brazil (is it still a pen pal if we e-mail? anyway...) and knowing that I like nuts sent me some cashews. Apparently there is a cashew farm near enough to her that she went right ...
5
votes
2answers
2k views

Is it safe to eat the white “dots” in peaches?

(full size image) As you can see there are white "dots" where the seed used to be. Is it OK to eat them? What are they, anyway? (I was worried they're some parasite or disease of the fruit)
5
votes
4answers
2k 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 ...
5
votes
6answers
68k views

How do I know if a black banana is too old to be eaten?

From time to buy, I buy too many bananas. For the future, I am considering refrigerating them instead of eating them, but they turn black. How can I know whether a black banana is still edible?
5
votes
3answers
8k views

Reheating Spinach

I have heard that one shouldn't reheat a meal with spinach in it. Is there any truth in this and what is the reason?
5
votes
2answers
1k views

Rules for refreezing food

What are the general rules regarding when can you refreeze food that was frozen and then thawed in the fridge? and what are the reasons behind them? (Hygiene? Food quality?). Let's assume for the sake ...
5
votes
1answer
45k views

Is it ok to store open cans in the fridge?

I'd been taught growing up that you should never store canned food in the fridge in the open can. Is there any scientific basis to this, or is it just an old wives tale? What types of foods should ...
5
votes
2answers
6k views

How long can I keep a chicken carcass and still make stock from it?

I bought a whole chicken for dinner two days ago. Immediately after quartering it, I put it back into a zip-top bag and put it in the bottom of the fridge. So, roughly around 40 hours ago. I'd like ...
5
votes
2answers
3k views

frozen blueberries kept thawed

Had a couple bags of frozen blueberries. Put them in the fridge to thaw. They've been in the fridge for several weeks. Can I still cook with them?
5
votes
5answers
281 views

Is it safe to eat an apple cooked inside poultry?

My guess is that yes, you can; however, my mother always set them aside, not to be eaten. Any ideas?
5
votes
3answers
2k views

Testicles as food?

When I read that you can buy and eat testicles I wondered whether I should try it once, since I'm basically open to anything that tastes good. I wonder how I should prepare them. If I buy testicles ...
5
votes
3answers
989 views

A question of Fishmonger basics and fish processing and handling?

I went to a fishmonger for the first time yesterday and I have a few basic questions. Should the place smell like fish? I have been informed that it should not smell like fish and if it did they did ...
5
votes
4answers
532 views

Cooking with a cut or burn on my hands

I know from this question that I should avoid cooking (at least without gloves) if I have an open cut. However, once a cut starts to heal, how can I tell if it's safe to cook without gloves? Are ...
5
votes
6answers
2k views

The Opposite of How to Chill Beer Quickly

Recently I had occasion to put @Kevin Selker 's answer to the test in terms of rapidly chilling beer. However, we uncovered a problem the next morning where people had taken beer and thrown it in the ...
5
votes
2answers
231 views

Do I need to use sterilized jars straight away?

When making jams and preserves you obviously need to sterilize the jars. After the jars have been sterilized do you need to use them straight away or can you sterilize them in advance and keep them ...
5
votes
2answers
1k views

Is the rapid ice bath chill post-sous vide actually necessary when putting the meat/fish in the freezer?

In the past, I would frequently cook (in the oven) 6+ lbs (3+ kg) of salmon fillets (usually took ~25 min) to an internal temp of 145-150 F (62.5-65 C), take them out, let them set on the counter for ...
5
votes
1answer
2k views

The bottom of my black cheap pan has worn off and I can now see the metal below where food would go. Is that pan safe to use anymore?

As part of my "kitchen inventory package" my short stay agency gave me for my cooking, there's a pan. After a couple of mistakes (cough using it to heat sauce without adding oil (as instructed!) then ...
5
votes
2answers
25k views

How can I tell whether beetroot is still edible?

I have some raw beetroot I bought about a week ago, having stored them at room temperature since. It's the first time I bought it raw, and I'm unsure whether it's still edible. It is already soft, ...
5
votes
1answer
2k views

I left stock out to cool overnight. Is it safe to use?

I made a Peking duck stock, strained it while hot, then left it to cool overnight. My apartment is 24 degrees C. In the morning, I divided it into smaller portions and refrigerated it. I'd never made ...
5
votes
4answers
865 views

Can I use a reused can for serving food

Since 1919, tin cans have been the symbol of the Tin Can Tourists organization (vintage trailer enthusiasts). I want to serve red beans & rice in a recycled can (actually cleaned all-meat cat food ...
5
votes
2answers
27k views

How long will fresh scallops keep in the refrigerator?

Today I bought one pound of fresh scallops from the seafood counter at the local market, but my dinner plans have changed - I am no longer planning to cook the scallops this evening and I don't ...
5
votes
4answers
3k views

How deep do you need to insert the probe in a piece of meat to guarantee accuracy?

I have a wired thermometer that I mainly use for roasts, which can support the entire probe inside the meat. However, I used it last night to cook some country style ribs (pork) and was only able to ...
5
votes
2answers
2k views

What are the ranges of Pork Temperature that are flavorful and safe?

USDA guidelines for Pork state that you should cook it to 160F. I have heard over the years that you can undercook from that, which seems desirable, as 160F is going to be pretty dry. I know the ...
5
votes
2answers
2k views

Why exactly is thawing via hot water bad?

I read all over the internet and labels that you shouldn't thaw with hot water? However, tons of people leave meat to get to room temperature, so how is thawing with hot water bad? For instance, when ...
5
votes
4answers
948 views

Is it ok to keep reusing a water bottle indefinitely?

I have a 1.5 liter plastic water bottle (the disposable kind) that I keep on a shelf by my bed. I fill it every night before bed, and generally nearly finish it by the morning and refill it when I ...
5
votes
1answer
323 views

Can a few bad (dead) mussels harm a larger batch?

I realize there are numerous related questions on freshness of mussels: Fresh mussels, or are they? How do I determine if my mussels are fresh? I couldn't find exactly what I'm looking for. So ...
5
votes
4answers
5k views

What is the impact of repeated cooling and reheating of maple syrup?

Today I discovered a 1/4-full bottle of pure maple syrup had gotten moldy, so searched this site and came across this question: Should maple syrup be stored in the refrigerator? My follow-up question ...
5
votes
1answer
346 views

Safety of Egg Yolk Glaze

Yesterday I baked a special loaf of bread with an egg yolk glaze. After it was mostly cooled I covered it with plastic wrap and set it on the counter to be served today. I am now concerned that I ...
5
votes
2answers
8k views

How necessary is it to marinade meat before making jerkies?

So I just got myself a dehydrator, for the purpose of making jerkies. I was thinking of just seasoning the meat lightly instead of marinating them, which takes considerably more time, needs more ...
5
votes
1answer
11k views

Is it safe to eat pumpkins grown specifically for carving?

As it is coming up to Halloween, there is an abundance of cheap pumpkins in the shops now. I quite like to eat pumpkin rather than carve them. Are the large round orange pumpkins good to eat are are ...
5
votes
3answers
85 views

How can I safely re-heat a chicken pie without burning the crust?

Last night I made a chicken pie with ham, cheese and other awesomeness inside. However, I'm worried about re-heating it safely for consumption. I estimate there are two servings (so today's and ...
5
votes
1answer
132 views

Is rare pheasant safe?

I'm planning to cook pheasant breast this evening and want to know if I can have it rare, as I would with duck breast. I know most government food agencies err on the side of caution (cook until all ...
5
votes
1answer
392 views

Why cook green plantains?

Many cookbooks and chefs recommend cooking green plantains before eating them. Is it just because of all the starch? Or are there any toxins as in sprouting potatoes? Does the ratio of amylose to ...
5
votes
1answer
17k views

Can you refreeze chicken after it has been cooked from frozen

I buy chicken breasts already frozen from my local supermarket. I want to let them defrost naturally (IE leave the breasts out until thawed at room temperate) and then cook them in a fruit sauce. At ...
5
votes
1answer
458 views

Is extremely young meat indigestible?

Extensive rewrite: Young meat is considered unfit for human consumption by the European Union: "derives from animals which are dead before slaughter, stillborn, unborn or slaughtered under the age ...
5
votes
1answer
2k views

Are the white crystals on my American Cheese safe to eat?

I have some American Cheese with fine white crystals on the outside of each slice. They have a gritty texture. Is this a sign that the cheese is spoiled, or just lactic acid salts like aged cheese ...
5
votes
1answer
47 views

How keep prepared courgette fresh?

I am making a pasta dish at school that has courgette in it. The recipe says grate the courgette and because I don't have much time at school to do it, I want to do it at home. I do not know how to ...
5
votes
3answers
629 views

Can I eat white vinegar if it has tons of deposits in it?

I have a bottle of white vinegar on which it says that the presence of deposits is normal. My problem/concern is that there are LOTS of deposits. What are they? Is there any danger associated with ...
5
votes
1answer
2k views

Do some breeds of chicken have particularly red meat when cooked?

Tonight, my friend and I ordered a fried chicken special at a restaurant with a local food theme. It was a great dish. Both of us got very pink chicken. I am pretty sure that my plate had three ...
5
votes
2answers
2k views

Is it safe to use the same cooking utensils for raw and cooked meat?

So, being new to cooking, I tried cooking a pan-seared ribeye steak for the first time recently. I'm just getting new cooking utensils, and the idea of flipping the steak is something I'm not sure ...
5
votes
2answers
1k views

Am I cooking frozen fish safely?

I am always ultra paranoid about cooking food properly - especially fish. I have started buying frozen salmon. On the packet it says to cook from frozen covered with some water in the microwave. I ...
5
votes
3answers
4k views

What's the black thing at the bottom of navel oranges?

Sometimes I'll cut into a navel orange and notice something black inside which originates at the bottom of the orange, where the navel is. What is it? I have seen it get pretty far into the fruit ...
5
votes
1answer
110 views

How long Pasteurized Eggs can be refrigerated?

I routinely pasteurize eggs in batches of 12 so if I don't have time for a full breakfast in the morning, I crack a few open in a glass of milk with some protein powder. The approach I've been using ...
5
votes
1answer
612 views

Safety of room-temperature soaker from Reinhart's *Whole Grain Breads*

One of the “tricks” used in Peter Reinhart's Whole Grain Breads is to soak various whole grains in water, at room temperature, for 12–24 hours. For example, in his “Multigrain Stuan” formula, he calls ...