"Discover Cooking, Discuss Life."

Go Back   Discuss Cooking - Cooking Forums > General Cooking Information > General Cooking
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 03-09-2013, 05:16 PM   #1
Assistant Cook
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: A
Posts: 1
Heating "ready to eat" food

Is there any chance that someone that understands the subject could tell me, whether food that is "ready to eat", if heated needs to be heated properly? And if so, why?

I know that some people might be tempted to just say to heat it properly to be safe, but I'm not interested in that; I'm interested in the actual facts.

It seems to me that anything that is labelled "ready to eat" (and well before its use by date of course) must necessarily have a very small number of bacteria. I've found that apparently at their favourite temperature, the relevant bacteria will double their numbers in 15 minutes. Therefore, if I heated something for 10 minutes that should really be heated for 15 or 20, then the worst that could happen is that the bacteria numbers would double, which would mean that there's still a very small number.

If there is anything else going on that I am missing, please let me know.

Thanks very much,
James

__________________

__________________
jsab500 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2013, 05:33 PM   #2
Executive Chef
 
Rocklobster's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Ottawa Valley, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 4,794
I think it is basically a quality thing. Heating it up changes the texture and improves palatability (i.e. melting cheese, softening the food.). Ready to eat is just precooked food. Just like the leftovers in your fridge, which you could eat cold if you wanted. I don't think bacteria is much of a problem. It might be if you let it sit, thawed out for a long period of time before consuming.
__________________

__________________
Rocklobster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2013, 05:46 PM   #3
Certified Pretend Chef
 
Andy M.'s Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Massachusetts
Posts: 41,408
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rocklobster View Post
I think it is basically a quality thing. Heating it up changes the texture and improves palatability (i.e. melting cheese, softening the food.). Ready to eat is just precooked food. Just like the leftovers in your fridge, which you could eat cold if you wanted. I don't think bacteria is much of a problem. It might be if you let it sit, thawed out for a long period of time before consuming.
+1

Ready-to-eat means it's cooked and just needs to be heated. For example, chili is served hot. If you bought canned or frozen chili it's ready-to-eat but requires heating to be served as chili is normally served. The heating time is just what's required to heat it through.
__________________
"If you want to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first create the universe." -Carl Sagan
Andy M. is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-09-2013, 07:03 PM   #4
Head Chef
 
GLC's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2011
Location: Near Austin, Texas
Posts: 1,216
Righto. It's not "ready to eat" if heating it does anything more than increase the temperature to the satisfying norm. If heating is required to bring about any other substantial change that makes it - well - ready to eat, it's not "ready to eat." A precooked meat patty is "ready to eat." Heating just brings it to normal cooked meat temperature. Vegetables in a steaming bag can be eaten right out of the bag but need heat to change their texture and flavor. Not "ready to eat."

It's not a clear-cut thing in every case. "Heat and serve" may simply bring it to serving temperature, but it can also mean that the cheese topping is melted, and cheesy filling consolidates properly.
__________________
"Kitchen duty is awarded only to those of manifest excellence..." - The Master, Dogen
GLC is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
food

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



» Discuss Cooking on Facebook

Our Communities

Our communities encompass many different hobbies and interests, but each one is built on friendly, intelligent membership.

» More about our Communities

Automotive Communities

Our Automotive communities encompass many different makes and models. From U.S. domestics to European Saloons.

» More about our Automotive Communities

Marine Communities

Our Marine websites focus on Cruising and Sailing Vessels, including forums and the largest cruising Wiki project on the web today.

» More about our Marine Communities


Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 03:23 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2016, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.