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Old 05-24-2014, 09:31 AM   #11
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Dear Taxlady...[ I've spent my life running from the the TaxMAN, so this is a first for me !!].

Thanks so much for your reply.

Unfortunately, I have no idea as to whether I am viewing in "Threaded", 'Hybred", "Linear", or "Touchdown".

I did actually include GLC in my reply, but it would be nice to know if replies can be specific. I have been on other Forums, [ non-cooking] where you can actually reply to an individual post. But It's not really important.

The main thing is to learn from others, and people like yourself are certainly helping me do that !

BTW I like your Robert Heinlein quote !

I certainly don't really want to live as long as I wish.
But 'yes' to the loving as long as I live " !!
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Old 05-24-2014, 11:27 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Burnt-toast View Post
...
Unfortunately, I have no idea as to whether I am viewing in "Threaded", 'Hybred", "Linear", or "Touchdown".
If you look above the posts, there is a blue bar. In that bar it says, "Thread Tools" "Search This Thread" "Rate Thread" "Display Modes. If you click the triangle next to "Display Modes", it will let you choose the one you want. It will have the one you are currently using in bold.

Quote:
I did actually include GLC in my reply, but it would be nice to know if replies can be specific. I have been on other Forums, [ non-cooking] where you can actually reply to an individual post. But It's not really important. ...
I meant using the name at the beginning of the post. I don't think we have any linking to user names in posts.

I switched (temporarily) to "Threaded Mode". I wonder if this post will show up as a reply to your post in the tree structure of the threaded mode.
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Old 05-24-2014, 06:04 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Burnt-toast View Post

The one question I have [ for him or her !] is whether or not it is necessary to let the cooked food cool down before putting it into containers [ in my case sealed plastic clip-boxes] and into the freezer.

So is it possible to cook, put in container, seal, and then freeze straight way, even when hot ?
.
Food must always be cooled before putting in the freezer otherwise it will raise the temp in the freezer which is Not A Good Thing. It's good to decant it into its portion containers while it's hot as smaller amounts cool quicker than large amounts. You could, if your containers are the lock and lock kind which have waterproof seals, put the containers of hot food in a bowl of iced water as GLC said or I've put things in sealed containers outside on the kitchen doorstep in winter!

The secret is to cool it as fast as possible but not to attempt to freeze from hot. I have always understood that you shouldn't put hot stuff in the 'fridge, either, but recently I have heard people say it's OK
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Old 06-24-2014, 12:47 AM   #14
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Hi All. I'm back again with more questions. [ It's always going to be 'questions' from me, as I don't have any 'Answers'.

Also, being in the Entertainment business, There are quite likely to be longish gaps at times between my 'log-ins'. In this business it's either 'Feast or Famine', [ not inapplicable for a foodie site !].

This time my question concerns OMELETTES. I have recently discovered that I really, REALLY like cold omelette. This epiphany occurred entirely by accident, as I'm not usually a great omelette lover. But they are 'quick and Easy'. Especially if you have eggs near the 'best by' date. [Although as it seems to me that they seem to put those on absolutely everything these days.....including CHEESE....which I find extremely strange, I tend to take little notice. It might make a good Headstone Epitaph...." Sell-by Dates are Rubbish "]

Neveretheless, my question concerns how long an omelette, [ or the left-over portion of it] can be left in the fridge before having to be consumed ?

I made one larger than usual to use up the eggs, ate some, and put the rest in the fridge. Then had some for lunch the next day, cold, and it was terrific. Really nice. I expect the French have a name for cold omelette, [ they have a name for most things], but I don't know what it is. 'Cold Omelette' will do for me.

But I think I need to find out how long it can be kept there before becoming 'iffy' ?

Because since my last upset tummy, i'm trying not to do 'Iffy'.

I expect you all know the answer to this. But I don't.

Although hopefully I will do soon !

Thanks.
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Old 06-24-2014, 09:15 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Burnt-toast View Post
Hi. I was looking for a Forum that might deal specifically with all of the above, but couldn't find one !

So if there is one, and I've somehow missed it, please re-direct me !

Most of my interest is about the above, rather than cooking. The reason for that is that I can only cook 4 dishes ! But for reasons of economy, I tend to cook them in far more bulk than can be consumed without all of the thread title.

So, although I have only 4 dishes, I have many questions. And it is on the cards that I may shortly be increasing the number to a massive 5.

Anyway....my question tonight concerns some dishes [ cottage pie actually] that I cooked a while back, decanted into containers, and put them in the freezer. Fortunately I always write the date on the lids.

To be honest, I forgot about them, and came across them the other day. They are dated March 11th 2013. Which makes them nearly 15 months old.

Concerned for own well-being, I Googled on this subject, and found some info which seems to imply that age does not wither them [ sounded like a World War Remembrance Service !], but it will affect the taste. But would not be 'unsafe'.

I was, of course, greatly heartened by this . But have remained slightly suspicious of Google info, ever since I read about how to fell a tree, and ended up nearly killing myself and the dogs.

So if anyone has any better information on this topic, I would be very grateful. Even to the extent of sending you one of the many Cottage Pies I have frozen.

I do understand that people may be a touch worried about giving info that may lead to hospitalisation, or even Cemetaryisation, so am quite happy to accept info on the 'In my Experience.....' basis. That should keep you covered. And if the worst does happen, I'm sure something will be on hand to keep me covered too !

Many Thanks in advance.

BT
Assuming you were careful about keeping your preparation clean and hygienic, cooled the finished dishes quickly and froze them immediately they were cool, and when you reheat them you do so thoroughly, the dishes should be safe to eat. However, while dangerous spoilage may not be a problem, flavour can deteriorate over a long time in the freezer and the dish can become a bit boring with time.

Basically, use your common sense.
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Old 06-24-2014, 09:24 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Burnt-toast View Post
I'm not quite sure how to reply to an individual post,so I guess that is my second question!
Anyway, thanks to all for your excellent replies.
And especially to GLC, who, as befitting a Head Chef, has given me...er...food...for thought.
Because apart from all the technical stuff he has told me, he has made it clear that this whole issue is about temperature change.

And this applies to the cooking in the first place.....the cooling down and fridge-ing or freezing in the second, and the heating up again to a point where it is edible in the third.

[Or is that the fourth ?] Never mind.

The one question I have [ for him or her !] is whether or not it is necessary to let the cooked food cool down before putting it into containers [ in my case sealed plastic clip-boxes] and into the freezer.

Now I have it in my mind from somewhere [ and unfortunately I can't remember where, so can't blame anyone.... ] that you do have to let food cool down before placing it in the freezer.

On the other hand from what you've said, the cooling down is purely to avoid dealing with hot food and cold fingers, which I'm not bothered about if it reduces the risk of the bacteria coming out to play, as you suggested.

So is it possible to cook, put in container, seal, and then freeze straight way, even when hot ?

Or may that not be good for any of the elements concerned.......food, freezer, cook, or eventual consumer ?

I have been thinking of trying one of the contents of a re-heated cottage pie container out on the dogs.

The main thing that is putting me off, is that if it upsets them, I will be the one who has to clear up the mess on the floor, bath the dogs, clean the carpet, and administer the sweet lavender smelling deodorant.

But thanks to all for your replies. Including GLC's comment about the scientist in Alaska who cooked the 36,000 year old Bison meat, and said it was 'kinda tough' !!

His name wasn't Macdonald was it ?

Cheers for now.
I freeze in Lock n' Lock type boxes or freezer bags and pack the food into them while it is hot. Leaving it standing around to cool before packing is asking for trouble. The packing, cooling and freezing must be done as quickly as possible.

One thing I forgot in my previous post is that you must NEVER put hot food in the freezer as it can raise the freezer's temp and cause spoilage of other things in there.

Dogs have much more robust constitutions and less sophisticated tastes than humans so probably not a very good test.
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Old 06-24-2014, 09:35 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Burnt-toast View Post
Hi All. I'm back again with more questions. [ It's always going to be 'questions' from me, as I don't have any 'Answers'.

Also, being in the Entertainment business, There are quite likely to be longish gaps at times between my 'log-ins'. In this business it's either 'Feast or Famine', [ not inapplicable for a foodie site !].

This time my question concerns OMELETTES. I have recently discovered that I really, REALLY like cold omelette. This epiphany occurred entirely by accident, as I'm not usually a great omelette lover. But they are 'quick and Easy'. Especially if you have eggs near the 'best by' date. [Although as it seems to me that they seem to put those on absolutely everything these days.....including CHEESE....which I find extremely strange, I tend to take little notice. It might make a good Headstone Epitaph...." Sell-by Dates are Rubbish "]

Neveretheless, my question concerns how long an omelette, [ or the left-over portion of it] can be left in the fridge before having to be consumed ?

I made one larger than usual to use up the eggs, ate some, and put the rest in the fridge. Then had some for lunch the next day, cold, and it was terrific. Really nice. I expect the French have a name for cold omelette, [ they have a name for most things], but I don't know what it is. 'Cold Omelette' will do for me.

But I think I need to find out how long it can be kept there before becoming 'iffy' ?

Because since my last upset tummy, i'm trying not to do 'Iffy'.

I expect you all know the answer to this. But I don't.

Although hopefully I will do soon !

Thanks.
Spanish tortillas/omelettes are gorgeous cold and are often served as such at breakfast time in Spanish bars. Overnight in the 'fridge is OK if it hasn't been hanging around too long at room temperature but it might go a bit rubbery with longer storage.

Remember - common sense is all.
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Old 06-24-2014, 12:23 PM   #18
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Danes make omelette style stuff specifically to cool and then serve on open faced sandwiches, often as garnish.
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Old 07-12-2014, 01:52 AM   #19
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Hi. I'm home again, [ up in the mountains near Wanaka, South Island, New Zealand] for 2 or 3 weeks, so am having a chance to put into practice all of your excellent advice re my questions !

And because of the time and trouble that several people went to give me the benefit of their advice, I felt it would be rude and ungrateful not to post the results !

Clearly, they were not too dire, or I wouldn't be here to write this post.

At the last count I have 9 Cottage pies frozen on the 5th March, 2013, and 3 Chicken curries frozen about a month later. Because my storage space is limited, I have now decided to either eat them, or throw them out. It all depended on how the first one went.

And the answer is...."Good" !! Firstly, I removed one container from the freezer, and put it in the fridge for 2 days. I was a touch concerned that when I removed it from the fridge to heat it, it appeared to be as frozen as ever. But it probably wasn't. Maybe I should have removed the lid ???

Anyway, I did remove the lid at this stage, and scrapped some ice etc off the top. I then left it out in the kitchen at room temperature for about 8 hours, but which time it appeared to be satisfactorily 'defrosted'.

[ I used the extremely scientific method of sticking a blunt knife in and seeing if it would reach the bottom. Which it did.]

So, now to the re-heating. Bearing in mind advice given on this forum by someone, I reheated it at 'medium' power [ I have a 1200 watt Microwave] for 4 minutes, after which I checked, and it seemed OK.

Partly because at this stage I was worried that it might be a bit dry, or even totally inedible, I also added half a can of spaghetti in tomato sauce, [ just in case it was all I could eat !].

But in fact, I needn't have worried. It tasted fine [ bear in mind, my standards are different from you Professional cooks,] and stage ONE of the experiment was a success.

In other words, it defrosted well, re-heated fine, tasted really good, and went down very well.

Stage 2 was whether or not it would STAY down.

Well, although I didn't get to sleep too quickly, partly because I was anticipating the worst, I need not have worried. I did doze off eventually, only to be awoken really early by a text from my daughter telling me that LeBron James had re-signed for the Cleveland Cavaliers ! Of course I was interested in this great news, but less so at 6.30 in the morning !

However, once I had digested this news, I realized that I had also digested my cottage pie without any problem. So all is well. I shall continue to use up the rest of the frozen food, probably once a week, until they have all been consumed.

I had had a problem with the very first one that I reheated, about a year ago, which had me visiting the bathroom several times in the night ! But as it was from the same batch, I now think that was caused by the fact that I took it straight from the freezer, defrosted it in the microwave, [ maybe not well enough], and then ate it. So maybe the fact that it wasn't properly defrosted was the cause of the malaise ! Whatever, it clearly wasn't the food, as this was the same pie.

So that's it.

Just an update. And a thank you to all who took the time and trouble to advise me on how best to defrost, re-heat etc.

Burnt-toast
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Old 07-12-2014, 10:02 AM   #20
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Of all the things you described, leaving the pie room temp for 8 hours is the only dangerous action you took. No need for that. Room temperature is a great temperature to grow bacteria. It's why we have refrigeration.

Next time defrost in the fridge and into the microwave, or conventional oven.
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