How Risky Is It to Eat Questionable Leftovers?

One of the most common questions on cooking sites and forums is whether leftover food should be thrown out. The best advice is to prevent these questions , by learning how to store food properly, estimate quantities, keep track of what you have, and use leftovers creatively.

But what happens if you fear your food has been hanging around for too long? You can look up storage times on various sites, but the recommendations tend to be overly cautious. So much depends on how the food was prepared, and the storage conditions. I suggest using those sites only as a general guideline. If the food looks and smells good, it’s probably safe.

Food Storage Containers II: Choosing the Best Shape for Freshness and Convenience

Think for a moment about how many storage containers you have in your kitchen. Are you using them as efficiently as you can? This is the second part of my series on storage containers. See Part I: Choosing the Best Material.

Keeping Food Cold for a Day Away from Home

I asked readers on the Cooking Manager Facebook page for topic ideas. One reader told me about her teenage son, who leaves the house at 6:30 AM and returns at 8 PM. The food provided by his school is expensive and unhealthy. She gives him some cash, but he’s expected to bring most of his […]

How to Cool Food Quickly for Storage

My mother used to cool off food before refrigeration. But the safety guidelines have changed. Thanks to better refrigerator efficiency, and concerns about food spoilage, it’s best to refrigerate foods immediately after cooking. Apparently this poses no danger to the rest of the food in your fridge. But there are times when you will still […]

Friday Review #36

It’s time for a review of posts you might have missed on Cooking Manager. Summer Cooking Healthy and Easy Summer Salads. Leora posted even more summer salad ideas. Some Like It Cold: Summer Soups Cool Summer Cooking Tips Prepare Vegetable Salads in Advance   Recipes: Beets Marinated with Ginger and Garlic Wilted Red Peppers with Garlic   […]

Cool Summer Cooking Tips

During the winter I have lots of energy for cooking. It’s a pleasure to turn on the stove and warm up the house. But in the summer, I just wish the food would magically appear in front of me.

Readers on the Facebook page for Cooking Manager (join us!) asked for a list of ways to cook while keeping cool. You can bet that in a few weeks, I’ll be reviewing my own tips for inspiration. Please add your own tips in the comments.

First let’s look at appliances. Some appliances generate more heat than others, and they should be avoided.

Is This Food Safe to Eat?

Every day WikiAnswers.lists dozens of questions about whether it’s safe to eat the three-day-old quiche, or the raw chicken left on the counter. The problem is that every food is stored under different conditions, and this makes a huge difference in how long it keeps. Published guidelines tend to be conservative. If you follow them strictly you may end up throwing out good food.

I wrote up a list of things to consider when deciding about questionable leftovers. The list will help you think about the type of food and whether it was stored properly. But first, examine the food. Leftover food should always look and smell normal.

The list is also a guide for storing foods carefully in the future. You pay good money for your food, why throw it out because it wasn’t put away properly?

Microwave Myths

How do microwaves work?
Microwaves work by radiating microwave energy into food. This energy only heats up the moisture in food, so dried foods may burn or explode. The waves pass through glass, ceramic, plastic and paper, but metal deflects them.
Defrosting in the microwave.
Do microwaves undercook food?

Individual Plates or Family Style? A Comparison of Serving

Growing up my mother served meals on individual plates. She knew just how much to give everyone. We never felt deprived. The food was good and we knew we could always ask for more. My father would complain that my mother gave him too much, but he ate it all and managed to stay slim. […]

Don’t Bite the Bugs: How to Prevent Insect Infestation

Insects aren’t necessarily bad for you, and insects in grains have served as a source of Vitamin B12 for vegans in some countries. However, they can destroy your food. And most people prefer not to include them in their diet. Since bugs aren’t kosher, I’ve learned techniques for keeping bugs out of food in the […]