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Leftover Logistics: Storing Leftover Foods

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By Mia Bolaris-Forget

With my hectic schedule, I usually don’t get home until after 7pm and that means DH has to “wait” (willingly) so that we can have dinner. But, we all know what the experts say about eating after 7, “don’t do it”. But, if you have to shop and cook after work, eating any sooner seems like an impossibility, unless your serving up frozen dinners, eating out, or ordering in; which is why I “love” to prepare ahead of time. In fact, part of Saturday is dedicated to culinary creations that can be stored, frozen, and reheated during the rest of the week. And, unlike most, I am often grateful for leftovers. Yet, since I was a child I was weary of lingering leftovers.

According to experts, even leftovers have a time span, suggesting that they should be securely stored and refrigerated within two hours of being served. And, they suggest being cautious about what you retrieve from a standing buffet as many foods accumulate bacteria, which they note does best at room temperature.

Turkey and other (such) meats they suggest should be removed from the bone, and stored according to how you plan on using it. They also recommend that it’s safest to consume them within four days after refrigeration, making it essential to keep “handy” only the amount you expect to use and freeze the rest. In fact, vacuum-sealing is especially recommended giving foods a much longer lifespan of several months. Turkey, for instance can be frozen for up to four months and if stored in broth can last for up to six.

Side dishes such as salads, stuffing, vegetables, casseroles and the like are best consumed within two days of refrigeration or they should be frozen. Experts suggest reheating at an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit, and gravies should be brought to a bubbling boil.


Long Island Home & Lifestyle Articles > Leftover Logistics: Storing Leftover Foods

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