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I left cheese out overnight. Is it still tasty?
January 19, 2007 5:40 PM   Subscribe

I left my cheese out overnight. Is it still okay to eat?

After yesterday's pizza, I neglected to return the cheese to the fridge. This includes a mozzarella block, loosely wrapped in plastic with an exposed end, a block of parmesean (same wrap situation), and a tub of fresh mozzarella in olivine. It was left out for approxamately 20 hours. Is any of it recoverable for tonight's pizza?
posted by FearAndLoathingInLJ to Food & Drink (23 answers total)
 
yes.
posted by matteo at 5:46 PM on January 19, 2007


I've done this many a time, and I'm still around. Even if there's some bacteria in your kitchen, the baking of the pizza should kill it. And the cheese isn't any more likely, I don't think, to carry bacteria than anything else (your hands, utensils, etc.).

Enjoy!
posted by altcountryman at 5:48 PM on January 19, 2007


Dude, that's what cheese is for. That's why we invented it. It's milk that you can leave out too long and eat it and not get sick.
posted by nebulawindphone at 5:50 PM on January 19, 2007 [5 favorites]


ditto everything so far, nothing wrong with leaving cheese out of the fridge for extended periods of time. It's already spoiled milk.
posted by now i'm piste at 5:52 PM on January 19, 2007


You bet! Enjoy!
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 6:10 PM on January 19, 2007


Well heck, Velveeta is sold on the regular un-cooled shelves in the grocery store. Oh wait. You said cheese. Sorry.

But I vote yes as well.
posted by The Deej at 6:14 PM on January 19, 2007


The great thing about cheese is:
when part of the block goes moldy, just slice off the mold and eat the rest. (This grosses some people out, for some reason).
posted by zerokey at 6:34 PM on January 19, 2007


@ zerokey:
I've heard when one part of a food goes moldy, you should throw out the whole thing. Is this untrue for cheese?
posted by mwang1028 at 6:48 PM on January 19, 2007


I think we had the moldy cheese discussion before in one of the other 'Will it kill me' threads. IIRC, or if not, this is what I believe: Soft cheese = ew, no, because you don't really know where the mold is and hard cheese is fine to excise and eat.
posted by cobaltnine at 6:57 PM on January 19, 2007


I do the cheese mold cutting off thing.
I started doing it after reading about it in a book describing medieval life.

In retrospect, maybe food safety tips from medieval times aren't the way to go, but I haven't gotten sick or died from it yet.
posted by Cat Pie Hurts at 6:59 PM on January 19, 2007 [1 favorite]


I saw this hilarious segment about a marketer who was decoding consumers. He found that the French see the cheese as alive, and in the US it was dead. That's why it's kept in the fridge in the US, and allowed to sit out an breathe in France.

No, it won't kill you. You might actually find it has more flavour. (Although, depending on the cheese, that might not be a good thing.)
posted by kamelhoecker at 7:01 PM on January 19, 2007 [1 favorite]


"I saw this hilarious segment about a marketer who was decoding consumers. He found that the French see the cheese as alive, and in the US it was dead. That's why it's kept in the fridge in the US, and allowed to sit out an breathe in France."

Clotaire Rapaille, author of "My Cheese is Dead." Great Frontline episode. :)
posted by stewiethegreat at 7:35 PM on January 19, 2007 [1 favorite]


Yet another "I cut off the moldy bits and use the rest."

Sadly, I have to do this before SeƱora Tacos notices the mold, because she disagrees with the practice.
posted by Tacos Are Pretty Great at 7:55 PM on January 19, 2007


That's not a mold. THIS is a mold!
posted by flabdablet at 8:06 PM on January 19, 2007


I cut the cheese.

Just slice off any mold and go for it, like everyone else said.
posted by JohnnyGunn at 8:07 PM on January 19, 2007 [1 favorite]


Instead of cutting the mold portion off, I wash it off using warm running water.
posted by JujuB at 9:20 PM on January 19, 2007


Slicing off mold works for some foods and not for others -- in cheese it is possible to see where the mold is and carefully cut off a half inch or so around. In bread, by the time you see it has spread all over and the loaf should be tossed.

I do wonder if the practice of cutting is as true of soft cheese as it is of hard...
posted by Margalo Epps at 9:22 PM on January 19, 2007


You're actually not supposed to refrigerate cheese (with the exception of perishable cheeses like cottage cheese, which are so close to milk that they shouldn't even really be called cheese except for the added enzymes).

You will be fine.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 4:34 AM on January 20, 2007


Re. cutting mould off soft cheeses: no. Hard, fine, but the usual recommendation is to just pitch it if it's soft. "Such foods with high moisture content can be contaminated below the surface..."

True, in my experience. The softer the cheese, the more likely you are to find little veins of fur after hacking off the outside.
posted by kmennie at 7:25 AM on January 20, 2007


AskMe: I left my cheese out overnight. Is it still okay to eat?
posted by M.C. Lo-Carb! at 7:52 AM on January 20, 2007


You're actually not supposed to refrigerate cheese

Quite. Don't worry about it, and don't put it back in the fridge either.
posted by jack_mo at 9:43 AM on January 20, 2007


20 answers and no "cutting the cheese" references?
posted by loiseau at 9:57 AM on January 20, 2007


Go for it.
posted by weapons-grade pandemonium at 11:40 AM on January 20, 2007


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