How long does food stay good in refrigerator?
April 9, 2010 8:49 PM   Subscribe

I cooked up some yummy Pastitsio on Friday (ground beef, noodles, onions, spinach, eggs, evaporated milk and feta cheese). If it is sealed tight in the refrigerator, can it be served on Monday? Will it still be good? In the past I have found this dish doesn't freeze all that well............
posted by Lylo to Food & Drink (12 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Do you mean tonight, or last Friday?

Assuming you're talking about tonight, it will still be perfectly good.
posted by palliser at 8:57 PM on April 9, 2010

posted by Lylo at 9:02 PM on April 9, 2010

It will be perfectly safe as long as it is refrigerated.
posted by signalnine at 9:10 PM on April 9, 2010

Yes, you get 3-4 days for casseroles.
posted by ErikaB at 9:42 PM on April 9, 2010 [1 favorite]

My sister made it on Christmas Eve and it was great for the next few days as part of the Parade Of Leftovers, just sealed in tupperware in the fridge.

However I know my sister's recipe also freezes brilliantly--if you post your recipe I can compare it to hers and maybe we can work out how you can adjust yours so in the future, you can freeze portions of it. It's such a rich dish that it's hard to eat for days on end, but it's a real treat to enjoy it a few weeks later.
posted by padraigin at 9:48 PM on April 9, 2010 [1 favorite]

If you took all of those ingredients and didn't cook them, merely keeping them in the refrigerator, they'd all still be perfectly fine on Monday, right?

Cooking isn't like rotting something. It actually tends to produce food that is longer-lasting than its component parts; for example, beef that's been cooked will keep much, much longer than uncooked beef.

You'll be fine. More than fine - it'll be great. Seriously. Freezing has little to do with it; the reason things don't freeze well is because freezing tends to damage delicate textures, not because foods have a particular habit of 'going bad.'
posted by koeselitz at 9:54 PM on April 9, 2010

Thanks padraigin.....Mine is a low fat healthy version I got out of the Weight Watchers cookbook.
It has the following ingredients:
1/2 Lb lean ground beef
2 medium onions
10 oz frozen spinach (thawed/squeezed dry
14.5 oz canned tomatoes drained
nutmeg, cinnamon, pepper
1.5 cups cooked ziti
12 oz evap skim milk
2 large eggs
2 egg whites
1/3 cup crumbled feta

saute beef and onions
stir in spinach, tomatoes, spices and heat through ( drain liquids from pan)
in sauce pan heat milk to just below boil; whisk in eggs/egg whites until frothy
pour over beef mixture
sprinkle with cheese
bake about 45 minutes at 350 ( I bake for 30 mins if planning to freeze and reheat or even to not freeze and reheat).
.......It was great out of the oven but a little watery after freezing/thawing/reheating (in convection oven)
posted by Lylo at 10:01 PM on April 9, 2010 [3 favorites]

clarification............I bake for just 30 minutes if planning to freeze and reheat, or even when I'm not going to FREEZE it, but will be putting it back in the oven to reheat. that way, when reheated it tastes less like overcooked leftovers. If I am serving it right from the oven I cook it 45 minutes.
posted by Lylo at 10:05 PM on April 9, 2010

Hi, just weighing in for the ground beef. If stored well, i.e. good container plus refrigeration ca. +2 C (36 - 38F), can make a week.
posted by Funmonkey1 at 1:15 AM on April 10, 2010

So I have gotten my general leftovers guidelines from my mother, who was the president of our state's school nutrition association for a few years and teaches classes on food safety. She has always told me leftovers are good for a week. After that throw them out. I realize some foods may keep better than others though so ymmv.
posted by kthxbi at 6:27 AM on April 10, 2010

I've eaten week-old Pastitsio from the fridge and I am alive today to tell the tale. It tends to get a bit dried out in the fridge, particularly the sauce. If you've got it well sealed it may not be a problem, or you may want to add a bit of moisture when reheating. The noodles won't have any bite, of course, but it will still be delicious.
posted by Nelson at 8:24 AM on April 10, 2010

Further clarification of my post: Not so much asking "will it still be GOOD" in regards to safety and killing myself or others, but more, will it be good, as in TASTY............
posted by Lylo at 10:26 AM on April 10, 2010

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