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Palm Oil way past sell by date

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We're making a pie, so we remembered we have Palm Kernal Oil (as an organic, non-hydrogenated vegetable shortening) in the fridge. Looks okay, doesn't smell. But the sell by date is 1/9/05 - i.e. 6 months ago!

Will we die if we use it?

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  1. If it doesn't stink, that means it's not oxidized, which is about the only really bad thing that can happen to any fat. When they get rank, that's a sign their little atoms are starting to link up in long chains and turn indigestible on you.

    Aside from their unfortunate tendency to clump up in our bloodstreams and add to one's personal diameter, fats are pretty benign substances, as long as they're free of foreign toxins (such as pesticides). I don't think there are any pathogens that grow in them; any bacteria pretty much have to find some sugars or starches or other water-solubles to get a leg up. That's one good reason to buy dry-cured bacon...or maybe that's just my excuse.

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    1. re: Will Owen

      SELL BY dates are strictly a quality assurance issue decided by the manufacturer. Expiration dates means the product is most likely inedible. As long as the oil doesn't smell or taste rancid, you should be fine.