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How long does tahini last?

krissywats Sep 28, 2006 07:21 PM

Or peanut butter or almond butter, for that matter.

I've had tahini, natural peanut butter and almond butter in my fridge for months and all seem to be fine. With as much protein as they are loaded with, why don't they seem to go bad? Do they ever turn rancid?

I made the tahini into a tahini dip today and it tastes great...

Thanks in advance!

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  1. m
    MikeG RE: krissywats Sep 28, 2006 11:37 PM

    Yes, they will eventually go rancid but I'm not going to say publicly how long I've left them in the fridge to discover the fact. Suffice to say, it's a LONG time, at least for peanut butter and tahini - don't know if other nut butters are more sensitive.

    Good question why they don't get moldy, but the very low moisture content would be a big factor.

    1. pikawicca RE: krissywats Sep 28, 2006 11:43 PM

      I don't refrigerate tahini (it turns into cement), and it seems to last about 6 months or so.

      1 Reply
      1. re: pikawicca
        krissywats RE: pikawicca Sep 28, 2006 11:56 PM

        interesting - i haven't had the cement problem in the fridge (maybe it's the brand?) and I've had it longer than 6 months for sure.

        I do wonder why it takes so long to go bad....

      2. m
        MikeG RE: krissywats Sep 29, 2006 02:41 AM

        Well, there is protein, and there is fat, but there's very little moisture and bacteria or mold wouldn't be at all mobile in such a thick substrate. Life needs water, and in nut butters, there isn't much water, even though they're "liquidy" and what water is there is largely emulsified and evenly distributed. Plus it's cold in the fridge.

        I'm sure if you left either sitting open on the counter for a week without touching or removing the surface layer, something would start to grow. Certainly the tahini, which actually spoils pretty quickly once it's mixed with water to make sauce, even with added acidity from lemon.

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          MikeG RE: krissywats Sep 29, 2006 02:45 AM

          The tahini sauce made me think, the same thing happena with peanut butter when it's diluted. Sauce for Americanized cold sesame noodles spoils after not very long, even in the fridge, even with all that soy sauce and vinegar.

          1. m
            MikeG RE: krissywats Sep 29, 2006 03:05 AM

            (Sorry to hijack your thread, kw!)

            Actually, that's true for me, at a ME place on 9th Ave of no particular nationality (it's long gone, but was the Lemon Tree Cafe.)

            It was actually pretty obvious but (insert long story) I ate some/too much of it anyway and was 150% keeled over within a few hours rather than usual longer incubation period. :( If hadn't had another (milder) case before, I'd have thought my appendix had burst or something, it was that bad. I've never had a problem before or since (and this was like 15 years ago), so fortunately it didn't spook me about the stuff, but it's obviously not pathogen resistant in all forms. At home, I don't think the sauce tastes good after a couple of days, it starts to get sour, and if I forget it for a week, it's pretty rank when I toss it...

            1 Reply
            1. re: MikeG
              krissywats RE: MikeG Sep 29, 2006 03:09 AM

              Lol, no prob on the hijack. I appreciate the info. That makes sense. And your info makes me know that my tahini, yogurt, lemon mix is probably not goign to last that long in the fridge. Thanks for the heads-up!!

            2. m
              MikeG RE: krissywats Sep 29, 2006 03:18 AM

              Hmm.. There *was* another post there when I replied but I guess it fell foul of the anecdotal-report-about-existing-restaurant rule. But I didn't start the food poisoning tangent anyway.;)

              The yogurt might actually help a little by outcompeting pathogens (pure speculation alert), but no, I wouldn't count on it for a week or anything.

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