HOME > Chowhound > Home Cooking >
What are you cooking today? Share your food adventure
TELL US

Lamb Chops Left Out Overnight!!! Help.

oakjoan Nov 15, 2007 01:21 PM

I left 4 lamb chops on the counter last night. They had been in the fridge for a day and were, therefore, quite cold when I took them out. I was rearranging stuff and didn't notice I hadn't put them back.

Question: Have I lost 4 lamb chops, albeit lowly shoulder chops? It was probably in the mid 50's in the house last night.

If they smell okay should I freeze them for a couple of days?

  1. Sam Fujisaka Nov 15, 2007 01:30 PM

    Cook them now.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Sam Fujisaka
      MMRuth Nov 15, 2007 01:32 PM

      Agreed - if they don't smell odd - I'd cook them.

    2. leanneabe Nov 15, 2007 01:37 PM

      If they smell okay, I'd cook them and then freeze if I needed to. But I wouldn't freeze them after sitting out on the counter all night.

      1. n
        Nyleve Nov 15, 2007 02:16 PM

        Rinse well, pat dry and cook immediately. Braised would be best - which is always a good thing to do with shoulder chops anyway.

        1. g
          genie Nov 15, 2007 03:17 PM

          This is where the lambchop looks at you and says "You've got to ask yourself one question:' Do I feel lucky? Well, do you Joan?" The fact you asked tells me you are in doubt.

          Don't fool around with your / family's health. "When in doubt, throw it out"

          1. n
            NE_Elaine Nov 15, 2007 03:50 PM

            I would cook them and eat them tonight.

            4 Replies
            1. re: NE_Elaine
              oakjoan Nov 15, 2007 04:02 PM

              My leaning was def. toward cooking and eating them.

              One question: How come one shouldn't freeze them if they've sat out overnight? Why is that more dangerous than cooking them tonight?

              1. re: oakjoan
                m
                MaggieRSN Nov 15, 2007 08:17 PM

                joan, I was taught that one should *only* refreeze previously frozen, *uncooked* meat and poulty IF you can trust that the producers/vendors handled the product safely, and IF it was properly thawed (by them or you) in refrigeration that is known to maintain proper temperatures (38 to 40 degrees F, depending on the section, but NEVER above 40).

                The reason is that the meats can begin to cultivate the nasty little germies at any temp above 40 degrees. When you freeze the meat again, you don't kill the bacteria. You just freeze it, suspend it, and it becomes active again when you rethaw the meat.

                I am with genie on this, 100 percent. Never thaw items on the counter (I know it was an accident) and never use items that were left out. A house temperature of even in the 50s is too high. genie asked the right question when she said, "Do you feel lucky?" It's like wearing a seatbelt. You can ride in a car a thousand times without one and not get into an accident, but you never know what will happen that 1001st time...

                When I was growing up back in the Dark Ages, before microwaves, it was fairly common for the moms I knew of (including mine) to thaw dinner on the counter. But in recent years I have specifically read in plural articles theories that, what folks then called the normal childhood "stomach flu" or "stomach bug" may have actually been mild cases of e coli, salmonella, other forms of food poisoning. Young children, the elderly and those with other health issues are especially susceptible, and keep in mind the current public discussion that our food supply may not be "clean" as it used to be. (I don't know whether that's true or not, but I hear the question often enough.)

                I wanted to double check the info I thought I knew before I posted, and I found this, which I thought was useful. Lo and behold, I found out my practice of thawing in the microwave isn't the best choice, either! Live and learn, huh? But here's a Q&A from the USDA--notoriously conservative, I know, but better safe than sorry.

                http://www.fsis.usda.gov/oa/news/2002...

                1. re: MaggieRSN
                  oakjoan Nov 15, 2007 08:29 PM

                  Thanks, this is good info. My lamb chops were not previously frozen. I just took them out of the fridge to rearrange some stuff and forgot them overnight. I'd say they were out about 7 hours.

                  1. re: oakjoan
                    m
                    MaggieRSN Nov 16, 2007 08:28 AM

                    Oops; I knew that, joan ;-). It's just by the time I finished pondering the question, I'd forgotten you'd said that! Sorry.

            2. jfood Nov 16, 2007 03:32 AM

              Jfood would throw them out. Whether they smelled or not they were out of the fridge for the entire night. why take the chance for a couple of chops? Jfoods cut-off is 2-3 hours and overnight is way over that standard.

              1. luckyfatima Nov 16, 2007 09:05 AM

                i'd say they're fine, specially since u say your house was cool.

                1. Caroline1 Nov 19, 2007 03:52 AM

                  The obvious first question is, how long is "overnight?" Do you go to bed right after the five o'clock news and get up at noon? Then how cold were they when you found them?

                  In any case, I would smell them first. If they smell okay, than I would don some rubber gloves, scrub them down with salt, then rinse them clear, then braise them or (if they're of reasonable thickness) cut them in chunks and make lamb stew.

                  And since you asked on the 15th, this is obviusly advice for the next time!

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: Caroline1
                    b
                    bruce in oakton Nov 19, 2007 06:09 AM

                    cook them and eat them - compare the length of time that people been eating meat with the period that the refrigerator has become a commonly owned item. I'd be wary of pork or chicken but lamb's ok.

                    I always defrost on the counter, overnight. have done for thirty years and never had a problem. One of the things I miss most in the US is properly 'hung' game - a well matured pheasant is something I long for, and you can't achieve THAT in the fridge. Americans appear to have become so squeamish that they dislike being reminded of the origin of their neatly packaged cuts of meat and loath the thought of eating what they euphemistically call 'variety meats' .

                  Show Hidden Posts