HOME > Chowhound > General Topics >
What are you cooking today? Share your food adventure

Tamales still safe to eat?

onrushpam Dec 29, 2008 11:01 AM

My sister brought some tamales from TX (a friend of hers made them). We forgot they were in the fridge! I know they were made more than a week ago... probably on the 20th or 21st. They've been in the fridge, but not frozen. Are they still edible? They look/smell okay. I'd hate to pitch them, but am a bit fearful...

  1. goodhealthgourmet Dec 29, 2008 11:26 AM

    you didn't say what variety they are, but i'm assuming they contain beef or pork, so i'd toss them. 5 days is really as long as you can safely refrigerate cooked meat.

    1 Reply
    1. re: goodhealthgourmet
      bubbles4me Dec 29, 2008 11:32 AM

      Total bummer but I would probably chuck them too

    2. The Oracle Dec 29, 2008 03:28 PM

      I ate a pork tamale that was made on the 21st (and has been in the fridge) this morning for b'fast and I'm fine 8 hours later. I knew I was pushing it but it was too precious to toss. Somehow I justified that heating it a little extra would kill anything in it... fuzzy logic and not very smart from a health perspective, I know.

      If yours had a lot of unrefrigerated transit time in travel, I'd be a lot more wary.

      2 Replies
      1. re: The Oracle
        onrushpam Dec 29, 2008 04:01 PM

        I'm steaming them now... They were packed in ice in transit and then in the coldest part of my fridge (nearly frozen when I took them out). They smelled wonderful. So, we decided to chance it.

        1. re: onrushpam
          Zeldog Dec 29, 2008 06:44 PM

          Good move. It would have been a shame to toss out some perfectly good tamales. Lots of folks tend to forget that whatever bacteria might grow on your food, cooking kills them off, and even in the worst case of botulina, degrades the toxin as well. Now, some bugs will still make your food taste bad, but you'll probably see a lovely bloom of mold by that point. There simply are not that many really nasty airborne bacteria floating around, which is one reason why we are not all dead already. Wash your hands frequently. Don't chop lettuce for your salad on the same board you just used to cut up that chicken. Heat leftovers thoroughly (don't just warm them up). And enjoy.

      Show Hidden Posts