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Quick question - How long would an open, refrigerated, ziplocked can of chipotle peppers last?

esquimeaux Feb 21, 2011 11:29 AM

I kept meaning to puree and freeze.... but maybe they're still okay? Do those go bad easily?

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    sparkareno RE: esquimeaux Feb 21, 2011 11:51 AM

    I think they are usually packed in an adobo sauce which should have vinegar so I would imagine they would last a while. Why do you need to puree? I just dump the whole can in a zip lock freezer bag & freeze. Then I break off what i need while still frozen. Sometimes I grate the frozen chipotles (microplane) into what I am making --good distribution without chopping.

    2 Replies
    1. re: sparkareno
      lemons RE: sparkareno Feb 21, 2011 11:59 AM

      Ditto that.

      1. re: sparkareno
        goodhealthgourmet RE: sparkareno Feb 21, 2011 12:23 PM

        i puree the contents before freezing - i find it allows for the best distribution of heat & flavor when i'm using it from the frozen state. occasionally i'll also pour the puree into mini ice cube trays and make frozen "chips" out of it for tossing into hot preparations.

        BTW, i thought i was being so original/resourceful the first time i discovered how handy it was to grate it when working with the frozen stuff...apparently not so much ;)

      2. paulj RE: esquimeaux Feb 21, 2011 12:04 PM

        I'd suggest transferring them to a small jar. Things usually keep better that way; storing in an open can isn't the best. Anyways, in a jar it keeps a long time.

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          esquimeaux RE: esquimeaux Feb 21, 2011 01:50 PM

          Thanks for the answers everyone! They seem like the type of thing to last a while. I'll freeze them tonight. And yes, I was gonna puree so it would be more... homogenous. But probably I'm just gonna freeze them whole now, with that grater trick.

          1 Reply
          1. re: esquimeaux
            Pia RE: esquimeaux Feb 21, 2011 02:07 PM

            You could also freeze individual cubes in ice cube trays.

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            julesrules RE: esquimeaux Feb 21, 2011 03:27 PM

            I don't bother freezing, because in a glass jar they last indefinitely. Even in a can I don't think they'd go bad exactly, I'd be more worried about leaching bpa or what-not from the can.

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              pine time RE: esquimeaux Feb 22, 2011 09:19 AM

              I've kept 'em in a sealed glass jar for at least a month with no repercussions. Not sure how much longer they'd be safe. Like the idea of freezing--does it change the texture, tho?

              1 Reply
              1. re: pine time
                POAndrea RE: pine time Feb 22, 2011 10:52 AM

                I haven't noticed any change in texture. I used to wrap each little pepper, with a healthy serving of sauce, in plastic wrap and freeze, but then I found that dumping them in the bottom of a freezer bag, rolling up, and freezing works much better. Then when I want some, I just take the roll out and, while still frozen, shave off much as I need. I do the same thing with tomato paste.

              2. Will Owen RE: esquimeaux Feb 22, 2011 03:53 PM

                Judging from my own experience, they are immortal. You could probably leave them out in the driveway for a year or two and notice no changes at all, unless you left the lid off and bugs and twigs and stuff got in. I do take mine out of the can in case the stuff starts eating through the metal, but they don't rot, they don't mold, they don't change flavor or anything in a jar.

                3 Replies
                1. re: Will Owen
                  Ruth Lafler RE: Will Owen Feb 22, 2011 04:03 PM

                  Yup. You should never store anything in an open can, but if you take them out of the can and put them in a small jar, they'll last forever. However, I have a whole bunch of three-ounce plastic containers (I bought a package I think had10 at Ikea), and I usually divide them into small batches and pop them in the freezer.

                  1. re: Will Owen
                    itaunas RE: Will Owen Feb 22, 2011 04:04 PM

                    Assuming you trust the lining of the can one short term solution for storing is also to cover them with a bit of oil (and clean the sides of the can with a bit of water and vinegar). That isn't going to save you from spoilage organisms which can survive anaerobic conditions and poorly lined cans, but generally chipotles are packaged with enough vinegar or citric acid that they won't be favorable for much in a reasonably effective fridge and the cans seem to be improving. I do this more commonly with tomato paste than chipotles, but I use both at a reasonable enough clip that its fairly convenient for me especially since I have plenty of trouble managing the more expensive items in my freezer. (And buying cans, you can get good quality in both for less than tubes or other alternatives.)

                    1. re: itaunas
                      pine time RE: itaunas Feb 25, 2011 05:15 AM

                      An open can doesn't last long enough in our household to eat through the metal, but I do like Will's driveway storage idea! :) I buy at least a can a week.

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                    Erika L RE: esquimeaux Feb 23, 2011 09:35 AM

                    Puree the contents of the can, sauce and all, then scrape into a clean glass jar with a tight-fitting lid and top with a thin film of oil. One heaping teaspoonful is about equal to one minced pepper. Keep adding a film of oil every time you remove some. I've been working my way through a jar for at least six months, no change in flavor, no mold, no ooglie booglies.

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: Erika L
                      Will Owen RE: Erika L Feb 23, 2011 12:49 PM

                      That is a good and sensible suggestion. I'd like to add that puréed chipotle in adobo is a brilliant ingredient for a good zippy barbecue sauce. One pepper's worth plus ketchup and some Pick-A-Peppa beats just about any sauce you can buy, in my books. Honey or molasses optional.

                      1. re: Will Owen
                        paulj RE: Will Owen Feb 23, 2011 03:47 PM

                        They even sell pureed chipotle en adobo in squeeze bottle that you can squirt directly onto your burger.

                        1. re: Will Owen
                          pine time RE: Will Owen Feb 25, 2011 05:17 AM

                          That's the same method I use to keep oil marinated sun-dried tomatoes viable for ages--just keep adding a bit of oil to keep 'em covered.

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                        Whats_For_Dinner RE: esquimeaux Feb 25, 2011 04:20 PM

                        I have had them go moldy in the fridge after several months in a separate container, but that was only one time, and I hadn't had a problem before or since. Unless you're going to take years to go through a can, no problem.

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