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Read this before cleaning your refrigerator for the holidays



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This story is part of Holiday Survival Guide 2019 and contains tips for the optimal organization of the holiday season.

You are in full cleaning mode just before the holidays. Time to clean your shower head wipe the house and free some space in your fridge to make room for your entire vacation dinner.

That means throwing away the turkey residue you've held on to since Thanksgiving, checking if the milk still smells of milk, and throwing the suspicious container of whatever that was. Fortunately, we have tips to let you know that it's time to throw certain foods on the side of the road.

For example, you are probably careful with the eggs that were in your refrigerator with the October expiration date. But did you know you can do an egg test to see if they're still okay to eat? Read on for more tips on how to tell if your food is edible or if it's time to say goodbye.

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Alina Bradford / CNET

There are remnants – and they survived their greeting.

If you have leftovers in your refrigerator for more than four days, it's time to throw them out for safety reasons. The Mayo Clinic says that after four days, the risk of harmful bacteria increases. Nobody needs food poisoning during the holidays.

However, if your leftovers are tightly packed in a substantial amount, like a liter of soup, you can safely freeze them for later – just make sure it's not too late.

If it is moldy, it has to go

This is an obvious one. If anything in your fridge infects mold, you need to get rid of it – yes, this includes cheese and fruit. If only some fruits like raspberries have mold, you can still eat the moldy fruits in the container. Rinse them thoroughly and examine them.

You could cut off the moldy cheese pieces if there is enough to save, but make sure you leave a margin so deep that the shape is gone. Clean the knife between cuts to prevent spores from spreading.

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If your food develops mold, has a foul odor or feels slimy, throw it away.


Alina Bradford / CNET

It smells foul.

If you have opened foods such as sausages and sausages in the refrigerator, you should probably throw them away after four days. Or you cook them in a new dish that can extend their lives. Longer and they tend to let off a foul smell, indicating that they have gone bad.

It has a slimy consistency.

Your food should never be slimy – this applies to meat, vegetables and salads, especially packaged vegetables. Delicatessen is a repeat offender here. The mucus is due to bacteria that have ingested the food. If you open the packaging and notice that the food has a slimy film, put it in the compost immediately.

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If your product looks slimy, do not eat it.


Taylor Martin / CNET

Perform the egg test.

If you have eggs with a best before date of more than a month, you can easily determine whether they are still good to eat without breaking them open.

You have to fill a deep bowl with water and put one egg after the other in the bowl. If the egg falls directly on the floor, it is still very fresh. If it falls on the floor but is standing, it is still good to eat, but you should eat it sooner rather than later. If it swims, it's time to throw it away and buy new eggs.

If they are standing, you probably want to use them before they go bad. In these egg recipes you will find things that you can prepare for dinner and brunch.

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Don't let your balls go bad.


Alina Bradford / CNET

Pantry Items You Should Now Throw Away

  • Canned Food with Many or Deep Bulges: If you find that your canned food has a deep bulge, especially on the side, avoid it. Small dents on the metal band at the top or bottom of the can can be attributed to superficial transport or storage damage. With deep depression, however, there is concern that the foods inside are affected by botulism, which, according to the CDC, is a serious illness caused by a poison that attacks the nerves of the body.
  • Potatoes that smell bad: If your potato sprouts, it is still good to eat. But if it smells different than earthy, it's probably gone bad. Also look for potatoes that are leaking – that is, they rot.
  • Moldy Bread: If your bread is moldy, don't try to keep it. Just throw it away.

Need more tips on cleaning up for the holidays? Here you can find out when flour, sugar and other baking ingredients expire and how to clean your shower head before holiday guests arrive .

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