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Subject: THIS doofus even manages to screw up mashed potatos
Newsgroups: rec.food.cooking

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From: dinahy[at]aol.com (DINAH Y)
Date: 1 Mar 1999 04:12:26 GMT
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Yes, it's true...i can't seem make a decent batch of mashed potatoes!
My problem isn't what you might be thinking....

My mashed potatoes come out perfect on the first day. 

It's the leftovers that I occasionally seem to have the problem with. In the
past I've made huge quantities (approx 4qts at a time) with the intention of
having lots of yummy leftovers for quick snacks. However, I sometimes find that
the remaining mashed potatoes have gone completely sour. Really bummed me out
to have to toss huge amounts away! 

As I said this only happens on occasion, and I can't figure out what I'm doing
differently. I'm careful to refrigerate the leftovers as soon as possible and
judging from the recipes I've seen, I'm not using any unusual ingredients -
idaho potatoes, salted butter, heavy cream, salt, paprika, sometimes I'll throw
in grated cheese. The ingredients I do use are all fresh (usually bought that
day). One thing I've noticed (that I do not currently do) is that some recipes
call for the milk or cream to be heated before mixing into the potatoes - but
not all recipes specify this extra step. 

I don't usually wait for the butter and cream to reach room temperature before
I use them - could that lead to the spoiling?
Should mashed potatoes be allowed to cool to room temperature before placing
them in a refrigerator? Does anyone know something obscure about heavy cream
and paprika that I'm unaware of?

please help me find a clue!

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From: Robert Keereweer <au517[at]chebucto.ns.ca>
Date: Mon, 1 Mar 1999 00:30:35 -0400
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	I would suggest to let them cool to room temperature before
refigeration, so that the center of the mass does not stay at the danger
zone, or temperature for an extended period of time.

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From: totototo+rcfdck[at]mail.pacificcoast.net (Rodger Whitlock)
Date: Tue, 02 Mar 1999 03:08:40 GMT
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Robert Keereweer wrote:
>	I would suggest to let them cool to room temperature before
>refigeration, so that the center of the mass does not stay at the danger
>zone, or temperature for an extended period of time.

No; they will chill faster the sooner they go into the fridge. What
you *can* do to spead up chilling is spread the food out in a thinnish
layer. You can always pack it together once it's cold.

Even the center.

Going back to the original question, it might interest r.f.c.ers that
there's been a lively thread in sci.chem about someone getting food
poisoning after eating a reheated mushroom rissole. When I read in the
description of the sour mashed potatoes "heavy cream" it rang a bell.
The bad rissole also had cream in it.

Is there something about cream + (rice or spuds) that lends itself to
fast bacterial growth?

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From: Kaari Jae <kaari[at]hem1.passagen.se>
Date: 2 Mar 1999 05:50:30 GMT
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Rodger Whitlock wrote:
> Is there something about cream + (rice or spuds) that lends itself to
> fast bacterial growth?

Wouldn't know anything about what cream might do to spoil mashed
potatoes. Don't actually think it contains anything that could spoil the
potatoes. BUT, what does spoil potatoes fast is to keep them warm i.e.
keep them in a sort of ready to eat temperature for a few hours after
they're ready. 

But whatever else it is that causes the fast way to spoilage, it could
also be the potatoes themselves. There is a Finnish Potato casserole
that is made of mashed potatoes mixed with some flour, left on the
countertop to ferment which gives the potato casserole a sweet taste
(contrary what one would think). So I would think that if this
fermentation process is combined with other "food cultures" like cream
or milk or butter that have been around a while in room temperature, the
mashed potatoes could end up bad instead of fermenting.

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From: cjfuller[at]mindspring.com (Cindy J. Fuller)
Date: Tue, 02 Mar 1999 07:33:41 -0500
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Rodger Whitlock wrote:
>Is there something about cream + (rice or spuds) that lends itself to
>fast bacterial growth?

Bacteria and other bugs thrive in foods with relatively neutral pH, some
carbohydrates for energy, and protein.  Mashed potatoes with cream would
fit the bill perfectly.  It's also possible that some of the fat added to
the potatoes (butter or margarine, cream) is going rancid.

I don't usually make up more mashed potatoes than we'll eat at one time or
on the following day.  To me, they just don't have the same taste and
texture after sitting in the fridge for a time.

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From: jlr54[at]pipeline.com (Julia)
Date: Wed, 03 Mar 1999 09:16:51 GMT
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could always be something other than your ingredients causing it to
sour. Cutting board, wooden spoon? Are you storing it in the same type
container each time?


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