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  #1  
Old 12-12-2012, 07:06 PM
taskmgr.exe taskmgr.exe is offline
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Is eating cayenne pepper past the expiration date any harmful?

It's 1,5 year past the expiration date. For example, what If I drink the soup with a lot of cayenne pepper past the expiration date added?
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  #2  
Old 12-12-2012, 07:27 PM
Mister Rik Mister Rik is offline
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Are you talking about dry, ground cayenne pepper? If so, then the answer is "no". I suspect the date is a "best by" date, not an expiration date per se. Spices lose their potency/flavor over time, so they're often labeled with a "best by/use by" date simply because they won't taste the same after a while.

If you're talking about something else, then I'd need more information.
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  #3  
Old 12-12-2012, 07:31 PM
Qwakkeddup Qwakkeddup is offline
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The volatile oils in the seasoning may have evaporated out leaving the powdered seasoning with little flavor, or an altered flavor that may not taste too good.
If it is dry and not caked the cayenne pepper should be fine to eat, it just may not be as strong or as flavorful as expected.

Ninja strikes as I correct so many misteaks.

Last edited by Qwakkeddup; 12-12-2012 at 07:34 PM..
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  #4  
Old 12-12-2012, 07:47 PM
taskmgr.exe taskmgr.exe is offline
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Thank you for answers. Really appreciated.

It was like that:
http://www.masterfoods.com.au/Images...ennePepper.jpg

Last edited by taskmgr.exe; 12-12-2012 at 07:47 PM..
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  #5  
Old 12-12-2012, 08:30 PM
Duckster Duckster is offline
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"Open Dating" (use of a calendar date as opposed to a code) on a food product is a date stamped on a product's package to help the store determine how long to display the product for sale. It can also help the purchaser to know the time limit to purchase or use the product at its best quality. It is not a safety date.
(Bolding mine.) http://www.fsis.usda.gov/Fact_Sheets...roduct_Dating/

Other than what might be required under federal and/or state laws for selected food items, food expiration dates are marketing tools.

Last edited by Duckster; 12-12-2012 at 08:30 PM..
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  #6  
Old 12-12-2012, 08:37 PM
Mister Rik Mister Rik is offline
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Originally Posted by Duckster View Post
Other than what might be required under federal and/or state laws for selected food items, food expiration dates are marketing tools.
Judging by how some of the serving staff act about milk where I work, I know a lot of people don't get the difference between a "sell by" date and an "expiration date", and I'll bet that's what a lot of food companies count on.
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  #7  
Old 12-12-2012, 09:08 PM
wheresmymind wheresmymind is offline
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For the love of God, it's fine. It could be 2 decades past its expiration date and it would be fine.
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  #8  
Old 12-13-2012, 03:53 AM
andrewbub andrewbub is offline
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Originally Posted by wheresmymind View Post
For the love of God, it's fine. It could be 2 decades past its expiration date and it would be fine.
if you have cayenne pepper that old, i suggest throwing away all your spices and starting over as you need them.
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  #9  
Old 12-13-2012, 07:39 AM
Chefguy Chefguy is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wheresmymind View Post
For the love of God, it's fine. It could be 2 decades past its expiration date and it would be fine.
Well, it wouldn't be harmful, but there would be little potency left after two decades.
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  #10  
Old 12-13-2012, 08:20 AM
Darth Panda Darth Panda is offline
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Would it be theoretically possible for the oils in the spice to undergo rancidifcation?

Not that it's something I would be particularly (or at all) worried about.
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  #11  
Old 12-13-2012, 09:26 AM
Mr Downtown Mr Downtown is offline
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In my family we joke about the stuff in the spice cabinet that only gets used once a year, at Christmas. Some of it has addresses with zone numbers rather than ZIP codes.
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  #12  
Old 12-13-2012, 10:13 AM
Mister Rik Mister Rik is offline
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Originally Posted by Mr Downtown View Post
In my family we joke about the stuff in the spice cabinet that only gets used once a year, at Christmas. Some of it has addresses with zone numbers rather than ZIP codes.
When I worked in the kitchen of the local homeless shelter between 1996 and 2004, we occasionally received donations from people who had recently died. Usually this was an elderly person, and their families would clean out their cupboards and bring it all to us. Sometimes, among the canned/boxed food, we'd find stuff that had no UPC symbol. That is, stuff that had been sitting in the deceased's cupboards since the early-/mid-1970s.
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  #13  
Old 12-13-2012, 10:21 AM
Colophon Colophon is offline
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Originally Posted by Darth Panda View Post
Would it be theoretically possible for the oils in the spice to undergo rancidifcation?

Not that it's something I would be particularly (or at all) worried about.
Rancid oils aren't generally toxic - rancidification is a chemical process, not a biological one, and the results just taste nasty.

I think the biggest danger to the OP's health is if the pepper has lost its flavour and his dining companions throw the bland soup over him.
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  #14  
Old 12-13-2012, 10:33 AM
Chefguy Chefguy is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mister Rik View Post
When I worked in the kitchen of the local homeless shelter between 1996 and 2004, we occasionally received donations from people who had recently died. Usually this was an elderly person, and their families would clean out their cupboards and bring it all to us. Sometimes, among the canned/boxed food, we'd find stuff that had no UPC symbol. That is, stuff that had been sitting in the deceased's cupboards since the early-/mid-1970s.
When I visited my son and his family a couple of years ago, I noticed a spice rack on the counter; one of those that swivels on its base and has maybe a dozen spices in bottles. They had gotten it for their wedding 12 years earlier. The spices and herbs had all faded to a uniform brownish gray, and many had solidified in the jars. I took the liberty of dumping them all out.
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  #15  
Old 12-13-2012, 10:44 AM
CC CC is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chefguy View Post
When I visited my son and his family a couple of years ago, I noticed a spice rack on the counter; one of those that swivels on its base and has maybe a dozen spices in bottles. They had gotten it for their wedding 12 years earlier. The spices and herbs had all faded to a uniform brownish gray, and many had solidified in the jars. I took the liberty of dumping them all out.
Presumably, they thanked you for your thoughtfulness. Maybe you should have also gone through their closets to toss away clothes that were no longer in fashion. If I had in-laws and they did something like that, I'd be thinking, "Why, I ought to pound you!"
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  #16  
Old 12-13-2012, 10:51 AM
johnpost johnpost is offline
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i've got some Ferdinand Magellan brand spices. should i get some fresher ones?
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  #17  
Old 12-13-2012, 01:16 PM
dracoi dracoi is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Qwakkeddup View Post
The volatile oils in the seasoning may have evaporated out leaving the powdered seasoning with little flavor, or an altered flavor that may not taste too good.
If it is dry and not caked the cayenne pepper should be fine to eat, it just may not be as strong or as flavorful as expected.
I just thought I'd echo this advice. As long as food stays dry, it's very unlikely to be unhealthy for you regardless of its age. It might taste awful, but all forms of life - and the enzymes in them - require moisture to be active. So you won't have bacteria, mold, enzymatic decomposition, etc. without some moisture.

Caking is a sign that a powdered ingredient has been wet in the past, even if it is dry currently. If it has ever been wet, you should consider it suspect.
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  #18  
Old 12-13-2012, 01:29 PM
snowthx snowthx is offline
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Originally Posted by dracoi View Post
Caking is a sign that a powdered ingredient has been wet in the past, even if it is dry currently. If it has ever been wet, you should consider it suspect.
And, powdered spices need not be directly exposed to water from your sink - if you shake the jar over a boiling pot (say, of soup), water vapor can enter the container and cause caking that way, too.
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  #19  
Old 12-13-2012, 04:42 PM
wheresmymind wheresmymind is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chefguy View Post
When I visited my son and his family a couple of years ago, I noticed a spice rack on the counter; one of those that swivels on its base and has maybe a dozen spices in bottles. They had gotten it for their wedding 12 years earlier. The spices and herbs had all faded to a uniform brownish gray, and many had solidified in the jars. I took the liberty of dumping them all out.
What CC said.

If you then refilled the rack with new spices, you're awesome. If not, you're a horrible meddling in-law!
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  #20  
Old 12-13-2012, 06:54 PM
Chefguy Chefguy is offline
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Originally Posted by wheresmymind View Post
What CC said.

If you then refilled the rack with new spices, you're awesome. If not, you're a horrible meddling in-law!
I refilled most of them. They're barely able to use salt without fucking it up, so I'm sure whatever I put in the jars will still be there in 20 years.
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  #21  
Old 12-14-2012, 11:31 AM
dracoi dracoi is offline
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Originally Posted by Chefguy View Post
I refilled most of them. They're barely able to use salt without fucking it up, so I'm sure whatever I put in the jars will still be there in 20 years.
Even so... I've gotta second what the others have said. Doing that in my house would make me seriously question whether I ever want you back. You'd find me recommending that we meet at restaurants and parks. (In case anyone thinks I'm joking, my two brothers are my only blood relatives who have ever been in my house. Of course, I do have much better reasons than spice-tampering for keeping them away.)
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  #22  
Old 12-14-2012, 12:08 PM
Chefguy Chefguy is offline
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Originally Posted by dracoi View Post
Even so... I've gotta second what the others have said. Doing that in my house would make me seriously question whether I ever want you back. You'd find me recommending that we meet at restaurants and parks. (In case anyone thinks I'm joking, my two brothers are my only blood relatives who have ever been in my house. Of course, I do have much better reasons than spice-tampering for keeping them away.)
Yeah, I'm a bad person all around, apparently.
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  #23  
Old 12-14-2012, 12:21 PM
Capt Kirk Capt Kirk is offline
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Originally Posted by Chefguy View Post
Yeah, I'm a bad person all around, apparently.
OTOH you are welcome to stealth re spice my house any day, some high quality saffron would be especially appreciated.

Capt
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  #24  
Old 12-14-2012, 12:41 PM
Stormcrow Stormcrow is offline
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Originally Posted by wheresmymind View Post
For the love of God, it's fine. It could be 2 decades past its expiration date and it would be fine.
I still have some spices in my kitchen that my mom gave me when I got my first apartment in college.

I'm 46.
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  #25  
Old 12-14-2012, 03:23 PM
Chefguy Chefguy is offline
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Originally Posted by Capt Kirk View Post
OTOH you are welcome to stealth re spice my house any day, some high quality saffron would be especially appreciated.

Capt
I just priced that at a local spice shop. It was something like $12/oz for Spanish.

By the way, I actually did run the spice dumping past my DIL prior to doing it. She just shrugged, having no idea what the stuff was used for. This was in conjunction with my teaching her how to prepare a turkey dinner. As mentioned, she's a complete loss in a kitchen.
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  #26  
Old 12-14-2012, 03:34 PM
gnoitall gnoitall is offline
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Originally Posted by Chefguy View Post
I just priced that at a local spice shop. It was something like $12/oz for Spanish.

By the way, I actually did run the spice dumping past my DIL prior to doing it. She just shrugged, having no idea what the stuff was used for. This was in conjunction with my teaching her how to prepare a turkey dinner. As mentioned, she's a complete loss in a kitchen.
Ah. You neglected to mention "with the permission of the homeowners". That makes a smidge of difference.
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  #27  
Old 12-14-2012, 03:35 PM
purplehorseshoe purplehorseshoe is offline
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OK, OK, if you asked first, that's different.

Quote:
Originally Posted by snowthx View Post
And, powdered spices need not be directly exposed to water from your sink - if you shake the jar over a boiling pot (say, of soup), water vapor can enter the container and cause caking that way, too.
Which is why I always shake it out into my palm first. Plus, it prevents the whole OOPS! thing when the top falls into the boiling soup and a whole jarful falls out.* Except for curry powder. I made some kick-ass squash soup a few weeks ago and could still smell the curry on my palm days later. Not a bad smell, but still ...




* True story, from college (of course!). Friend was making pasta sauce, and the above happened with black pepper. A mound of pepper was sitting atop the sauce. I though he would spoon some out or something, but he just shrugged and stirred it all in. "I like pepper!" he said. "Not that much," we answered.

He had one bite. The remainder went into the trash.
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  #28  
Old 12-14-2012, 03:44 PM
Kimballkid Kimballkid is offline
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Not that Chefguy needs defending, but I would presume his son knows he's a Chefguy and should know better than to keep old crappy spices and stuff around.
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  #29  
Old 12-14-2012, 04:51 PM
Chefguy Chefguy is offline
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Originally Posted by Kimballkid View Post
Not that Chefguy needs defending, but I would presume his son knows he's a Chefguy and should know better than to keep old crappy spices and stuff around.
He's a better cook than his wife by far, but neither of them have the time or interest in doing much. Their refrigerator always looks like a desert wasteland, and the freezer contains prepared foods pretty much exclusively. Do I nag them about proper nutrition? Nope, none of my bidness. But when I'm visiting, I do pretty much all the cooking. It's a matter of self preservation.
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