pierino is a trusted source on General Cooking and Tough Love.
If it was covered it's most likely okay. But see this discussion http://www.food52.com/hotline...
This topic should be on a Food52 FAQ
Agree with Pierino. If your kitchen/house gets cooler in the evening and overnight (depending on where you live) than it should be fine to consume the next day (but no more than that).
Depends. Tomato sauce? Probably okay. Creamy or eggy sauce? Toss it.
Chris is a trusted source on General Cooking
I have known Europeans who wouldn't dream of putting leftover tomato-sauced pasta into the refrigerator. Covered and in the pantry for someone's lucky lunch the next day.
I'd toss it. live to fight another day.
When in doubt, throw it out!
As with the eggs, there are two issues of concern: Deterioration of quality and bacterial growth. Your nose probably knows the first answer.
USDA guidelines say throw it out. Covered or not, you must assume the pot is now a cesspool of bacteria. At room temperature, bacteria multiply rapidly. Under optimal conditions, they can double in quantity every 20 minutes. A single bacterium can become 10's of millions by morning.
That said, here's what Harold McGee has to say about bending the rules:
Will a proper reheating kill enough bacteria so you won't get wish-you-were-dead sick? Probably.
And of course, back to this, one of my biggest complaints about American cooking is that so much food is thrown away and wasted because people are careless about it. There's an Italian proverb, "you can only enter heaven after you've swept up every bread crumb you've wasted with your eyelashes".
Oh, please. Everyone before refrigeration ate leftovers. If eating pasta the next day was toxic none of us would be here because all our ancesters would have died off before the modern refrigerator - as long as there is no raw eggs or meat, go for it
Since refrigeration was invented, the life expectancy has risen quite a bit.The fact is that moist environment, room temp over night is where bacteria thrive. Unless the pasta is drenched in an acidic tomato sauce (which I would toss anyway), bacteria is thriving. I think everyone agrees that some Americans do throw out too much food. However, the answer here is to try not to leave certain foods out over night in the future, and not to eat food that will make you sick so you can go to heaven.
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