Friday, April 14, 2017

If You Are What You Eat... I Should Live Forever

We all know that there are way too many chemicals and preservatives in most prepared foods. And, because of this, I do tend to make a lot of things from (relative) scratch.

But there are a lot of recipes that call for ingredients that would be a pain in the tuchus to self-source, so - as we all do - I go for the package. And when the recipe actually says "1/2 cup of canned cherry pie filling" I'm not exactly going to go out and make my own cherry pie filling just to use 1/2 cup of it in a Bundt cake.

(Does everyone remember what I'm referring to at this point? The cherry pie filling was one of the layers in the filling for the Cherry Cheesecake Chocolate Bundt cake.)

Of course, using only a small amount, I was faced with a dilemma: keep the rest or throw it out?

I decided to think positive and keep it - figuring I could whip up something later that would use it. That was a little over six weeks ago. (The post went up on March 10th, but I made the Bundt on February 19th. As a refresher, it's now APRIL.)

Last weekend, I reached into the fridge, where the open can was only partially sealed, covered by the mostly cut out metal lid. I was happy to see that the can does say you can refrigerate it after the can is opened - though it does also recommend use within 10 days (though I'm not sure why).

The date on the lid won't come around for two years:
So I figured I was safe to use them last weekend when I was making biscuits and decided to make a kind of turnover/hand pie thing. (I did not take photos of this, because... well... I ate it. If you like the idea of it, let me know and I can see about doing it again.)

I won't lie - I was a bit nervous about opening the lid to see what was going on inside the can. After all... six weeks is a long time for a fruit of any kind to not go way off.

I had no reason to worry. In fact, the worst thing was that the filling around the edges of the can had started to get a tad rubbery (like old Jell-o).

Okay, that's a lie. The worst thing was the actual flavor of the cherry pie filling. I don't think I'd tasted it before putting it into the cake - and it worked well next to the cream cheese and all - but straight out of the can it was just sweet. Cloyingly sweet. (And this is from me - the guy who didn't spit out Peep Oreos.)

I checked the label to see just which preservatives I was eating, and was fairly surprised to see this:
I know absolutely nothing about food science, but... well... there don't seem to be any real preservatives listed, aside from the one to retain color. But I do know that sugar doesn't ever go bad, and so I'm guessing that the two versions of corn syrup were the ingredients that had kept it from going moldy.

On the plus side, even though I don't eat a ton of really highly processed foods (okay... more than a lot of people do, but not a ton), apparently the amount of sugar in my diet may kill me - but I'm going to be very well preserved.

(I keep promising that I'll get back to more real food discussions. And I will. Soon. Especially now that I've thrown out the rest of that can and made more room in my fridge.)

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