I know I've blogged about this before, but my husband thinks expiration dates are mere guidelines, and perhaps even completely unnecessary. He also hates waste and is the human garbage disposal around here. He eats up the leftovers and even the things no one else will eat. The other day, I kid you not, he took grapes out of the sink (studies show the sink is the germiest part of your kitchen) that I had tossed in there because they were "gross." Granted, "gross" to me meant "squishy" and while I'm sure they probably tasted perfectly fine, I HATE squishy grapes so I tossed them. He scooped them up, washed them off and put them in a bag so he could take them for his lunch.
Today, he decided to make homemade bread. As he was mixing the ingredients, he started laughing to himself. When I asked why, he showed me the yeast jar. Across the expiration date, he had marked a big, black line and on top of that written "good forever" in Sharpie. Yeast is NOT good forever. Duh. That's why it has an expiration date. And why you keep it in the fridge. Because it's PERISHABLE.
I wonder if he's tried to black out the expiration dates on other things? He once got so mad at me for throwing out canned goods that were years past their prime. He even fished some of them out of the garbage. Granted, this man has an iron stomach, but I was once struck with a food-borne illness so bad, I thought I might die. So, of course we have different opinions about what is good and what is spoiled. One good case of e coli and he'll change his mind.
We recently caught a boatload of salmon. He's been cooking it, brining it, smoking it and preparing it for days. But even delicious, fresh-caught salmon has a limit. What's the saying? "Fish and visitors start to smell bad after three days." Or something like that. It's good enough for me. After three days, I toss it.
I know he sometimes prepares dinners with less than fresh ingredients - maybe some wilted lettuce, tomatoes I would have thrown out, a canned good or two that lingered in the pantry a few months too long. If I don't KNOW he's doing it, then it doesn't hurt me. But I'm also really diligent about throwing out old food before he notices it. After the dumpster-diving canned-goods incident, I've learned to clean the pantry when he's gone. And then throw some other stuff on top so he can't see it in the garbage. Evasive measures, my friends.
But....he cooks. Really well. The yeast might not be "good forever" but he will be the one to make it last well beyond its useful life. He's a depression-era man in the wrong century. But I still can't believe he took the grapes out of the sink!