I like fresh food. There are very few things that I will even think about eating when it comes to food and expiration dates. However, there are two exceptions to this rule: soda pop and canned food. I decided that drinking expired pop wasn’t that big of a deal because up until a few years ago, pop didn’t even have expiration dates printed on it. Besides, not much can go wrong with sugar and water, right? I generally feel pretty safe with canned food as long as the can doesn’t look like it’s been dropped from a two story building and soaking in a mud puddle for the past few months. Besides these two exceptions, I will almost always pass on anything that has expired and usually on things that are close to expiring. I like fresh milk. I usually will not drink plain milk unless it is within the first few days of opening a fresh jug. Yes, there is a difference. Same goes with bread. I also won’t usually eat leftovers that more than a day or two old.
You might think all this is weird but let me tell you why. I’ve eaten too much “day old”, expired, or “past it’s prime” food in my day. One things is for sure, thank goodness for my parents who found plenty of ways to provide food for the family while times were tough.
First off was the food storage. My mom, bless her heart, spent plenty of time at one point in her life canning cherries. To be honest, I am not sure when the last time was that she did that, or even if I had been born yet but I’d be willing to bet that there were still a few jars of home canned cherries that were tossed when my parents moved a few years ago. With that in mind, I’d say the shelf life of those puppies were pushing at least 15 years. Amazing.
And then there was Gleaners. Ah, Gleaners. This was a community organization where you paid a small fee to belong to a club where the members when around and collected past date foods from local grocery stores. Each member would take turns at doing the collections and bring it back to someone’s garage where other members could come and take what they wanted. One of the rules was that when you did the collection, you had to bring everything back to the garage and then you could take what you wanted. Of course the only way to get the really good stuff was to hide it before making the drop off of the goods. That’s usually when we got things like cakes and other terrible-for-you pastries.
Oh, and then there was Papa Murphy’s Pizza. Cari-Ann (my sis) and her high school boyfriend, Chris (still good family friend) both worked at Papa Murphy’s when they were 16. At the end of the night, they were able to take home any extra pre-made pizza that was leftover from the night. It wasn’t unusual for the food storage freezer to have half a dozen pizzas stacked up in it. Most kinds of Papa Murphy’s Pizza just isn’t a special treat to me because of this. Oh, and a little tip: it is sooo much better fresh than after it’s been frozen.
So you might be wondering, “what’s with the story?” Well, this all brings me to the following: Milano cookies. I received a package of Milano cookies today from someone who shall remain anonymous (and no, it wasn’t Devin). Normally, I LOVE these (though my favorite are the mint ones, just in case you want to make a note). But then I saw this:
——–this is where you imagine a picture of the package of cookies———
——–with a nice close-up of the expiration date———-
Yes, 2008, not 2009. So a full year past the expiration. Then I think, well, aren’t these things usually good for a good year or two after you purchase them? So, if they are already expired by a full year, that means that they were bought what? Three-ish years ago?!
So thanks, but no thanks. But I guess it’s the thought that counts, right?