Author Topic: make hard boiled eggs, then forgot and left them overnight in the pota  (Read 3755 times)

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Online bachfiend

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Evidence that hard boiling eggs won’t kill all the bacteria in eggs due to a breach of adequate poultry farm practice?  You keep on asserting it, but you’ve never provided support for your claim.

Unshelled hard boiled eggs are still not opened, even if the shell is porous.  A dry shell won’t allow bacteria to enter in the same way as the dry paper wrapping around surgical instruments after autoclaving won’t allow bacteria to enter, despite paper being permeable too.

And in the scenario under discussion, the hard boiled eggs are in boiled sterile water, so it’s perfectly safe to eat the boiled eggs the next morning.

It’s not necessary to treat hard boiled eggs in the same way as partially cooked and uncooked food items as you claim.
You seem to be requesting evidence from me but has not once provided evidence from your part. Considering that every mayor food safety organization advocates a maximum of two hour shelf life for hard boiled eggs at room temperature, should mean something. But you seem to not be providing any evidence that contradicts these recommendations by the FDA and WHO among others.

PS: Where did I mention inadequate poultry farm practices?

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I initially brought up the reason why eggs are sometimes contaminated with Salmonella.  Normally eggs are sterile because they’re ‘designed’ to be incubated at the bird’s body temperature for weeks before the chick hatches.


Designed by whom?

Quote
You’re misreading the recommendations, which are for cooked egg products in general, not hard boiled eggs in particular, which have been heated to at least 70 degrees Celsius for minutes, adequate to kill all enteric pathogens, except perhaps heat resistent exotoxins, such as from Staph aureus.  And Intoxikation with that usually results from contamination from food handlers.

No. He's reading the recommendations, not reading into them exceptions that are not there. While it's true that temperature is adequate to kill many bacteria, that's not the question. The question is should it be considered safe to leave hardboiled eggs at room temperature overnight.  (Hint: It's not considered safe)

Since the guidelines don't make an exception for how the eggs are prepared, the guidelines apply.

Quote
There’s no evidence that adequately hard boiled eggs contain surviving enteric bacteria.  Prove me wrong.  Show some evidence that when hard boiled eggs have been cultured, they’ve grown anything.


Proven wrong.


Staphylococcal food poisoning associated with an Easter egg hunt. - PubMed - NCBI

Quote
Staphylococcal contamination of intact, hard-boiled eggs resulted in the food poisoning of an estimated 300 children out of 850 who had participated in an Easter egg hunt. Enterotoxigenic staphylococci that were isolated from the Easter eggs matched that obtained from an infected cook who prepared the eggs three to five days before the hunt and which he left unrefrigerated. Experimental studies demonstrated that heated eggs can absorb 2 mL of contaminated cool water through intact eggshells. When water was inoculated with pathogenic staphylococci at even low contamination levels, rapid growth and enterotoxin production within cooked eggs could be easily duplicated. This is the first large outbreak of its type; safeguards can and should be employed to prevent future ones.

This isn’t what I was asking for.  Hard boiling eggs 3 to 5 days earlier and then leaving them randomly hidden in the environment, prone to contamination with any nature of non-sterile moisture, is obviously a completely different situation to the scenario being considered; hard boiling eggs one evening and then forgetting them and leaving them in the pot containing the boiled sterile water till the next morning.  Are they still safe to eat?  Obviously they are.

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Offline Captain Video

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Evidence that hard boiling eggs won’t kill all the bacteria in eggs due to a breach of adequate poultry farm practice?  You keep on asserting it, but you’ve never provided support for your claim.

Unshelled hard boiled eggs are still not opened, even if the shell is porous.  A dry shell won’t allow bacteria to enter in the same way as the dry paper wrapping around surgical instruments after autoclaving won’t allow bacteria to enter, despite paper being permeable too.

And in the scenario under discussion, the hard boiled eggs are in boiled sterile water, so it’s perfectly safe to eat the boiled eggs the next morning.

It’s not necessary to treat hard boiled eggs in the same way as partially cooked and uncooked food items as you claim.
You seem to be requesting evidence from me but has not once provided evidence from your part. Considering that every mayor food safety organization advocates a maximum of two hour shelf life for hard boiled eggs at room temperature, should mean something. But you seem to not be providing any evidence that contradicts these recommendations by the FDA and WHO among others.

PS: Where did I mention inadequate poultry farm practices?

Quote
I initially brought up the reason why eggs are sometimes contaminated with Salmonella.  Normally eggs are sterile because they’re ‘designed’ to be incubated at the bird’s body temperature for weeks before the chick hatches.


Designed by whom?

Quote
You’re misreading the recommendations, which are for cooked egg products in general, not hard boiled eggs in particular, which have been heated to at least 70 degrees Celsius for minutes, adequate to kill all enteric pathogens, except perhaps heat resistent exotoxins, such as from Staph aureus.  And Intoxikation with that usually results from contamination from food handlers.

No. He's reading the recommendations, not reading into them exceptions that are not there. While it's true that temperature is adequate to kill many bacteria, that's not the question. The question is should it be considered safe to leave hardboiled eggs at room temperature overnight.  (Hint: It's not considered safe)

Since the guidelines don't make an exception for how the eggs are prepared, the guidelines apply.

Quote
There’s no evidence that adequately hard boiled eggs contain surviving enteric bacteria.  Prove me wrong.  Show some evidence that when hard boiled eggs have been cultured, they’ve grown anything.


Proven wrong.


Staphylococcal food poisoning associated with an Easter egg hunt. - PubMed - NCBI

Quote
Staphylococcal contamination of intact, hard-boiled eggs resulted in the food poisoning of an estimated 300 children out of 850 who had participated in an Easter egg hunt. Enterotoxigenic staphylococci that were isolated from the Easter eggs matched that obtained from an infected cook who prepared the eggs three to five days before the hunt and which he left unrefrigerated. Experimental studies demonstrated that heated eggs can absorb 2 mL of contaminated cool water through intact eggshells. When water was inoculated with pathogenic staphylococci at even low contamination levels, rapid growth and enterotoxin production within cooked eggs could be easily duplicated. This is the first large outbreak of its type; safeguards can and should be employed to prevent future ones.

This isn’t what I was asking for.  Hard boiling eggs 3 to 5 days earlier and then leaving them randomly hidden in the environment, prone to contamination with any nature of non-sterile moisture, is obviously a completely different situation to the scenario being considered; hard boiling eggs one evening and then forgetting them and leaving them in the pot containing the boiled sterile water till the next morning.  Are they still safe to eat?  Obviously they are.

wouldn't that also depend on the cleanliness of the kitchen?
Were they cooled in the same pot?
Are there bugs in the kitchen?
What is the air quality like?

the water even if truly boiled and sterile was then cooled at an unsafe speed in an open environment.  Hot food, including food sitting in water must be cooled in an ice bath or in a fridge. It never reached a safe temperature.

Someone brushes up against some Salmonella at Subway and it gets in their hair. Once they get home a hair dislodges and floats in the air until it lands in the water just as it reaches 135 degrees F which allows it to grow quickly as it slowly reduces temperature,   The water is now contaminated as are the eggs. Perhaps a small splash of grease on the ceiling undetectable to the eye falls into the pan, or a chunk of dust from the ceiling fan. I could go on and on.

The water was food safe "sterile" only until it reached a temp of 144F.  lower than that in an open container and its no longer safe after 2 hours.

Letting it cool at room temp is also not safe and that would override the 2 hour rule if I understand the rules correctly.

BTW when I boil eggs I drain the hot water and place them in an ice bath which is the better way to do it for both safety and taste, you want the egg to stop cooking once it reaches your preferred doneness. You also want to eliminate a sulfur smell caused by overcooking.
« Last Edit: May 15, 2019, 12:57:36 AM by Captain Video »
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Online bachfiend

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Evidence that hard boiling eggs won’t kill all the bacteria in eggs due to a breach of adequate poultry farm practice?  You keep on asserting it, but you’ve never provided support for your claim.

Unshelled hard boiled eggs are still not opened, even if the shell is porous.  A dry shell won’t allow bacteria to enter in the same way as the dry paper wrapping around surgical instruments after autoclaving won’t allow bacteria to enter, despite paper being permeable too.

And in the scenario under discussion, the hard boiled eggs are in boiled sterile water, so it’s perfectly safe to eat the boiled eggs the next morning.

It’s not necessary to treat hard boiled eggs in the same way as partially cooked and uncooked food items as you claim.
You seem to be requesting evidence from me but has not once provided evidence from your part. Considering that every mayor food safety organization advocates a maximum of two hour shelf life for hard boiled eggs at room temperature, should mean something. But you seem to not be providing any evidence that contradicts these recommendations by the FDA and WHO among others.

PS: Where did I mention inadequate poultry farm practices?

Quote
I initially brought up the reason why eggs are sometimes contaminated with Salmonella.  Normally eggs are sterile because they’re ‘designed’ to be incubated at the bird’s body temperature for weeks before the chick hatches.


Designed by whom?

Quote
You’re misreading the recommendations, which are for cooked egg products in general, not hard boiled eggs in particular, which have been heated to at least 70 degrees Celsius for minutes, adequate to kill all enteric pathogens, except perhaps heat resistent exotoxins, such as from Staph aureus.  And Intoxikation with that usually results from contamination from food handlers.

No. He's reading the recommendations, not reading into them exceptions that are not there. While it's true that temperature is adequate to kill many bacteria, that's not the question. The question is should it be considered safe to leave hardboiled eggs at room temperature overnight.  (Hint: It's not considered safe)

Since the guidelines don't make an exception for how the eggs are prepared, the guidelines apply.

Quote
There’s no evidence that adequately hard boiled eggs contain surviving enteric bacteria.  Prove me wrong.  Show some evidence that when hard boiled eggs have been cultured, they’ve grown anything.


Proven wrong.


Staphylococcal food poisoning associated with an Easter egg hunt. - PubMed - NCBI

Quote
Staphylococcal contamination of intact, hard-boiled eggs resulted in the food poisoning of an estimated 300 children out of 850 who had participated in an Easter egg hunt. Enterotoxigenic staphylococci that were isolated from the Easter eggs matched that obtained from an infected cook who prepared the eggs three to five days before the hunt and which he left unrefrigerated. Experimental studies demonstrated that heated eggs can absorb 2 mL of contaminated cool water through intact eggshells. When water was inoculated with pathogenic staphylococci at even low contamination levels, rapid growth and enterotoxin production within cooked eggs could be easily duplicated. This is the first large outbreak of its type; safeguards can and should be employed to prevent future ones.

This isn’t what I was asking for.  Hard boiling eggs 3 to 5 days earlier and then leaving them randomly hidden in the environment, prone to contamination with any nature of non-sterile moisture, is obviously a completely different situation to the scenario being considered; hard boiling eggs one evening and then forgetting them and leaving them in the pot containing the boiled sterile water till the next morning.  Are they still safe to eat?  Obviously they are.

wouldn't that also depend on the cleanliness of the kitchen?
Were they cooled in the same pot?
Are there bugs in the kitchen?
What is the air quality like?

the water even if truly boiled and sterile was then cooled at an unsafe speed in an open environment.  Hot food, including food sitting in water must be cooled in an ice bath or in a fridge. It never reached a safe temperature.

Someone brushes up against some Salmonella at Subway and it gets in their hair. Once they get home a hair dislodges and floats in the air until it lands in the water just as it reaches 135 degrees F which allows it to grow quickly as it slowly reduces temperature,   The water is now contaminated as are the eggs. Perhaps a small splash of grease on the ceiling undetectable to the eye falls into the pan, or a chunk of dust from the ceiling fan. I could go on and on.

The water was food safe "sterile" only until it reached a temp of 144F.  lower than that in an open container and its no longer safe after 2 hours.

Letting it cool at room temp is also not safe and that would override the 2 hour rule if I understand the rules correctly.

BTW when I boil eggs I drain the hot water and place them in an ice bath which is the better way to do it for both safety and taste, you want the egg to stop cooking once it reaches your preferred doneness. You also want to eliminate a sulfur smell caused by overcooking.

The ‘2 hour rule’ is an excessive rule of thumb, fits all sizes generalization.  It ignores that it’s supposed to cover all situations, which it doesn’t.

I would discard scrambled eggs exposed to the air on a plate for two hours.  They’re probably safe, but I wouldn’t take the risk.  Scrambled eggs are only lightly cooked, and if there were contaminating bacteria from the poultry farm as a result of bad practices then cooking wouldn’t kill them.  And also there’s a lot of moist surface for bacteria falling on it for them to grow.  I wouldn’t discard unshelled hard boiled eggs in sterile boiled water eventually cooling to room temperature overnight (the hard boiling would have killed any bacteria from the poultry farm, and for bacteria from the environment to reach and grow in the yolk and white of the egg, they’d need to fall into the water, penetrate the shell and eventually penetrate the solid of the boiled egg, all of which would take many hours, far longer than 2 hours.  Nor would I discard dry unshelled hard boiled eggs at room temperature for 8 hours.

Safety of food depends on circumstances.  If there was a scare on about contaminated eggs, I wouldn’t be eating egg dishes at McDonalds (but then again, I never eat at fast food outlets).  I’d probably feel safe if I knew that I was going to cook adequately the eggs at home.  Yesterday, I travelled from Amsterdam to Hamburg, taking 8 hours, with two dry unshelled hard boiled eggs, which I de-shelled.  One I ate last night, and one I forgot about, so it was exposed to room air for 8 hours.  I thought about washing it, but eventually I just discarded it.  I think it was probably still safe, but decided I didn’t need to keep the egg.

The ‘2 hour rule’ is excessive, and just flies in the face of common sense.  I would expect restaurants to follow it strictly though.  If they didn’t, I’d be wondering what other more important rules they’re breaking.
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Offline Morvis13

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This discussion has already lasted longer than the egg.
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Offline Calinthalus

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This discussion has already lasted longer than the egg.
But which came first?
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Offline Morvis13

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This discussion has already lasted longer than the egg.
But which came first?
Clearly the egg did as a single celled organism.
Murphy's Law: Anything that can go wrong will go wrong.
Morvis' Law: Anything that does go wrong is my fault.

Offline Guillermo

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The ‘2 hour rule’ is an excessive rule of thumb, fits all sizes generalization.


This is correct. It is easier for a government agency to assign one rule to a group of meals then to study each meals individually. And easier for the general public to remember one rule. And I have been saying that this rule is in place for a larger population to keep said larger population safe, and it expects that said larger population follow the rule even if it is excessive. 

But you are arguing an extreme. Talking about a food item left out for more than 12 hours. That is way more time for any perishable food. Especially considering that bacteria can reach unsafe levels in 5 hours even starting with a minimum count. The most extreme situations I've seen as a recommendation specifically for unshelled hard boiled egg is about 8 hours. And this is from colleges (experts from universities that study poultry food safety). And it doesn't matter if it was sterile before.
You are arguing that it is sterile after more than 12 hours and can't possible be unsafe. But this is an extreme position that you cannot say given what we (science) know about bacterial growth and food poisoning.

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This discussion has already lasted longer than the egg.
And created a chicken-egg loop that we may not be able to get out of. Our only chance is to find a cat that walks through walls.
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https://www.fsis.usda.gov/wps/wcm/connect/fsis-content/internet/main/topics/food-safety-education/get-answers/food-safety-fact-sheets/egg-products-preparation/shell-eggs-from-farm-to-table/ct_index#21

Quote
Why do hard-cooked eggs spoil faster than fresh eggs?
When shell eggs are hard cooked, the protective coating is washed away, leaving bare the pores in the shell for bacteria to enter and contaminate it. Hard-cooked eggs should be refrigerated within 2 hours of cooking and used within a week.

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https://www.fsis.usda.gov/wps/wcm/connect/fsis-content/internet/main/topics/food-safety-education/get-answers/food-safety-fact-sheets/egg-products-preparation/shell-eggs-from-farm-to-table/ct_index#21

Quote
Why do hard-cooked eggs spoil faster than fresh eggs?
When shell eggs are hard cooked, the protective coating is washed away, leaving bare the pores in the shell for bacteria to enter and contaminate it. Hard-cooked eggs should be refrigerated within 2 hours of cooking and used within a week.

So that is not a general rule of thumb but a specific recommendation for hardboiled eggs.
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Offline Ah.hell

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I am amused by the length of this thread.  I wouldn't have thrown out the eggs.  I would have eaten them but probably not have fed them to my toddler and baby. 

I am surprised by the passion for such a rather mundane thing. 

Seriously 8 pages? 

Its a great lesson for the threads about things that actually matter.   Maybe I won't get so frustrated talking in circles about politics if I remember that we did the same thing for 8+ pages on boiled eggs. 


Online bachfiend

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The ‘2 hour rule’ is an excessive rule of thumb, fits all sizes generalization.


This is correct. It is easier for a government agency to assign one rule to a group of meals then to study each meals individually. And easier for the general public to remember one rule. And I have been saying that this rule is in place for a larger population to keep said larger population safe, and it expects that said larger population follow the rule even if it is excessive. 

But you are arguing an extreme. Talking about a food item left out for more than 12 hours. That is way more time for any perishable food. Especially considering that bacteria can reach unsafe levels in 5 hours even starting with a minimum count. The most extreme situations I've seen as a recommendation specifically for unshelled hard boiled egg is about 8 hours. And this is from colleges (experts from universities that study poultry food safety). And it doesn't matter if it was sterile before.
You are arguing that it is sterile after more than 12 hours and can't possible be unsafe. But this is an extreme position that you cannot say given what we (science) know about bacterial growth and food poisoning.

The scenario superdave was talking about was hard boiling eggs (presumably at night), forgetting about them and finding them in the pot (with the sterile boiled water the next morning), so we’re not talking about leaving them out for more than 12 hours.  And they’re not being left ‘out.’  They’re in sterile boiled water, for around your ‘extreme’ of 8 hours.  For them to be contaminated, first of all the water needs to be contaminated, which reduces the time they’re ‘out,’ exposed to external bacteria.

The eggs in the scenario being discussed are ‘safe’ to eat.
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Offline Captain Video

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I am amused by the length of this thread.  I wouldn't have thrown out the eggs.  I would have eaten them but probably not have fed them to my toddler and baby. 

I am surprised by the passion for such a rather mundane thing. 

Seriously 8 pages? 

Its a great lesson for the threads about things that actually matter.   Maybe I won't get so frustrated talking in circles about politics if I remember that we did the same thing for 8+ pages on boiled eggs.

I would argue that food safety discussion matters more than some of the crap in the politics forum even if it is only about eggs.  >:D

superdave didn't answer yet and nobody else commented.

*to anyone*

Is it a good idea to turn this into a food safety thread or should I start another one?
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Water boiled and left in a pot overnight is not sterile.
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Online brilligtove

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Water boiled and left in a pot overnight is not sterile.

I wonder how much contamination would happen if the pot were boiled with a lid on, and the cover was left undisturbed overnight.
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