Gumbo is served over rice. It is a New Orleans stew that has seafood or meat and vegetables. Most people don’t know how to store the leftovers. Improper storing of leftovers can lead to bacterial growth that is dangerous to health. Shellfish is the key ingredient of Gumbo and it easily spoils more than meat.
Make sure the gumbo is cool enough before keeping it in the fridge. Let it cool in a room temperature, but never leave it out for a couple of hours. Allowing it to sit out longer can make your gumbo spoiled. Thus, to avoid throwing away leftovers, follow the standard time to preserve the freshness.
When storing leftover, transfer it in a small container enough to fit in the freezer or refrigerator. You can use a zip-lock bag or plastic containers. They are ideal for freezing the leftover. Expect that the gumbo will last in the refrigerator for a maximum of four days. If the temperature of the freezer is 0°F, the gumbo leftover will last for three months.
In case you want to serve the leftover on the next day, let it thaw before reheating. To thaw a frozen gumbo, submerge it in a basin with cool tap water. Replace the water until it is well thawed. Eat it as soon as after reheating. Reheat the leftover in a low fire to avoid bubbles in the mixture. But if you notice bubbles, most likely the gumbo is spoiled.
Using a microwave to defrost and reheat
You can also defrost and reheat the leftover gumbo in a microwave. Follow the instructions of the microwave.
Step #1: If you reheat the gumbo in the microwave, loosen the lid of the container. Turn on the microwave.
Step #2: Set the defrost setting according to the weight of the gumbo. Pause the microwave and stir the soup for a few times until it is fully defrosted.
Step #3: Once it is defrosted, transfer it in a bowl that is microwave safe.
Step #4: Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and set the microwave to the steaming stage. Let it boil for five minutes or until the soup is steaming.
Step #5: Let it rest in the microwave for a minute to allow even distribution of heat throughout the soup.
Step #6: Transfer the hot gumbo in serving dishes.
Another thing to consider preventing spoilage of the gumbo is if there’s a need to transport it. If you will bring it on a long trip, there’s a significant chance that it will get spoiled. The best thing to do is place the container in a cooler. Insert frozen gel packs or ice inside the cooler.
Use an insulated cooler to ensure it will stay cold longer. Otherwise, if the ice packs melt, spoilage may occur. Another option if you will transport the gumbo is to keep it frozen for a longer time.
Spoiled gumbo carries dangerous bacteria. It may not be visible on your food, but it will make you sick. Thus, if you feel unwell after eating a leftover gumbo, consult a doctor immediately.
Food storage and shelf life guidelines: