National Pasta Day has Italian restaurants ready to fill your noodle needs. Which, as it turns out, is a good thing because the National Pasta Association says that Americans eat about 20 pounds of pasta each year.
On National Pasta Day, it’s not only a great time to enjoy one of the 600 pasta types, but also a perfect time to practice food safety when serving and storing pasta leftovers. Did you know, that refrigerated pasta leftovers are safe for only 3-4 days?
Cooked pasta is one food that people often dismiss when it comes to food poisoning and most people are surprised that cooked pasta presents a food poisoning risk.
Bacillus cereus or B. cereus is a type of bacteria that produces toxins. Bacillus cereus is a well-known cause of foodborne illness, but infection with this organism is not commonly reported because of its usually mild symptoms.
The toxins from can cause two types of illness: one type characterized by diarrhea and the other, called emetic toxin, by nausea and vomiting.
Bacillus cereus bacteria are present in foods and can multiply quickly at room temperature. If cooked food is allowed to cool, slowly the spores can germinate and reheating or lightly cooking the food will not destroy this toxin. The bacteria can also grow and produce toxin at refrigeration temperatures, it just does so much more slowly than at room temperature.
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Bacillus cereus Food Illness Details
|Sources||A variety of foods, particularly pasta, rice, as well as sauces, soups, and other prepared foods that have sat out too long at room temperature or too long in the refrigerator as leftovers.|
|Duration of Illness||24 hours|
|What Do I Do?||Drink plenty of fluids and get rest. If you cannot drink enough fluids to prevent dehydration, call your doctor.|
|How Can I Prevent Illness?||
Two Hour Rule
Two hours is the maximum time perishable foods should be at room temperature (one hour at temperatures 90°F and higher). This includes the time they’re on the table during your meal.
Just one bacterium, doubling every 20 minutes, can grow to over 2,097,152 bacteria in 7 hours!
Reheating food may not make it safe. If food is left out too long, some bacteria can form a heat-resistant toxin that cooking can’t destroy.
National Pasta Day 2018: Deals on Pasta
Here are the best deals and ongoing specials, available at participating locations. To be on the safe side, check with your closest location before heading out. Also, use #NationalPastaDay on social media to find more deals on pasta.
- Applebee’s: For a limited time, participating locations have new neighborhood pastas that are served with a breadstick. Find the pasta varieties at www.applebees.com.
- Biaggi’s Ristorante Italiano: Join Club Biaggi’s at www.biaggis.com/club-biaggis for discounts.
- Buca di Beppo: The chain has pasta specials this month and a contest for the chance to win a trip for two to Italy. Sign up for the Buca E-Club at www.bucadibeppo.com/eclub.
- Carrabba’s Italian Grill: Spaghetti Pomodoro, Linguini Positano and Fettucine Alfredo are $10 Wednesday.
- Corner Bakery Café: Buy one pasta entrée, get one free Wednesday with a coupon. One offer per order and dine-in only at participating locations.
- Fazoli’s: Sign up for the chain’s eFamily club at www.fazolis.com/efamily and get a free welcome gift. Grab a box of Signature Select Pasta for free on Wednesday, October 17th by saying “Lots a Pasta” at the register to redeem. (Valid 1 per customer on 10/17 only) pic.twitter.com/WfXhumGaYh
- Jewel-Osco: Grab a free box of Signature Select Pasta on Wednesday by saying “Lots a Pasta” at the register to redeem. Limit one per customer.
- Maggiano’s: For a limited time, take home a free Classic Pasta when you order any Specialty Pasta, Chef Featured Pasta or other Classic Pasta with the “Today and Tomorrow Pastas” special. Also, join the Maggiano’s E-Club at www.maggianos.com/e-club and get a coupon for $10 off.
- Olive Garden: The eight-week long Never Ending Pasta Bowl promotion continues through Nov. 18. The pasta bowl starts at $10.99.
- P.F. Changs: Now through Friday, get a free Chicken Pad Thai with any entree purchase and a coupon posted at www.pfchangs.com.
- Piada Italian Street Food: The chain will serve Barilla’s Spaghetti Rigati in all restaurants all day Wednesday for National Pasta Day. It’s a nationwide test of a new recipe and marks the first time the company is using a different kind of pasta since opening in 2010.
- Romano’s Macaroni Grill: This is a lunch-time only deal for Wednesday available from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. With a coupon posted at www.macaronigrill.com, get a free lunch with the purchase of a lunch at participating locations. Also, the chain is celebrating National Pasta Month by giving first responders free meals. Through Oct. 31, police officers, firefighters, emergency service personnel, paramedics and hospital medical staff members can get one Mom’s Ricotta Meatballs and Spaghetti entrée for lunch of dinner when they dine in and show their ID. Sign up for future deals by signing up for the email newsletter.
- Sfoglini: Get 20 percent off sitewide Wednesday at www.sfoglini.com with promo code PASTADAY20.
More deals: Locally-owned businesses and smaller chains also may have National Pasta Day specials. One of the easiest ways to find out is by checking social media.