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GAIL CIAMPA

gciampa@providencejournal.com

 

With 4 of July picnics looming, and temps keeping it warm, it’s time to discuss food safety. How to pack a cooler ranks as high as keeping hands washed.

The RI Hospitality Association (RIHA) has some  tips from the National Restaurant Association’s HomeFoodSafety.com site to help keep meals safe.

“With so many cookouts and outdoor events planned around the holiday, we want to ensure that people are safely handling and storing their foods properly,” said Dale J. Venturini, President and CEO of RIHA.

Follow these five tips.

Wash your hands.

 Wash hands before handling any food, and always after handling raw meats. Wet hands/arms with water as hot as you can comfortably stand; add soap; scrub hands/arms for 10 to 15 seconds (the time it takes to slowly recite aloud the “Pledge of Allegiance”); rinse with warm water; and dry hands with a clean paper towel or hand-dryer.

Pack your cooler correctly. 

Pack raw food that you intend to cook (like raw hamburgers) in a separate cooler from food that is already cooked and ready to eat, including beverages and produce. If you use ice in your raw foods cooler, don’t use that ice for anything else.

Use a thermometer to make sure you are maintaining a temperature of 41 degrees or lower around any food.

Prep raw and ready-to-eat foods separately. 

Use separate cutting boards and other prep surfaces for raw and cooked food to minimize cross-contamination risk. A good way to remember which is which is to use different colored boards, for example red for meats and green for vegetables.

Use separate plates and utensils for raw and cooked foods. 

After putting raw burgers, chicken breasts or other meats on the grill, switch to clean spatulas, tongs and plates. Using the same utensils and surfaces for uncooked and cooked meats could lead to cross-contamination.

Cook food to safe temperatures. 

Have you ever seen how culinary students wear a food thermometer on their sleeves? Get in that same habit.

Raw meat and poultry could contain bacteria that can lead to foodborne illness if not properly cooked. Because heat kills bacteria, be sure to cook hamburgers to an internal temperature of 155 degrees for at least 15 seconds. Chicken and turkey are safe at 165 degrees and steaks and chops at 145 degrees. Always use a meat thermometer and measure the middle of the thickest part of the food.

http://www.providencejournal.com/features/food/food-for-thought/20130702-five-food-preparation-tips-to-keep-you-safe-for-july-4-and-all-summer-long.ece


Category :
General
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30570
Registered Date :
2013.07.17
10:50:11
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