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Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Food Safety

Well Folks: I've been writing this blog for 2 months, and I think its time I talk about food safety. I always tell people I only have 2 rules when I BBQ.
Rule # 1 Make no one sick.
Rule # 2  Make it taste good.
I have been passing along some recipes on how to make good tasting food on the grill. I think maybe I need to make sure you follow some basic rules on food safety so you won't break Rule #1 and make someone sick.

The most important thing you need to know is two temperatures, that's 40 degrees and 140 degrees. Bad things happen when food is between those 2 temperatures. The basic rule is food left out and is above 40 degrees and below 140 degrees for 4 hours  bad things happen. I personally shorten that time to 2 hours. I don't leave food out for over 2 hours that is above 40 degrees and below 140 degrees. It's really pretty easy after 2 hours get all the cold food in  the fridge or on ice so it stays below 40 degrees, and make sure any hot food has been kept hot and above 140 degrees. If in doubt get the hot food wrapped and in the fridge so it to can get below the 40 degree mark.

Now the next thing, is keep your work area clean and don't cross contaminate.  I use food trays that I bought at Restaurant Depot. I have 4 of them they work great, I use them as a cutting board and I can switch out when I need to prep another food. They also have a nice lip so all the juices stay contained and makes clean up easy. You need a disinfectant  mix of 1 TBS bleach to a gallon of water to wipe your work area down.

Last but not least your hands. Wash them a lot. Wash them ever time you switch food in the preparation. I use vinyl gloves, they work great at  keeping hands clean, and I just switch out every time I change to a different food in prep. You can also find them at Restaurant Depot, also I found them in the Pharmacy Dept.

So really food safety is easy, if you just watch your food temperatures and keep your cold food cold, and your hot food hot. The other thing to remember is keep your work area and your hands clean. Follow these simple steps and you won't have a problem with Rule # 1. I will keep posting my recipes so Rule #2 isn't problem either.

Next, I'll tell you how to make fried chicken on the grill