Ho Ho Ho….It’s that time of year when everybody is getting into the festive and holiday Christmas spirit. Gathering with family & friends, exchanging gifts and enjoying the feast. Food poisoning isn’t on anyone’s Christmas list, so make sure you only give people what they want this year – i.e. not food-poisoning!
We’ve done all the hard work for you and put together some canny little Festive Safety Tips for you to follow
Keep things clean:
- Wash hands before and after handling any food. Wet or damp hands can spread bugs between food and surfaces!
- Wash all surfaces (cutting boards, dishes, utensils and countertops) before and after preparing each food item.
- Wash dishcloths and tea towels regularly, and let them dry before you use them again. Dirty, damp cloths are the perfect place for germs to spread.
- Don’t wash raw meat (including chicken & turkey) this can spread bacteria around your kitchen.
Look after your Fridge:
- Keep your fridge temperature below 4°C/40°F and use a DRF1 Fridge Thermometer to check it. This prevents harmful germs from growing.
- Avoid overfilling your fridge as it stops the cold air circulating properly, which can affect the overall temperature.
- Always cover raw meat and store on the bottom shelf of the fridge, where it can’t touch or drip onto other foods to stop contamination.
- Open foods should not be kept longer than three days
- Don’t eat food that’s past its use-by date, even if it looks and smells okay. Use-by dates are based on scientific tests that show how quickly harmful bugs can develop in the packaged food
Cook food thoroughly:
- Meat, poultry, seafood, and eggs can carry germs that cause food poisoning. Use a Comark Food Thermometer to ensure these foods have been cooked to the safe minimum internal temperature. Roasts, chops, steaks and fresh ham should rest for 3 minutes after removing from the oven or grill.
- Keep food out of the “danger zone” Bacteria can grow rapidly at room temperature. After food is cooked, keep hot food hot and cold food cold. Refrigerate or freeze any perishable food within 2 hours.
- Use pasteurized eggs for dishes containing raw eggs. Salmonellaand other harmful germs can live on both the outside and inside of normal-looking eggs. Many holiday favorites contain raw eggs, including eggnog, tiramisu, hollandaise sauce.
Store the leftovers:
- Cool leftovers as quickly as possible, ideally within two hours, cover and refrigerate.
- Use leftovers within two days and if reheating, do so until steaming hot all the way through and don’t reheat leftovers more than once.
- If you want to keep leftovers longer than two days, you can freeze them instead. Cool leftovers before putting them in the freezer and use within one month. Once defrosted, don’t refreeze the leftovers. Use a Comark DRF1 Freezer Thermometer to check your Freezer is below -18°C/0°F
- Don’t taste food that looks or smells questionable. When in doubt, throw it out
Sources: FSA, CDC, USDA