Happy Memorial Day! This unofficial start to summer often includes outdoor eating celebrations, including picnics, barbeques, and cookouts. Sometimes these fresh-air meals increase the risk of food poisoning, so take a few steps to keep everyone safe. My top 3 tips:
First, wash your hands before, during and after all food prep. Be sure everyone else does, too, or provide wet wipes and hand sanitizer on your outdoor tables.
Second, do not let food sit out for more than an hour. Serve small portions of perishable foods while keeping extra portions in the refrigerator or cooler.
Third, make sure hot foods are hot (use a food thermometer to cook steaks, pork and fish to 145oF, burgers to 160oF, and chicken to 165oF,) and cold foods are cold (keep coolers packed with ice to stay below 40oF).
I never used food and fridge thermometers much before I studied nutrition, but once I learned how easily bacteria grow in warm weather, the more vigilant I became. I hope you will, too.
Find more great tips here and here.
Just One Thing to do: Keep foods safe by washing hands often and paying attention to temperatures and times!