Getting ready for fantastic food this 4th of July

Although cooking outdoors was once only a summer activity shared with family and friends, more than half of Americans say they are cooking outdoors year round.  So whether the snow is blowing or the sun is shining brightly, it is important to follow food safety guidelines to prevent harmful bacteria from multiplying and causing foodborne illness.  Visit the Ocean County Health Department website at www.ochd.org to find food safety tips, including buying, cooking, transporting and storing food, applicable all year long.

 

One of the biggest BBQ weekends of the year is fast approaching .... 4th of July Holiday Weekend. Our friends at the Ocean County Health Department want to remind us to cook safe and keep our families out of harms way.

Here are some safety tips for you ....

  • Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Use two cutting boards to keep raw meat, chicken, and fish apart from vegetables.
  • Use a food thermometer to check meat, fish, and chicken after it is cooked.

        *Hamburgers should be cooked to 160 degrees F., while large cuts of beef such as roasts and steaks may be cooked to 145 degrees F. for medium rare or to 160 degrees F. for medium.
*Poultry must reach a temperature of 165 degrees F.
*Fish should be opaque and flake easily.

  • When taking foods off the grill, do not put cooked food items back on the same plate that held raw food, unless washed with hot water and soap first.
  • Chill food and leftovers in the refrigerator as soon as you finish eating.
  • Always wash fruits and vegetables under running water before cutting or eating.
  • Keep eggs in the refrigerator; cook eggs until the yolk is firm.
  • Defrost frozen food in the microwave or refrigerator, not the counter.
  • Mayonnaise-based foods need to be kept cold.  Mayonnaise alone is too acidic for bacteria to grow in it; however, when mixed with other foods, bacteria can grow if kept too warm.
  • Bacteria, such as Salmonella and Shigella, are often present on the rind of melons so it is important to wash the melon thoroughly before cutting. Once cut, refrigerate the cut pieces of melon.
  • Serve hot foods steaming hot and cold foods cold.
  • Do not buy expired food.  Throw food out if it smells bad or if you are not sure it is safe to eat.

 

Have fun this 4th of July and don't forget to join Shawn & Sue for the Annual Beachwood Fireworks on the River .... Friday, July 4th ........