Barbequing outdoors is a great summer event for everyone to enjoy; however, barbequing holds hidden risks. Grilling outside can increase the risk for developing a case of food poisoning. Luckily, the risk for food poisoning is decreased if proper food safety tips are followed.
Before the barbecuing even begins, there are precautions that need to be taken to ensure the food doesn’t become contaminated. Preparing the food for the grill should include washing your hands before and after handling the food.
The grill and utensils that will be used for the grill should be cleaned with hot water and soap before beginning to cook. The dishes and utensils that will be used for the meat should be separated into two categories; cooked meat and raw meat. Keeping the two separate will decrease the chance of the food becoming contaminated with bacteria.
The meat should be refrigerated immediately after purchasing and within an hour after it has been cooked to keep the risk for food poisoning to a minimum.
When grilling meat, it’s important for the meat to be cooked completely. The meat should be checked with a meat thermometer to make sure it’s fully cooked. Fully cooked meat kills any germs that may have been present in the meat prior to grilling.
After the meat has been barbequed, it should be separated from any food, utensils, or dishes that came in contact with the raw meat. The cooked meat should be refrigerated within an hour after it has been cooked and absolutely no longer than two hours after.
Fruits and Vegetables
Fruits and vegetables that will be used on the barbeque should be completely cleaned before cooking or eating them. This is very important to do with foods that have a rind, such as cantaloupe and watermelon. Bacteria can grow on the rinds. When the fruit is cut, the knife will transfer the bacteria to the inside of the fruit.
Common side dishes at barbeques are macaroni salad and potato salad. The two can pose as food poisoning risks if the proper safety precautions are not followed. These dishes contain mayonnaise, which has milk and egg ingredients. This can cause the food to quickly spoil. The food should be refrigerated until it is ready to be served and returned back to the refrigerator quickly afterwards.
Following these simple food safety tips will allow you enjoy your barbeque without having to worry about coming down with an unexpected case of food poisoning. Extreme heat can greatly increase the chance of food spoiling quicker and an increased growth of bacteria. Therefore, it’s very important to follow these safety precautions.