Getting the children involved in cooking and preparing meals especially in the school holidays is a great way for them to have fun and to learn about healthy eating.
The Seaside Gourmet Meats team has tracked down some basic tips on food safety to keep little tummies and not so little tummies healthy and happy.
Most of it is simple clean, separate, cook and chill. By following these four simple steps you can help prevent food poisoning from bacteria and viruses.
Clean: wash hands and work surface often
- Wash hands for 20 seconds with warm water and soap before and after you touch food
- To prevent those nasty bacteria from growing – wash cutting board, dishes, bench tops and cooking utensils with hot soapy water before and after each food item.
- ·Rinse fresh fruit and vegetables under running tap water.
Separate: Don’t mix raw with cooked
- Keep raw meat, poultry, seafood and eggs separate from other foods.
- Use separate cutting boards for fresh produce and for raw meat, poultry and seafood.
- Don’t use the same plate for raw foods and cooked foods (your cooked food can get some of those nasty bacteria).
Cook: Cook foods to the right temperature
- To help you know when food is cooked at the right inside temperature use a food thermometer
- To prevent bacteria from living ensure there are no cold spots in the food. For prefect results rotate the dish once or twice during cooking.
Chill: Refrigerate right away – don’t wait.
- When you arrive home from the store refrigerate or freeze meat, poultry and other perishables.
- Do not let raw meat, poultry, eggs, cooked food or fresh fruit and vegetables sit at room temperature for more than two hours. To keep them fresh and healthy for you to eat, put them in a container in the fridge or the freezer with a label and date.
- There are three safe ways to defrost food to keep it safe; in the refrigerator, in cold water and in the microwave.
- When marinating food always keep it in the fridge to marinate
Remember, it is important to make sure that an adult is supervising children at all times in the kitchen. Adults can help with the more difficult tasks, such as chopping vegetables, using the stove and taking hot food out of the oven or microwave.