Dining alfresco

Food safe for summer-casual dining also provides ideal conditions for outbreaks of foodborne illness.

  • Jul. 25, 2014 4:00 p.m.

.

It’s the time of year when many of us enjoy cooking outdoors—in parks, campgrounds and back yards. This pleasurable summer pastime of casual dining also provides ideal conditions for outbreaks of foodborne illness.

Foodborne illness peaks during the months of May through September because of barbecuing and outdoor eating.  E. coli, Salmonella and Campylobacter are examples of some of the many bacteria related to handling raw meats and other perishable food items. That’s why it’s vital to be sure items are refrigerated, well cooked and handled with care.

Outdoor chefs should keep food safety in mind as they are preparing summer feasts. These four words can help you reduce the risk:

Clean: Wash your hands with soap and warm water before and after handling food. Wash all dishes, cutting boards and counters with hot soapy water. A spray bottle containing 1/2 tsp of chlorine bleach per litre of water can be used to sanitize these items.

Separate:  Keep raw foods away from cooked foods to avoid cross-contamination. Store raw meat at the bottom of the fridge or cooler to prevent juices from dripping onto other foods. Always use a clean plate when taking cooked meat off the barbecue.

Cook: Properly cooking food will kill harmful bacteria. Cook all meat to the appropriate internal temperature—see Health Canada’s Safe Internal Cooking Temperatures chart (http://www.healthycanadians.gc.ca/eating-nutrition/safety-salubrite/cook-temperatures-cuisson-eng.php) for more details. Use a digital food thermometer to measure the inside temperature of cooked meats. Once cooked, keep hot foods at 60ºC or hotter until ready to serve.

Chill: Always thaw meat in the fridge, microwave, or under cold running water – never at room temperature. Do not let cooked food sit out at room temperature or in the sun for more than two hours. Cool any leftovers right away.  Finally, keep cold foods cold at 4ºC or lower.

For more tips, go to Interior Health’s website for the Life Begins at 40 degrees brochure or Health Canada’s Summer Food Safety Tips www.healthycanadians.gc.ca.

 

Just Posted

Rural dividend grants awarded in Kootenay West

Kootenay West MLA Katrine Conroy made the grant announcements in Trail on Thursday

Rossland skiier places third at U19 Canadian Ski Cross

Rossland’s Sage Stefani finished out a successful season.

Warfield elementary school celebrating 70 years

Webster Elementary School officially opened April 23, 1949; open house and events planned next week

Exhausted Rossland skateboard volunteers pass torch to city council

Organization asks council to take over project

Rossland council split on arena fix

Rossland council approves band-aid for arena, while its future is debated

VIDEO: Alberta man creates world’s biggest caricature

Dean Foster is trying to break the world record for a radio show contest

Should B.C. lower speed limits on side roads to 30 km/h?

Vancouver city councillor wants to decrease speed limits along neighbourhood side roads

Lawsuit eyed over union-only raise for B.C. community care workers

‘Low-wage redress’ leaves 17,000 employees out, employers say

Landlord of alleged Okanagan shooter recounts deadly day

Tony Friesen was working in one of the units of his Penticton building when he heard shots

Foreign national arrested in connection to thefts at YVR

A woman, 60, is being held in police custody as Richmond RCMP investigate

Police pursue pesky porker on Vancouver Island

‘This was allegedly not the pig’s first escape’

Westjet tries again to dismiss proposed class-action lawsuit alleging discrimination

Former flight attendant claims airline broke contractual promise to create harassment-free workplace

Man airlifted to hospital after apparent hunting incident in East Kootenay

The man was in stable condition when he was flown out of Fairmont Hot Springs to a Calgary hospital

Police probe eight fires set at B.C. elementary school

Nanaimo RCMP say fires appear to have been set intentionally

Most Read