As we enter the month of July, I can only bet that you will be firing up the grill much more often than not for the next couple of months! You may use the grill just for entertaining on the weekends, or use it religiously each night. Or maybe you are a weekend camper or beach doer and use public barbeque grills. No matter what type of griller you are, it is important to keep you and your loved ones safe through proper practices when firing up.
Think of the grill as an extension of your kitchen and start on a clean surface! Before throwing on your award winning creations, be sure to scrub the grill with warm water and soap. Be sure to wash your hands before handling any produce or meat as bacteria is easily transferable from your hands to food items you’re preparing. If you are camping, try packing hand sanitizer in your cooler for a more convenient option.
Other helpful safety tips:
? Thaw frozen meat in the refrigerator, never on the countertop. The same rules hold for marinating your meat, as you should always marinate in the refrigerator or cooler if on the go.
? If you are planning on using marinade that raw meat was basting in after your meat comes off the grill, it must be boiled to kill any bacteria lingering from the raw meat.
? Wash any utensils which you used to handle raw meat before using them to transport cooked meat to your dinner table.
? Have 2 separate cutting boards: 1 for raw meat and 1 for vegetables and other ready-to-eat foods. This further minimizes the transfer of bacteria. The easiest way to do this is to color code your cutting boards. For example, have a purple cutting board for produce and a red cutting board for raw meat.
? Always be sure to cook your meaty masterpieces to the right temperature. Undercooked meat can be harmful to your health and families well being. It is also important to refrigerate your meat after you are done eating. Do not let leftovers sit on the counter, in the hot sun, or on a picnic table for your family to pick at over the course of the day!
? Lastly, enjoy the grill! Following grill safety rules will ensure that you and your family will have a happy and healthy summer and grilling season. So, grill on!
Your turn to take action: How will you practice grilling safely this season?