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Don't Ruin Your BBQ: 4 Safety Tips

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When I was fourteen, my Food Technology teacher warned us that BBQs were dangerous places. "80% of food poisoning cases come from BBQs," she warned. I spent years avoiding the smokey but delicious charredness of barbequed food in the summer. 

Now that I'm older, I realise that my teacher was probably using a little bit of hyperbole. However, it is true that food poisoning is more likely to occur after a BBQ. So that you don't ruing your BBQ this summer, here are my 4 top safety tips:

1. Make sure it's HOT

Ensure that your BBQ coals are grey all over and with a red glow. Don't presume that just because there are flames or it feels hot, that it is hot enough. 

2. Try to cook all your meat in one go to stop cross contamination

We've all been there - half the sasuages have gone, children clamouring for more, quickly chuck some on and take them off as soon as they look done. Ideally, all the meat should be cooked at once; or if you are doing multiple servings, you should use a different grill. If you can't do this for practical reasons, ensure that all the food is fully cooked when you take it off and cook vegetables and vegetarian food first as this often chars faster, meaning that bacteria isn't killed. 

3. If you doubt it, don't eat it

Again, this is all about common sense - ask for your food to be cooked a bit more and alert the chef (obviously in your best, most well mannered way). 

4. Keep cold foods cold

Don't presume that the meat is the only danger. Keep salads, rice and pasta in the fridge until you are ready to eat them, then out of the sun once they are served. Never put anything that's un-eaten back into the fridge, and don't eat anything that has gotten warm. 

Enjoy the rest of your BBQs this summer! 

  #Columns   #Health Hacker   #summer   #bbq   #column   #food safety   #hygiene

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