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Food safety and common myths debunked

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Being a (newly) working Mom of three little one’s dinner time is not always easy peasy. I try my hardest to plan out our meals so my children will have home cooked food every night. But planning it out doesn’t always mean that it will happen. Long days, cranky kids, tired Mommy can equal me looking for a fast fix. And by fast I mean using the microwave. While it is easy it’s not always better.

Today I want to talk about a few food myths with you all and how to be safe in preparing food for your family.

MYTH:  “If I microwave food, the microwaves kill the bacteria, so the food is safe.”

Have you heard that statement before? I have and I have never understood why someone would say that. I mean yeah it heats up your food really fast BUT do they not think about exactly how is it that it is heating up their food and are you sure it’s even cooking it all the way?

Fact: Harmful bacteria may remain harmful if food heats unevenly.

Bacteria doesn’t just up and disappear on it’s own. You need to ensure that you are following the directions of the food that you’re preparing in the microwave. You also need to take precautions such as washing food if it needs it, stirring food occasionally while cooking, rotating your food while cooking to make sure that the food is being cooked throughout.

MYTH:  “I don’t need to use a food thermometer.  I can tell when my food is cooked by looking at it or checking the temperature with my finger.”

FACT: YOU NEED TO USE A FOOD THERMOMETER. Color, texture, and steaming are NOT indicators that a food is safe to eat. The only sure way to know food is safely cooked is to use a food thermometer.

HELLO? Really? This one should be a no brainer. I know when you are pressed for time and rushing around trying to get dinner ready sometimes it’s the most important things that we overlook. This should not be one of them. I never ever cook pork without my handy dandy thermometer. I have read that you can tell just by looking at the juices but for me that isn’t enough for me to feel comfortable. I want to make sure my pork is fully cooked so I am not feeding undercooked meat to my family and risking their health. The great thing about meat thermometers is they are fairly inexpensive. So the next time you go to the store pick up one, or two, or five. Keep them in a drawer next to your stove so they are readily available next time you cook meat.

Below is a handy dandy printout for you. Print it out and hang it on your fridge for quick reference while cooking food for your family. If you’re like me and cooking is a passion, one that you plan/hope to pass down to your children, you might like to be educated in making sure your cooking is doing more good then harm, then you might want to check out Food Safety and Fightback to educate yourself on popular food myths and safety. 

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