Food Safety for the Holidays PLEASE BE SAFE!!

  • Some of the links on this forum allow SMF, at no cost to you, to earn a small commission when you click through and make a purchase. Let me know if you have any questions about this.
SMF is reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.

pops6927

Gone but not forgotten. RIP
Original poster
OTBS Member
SMF Premier Member
Jul 23, 2008
7,245
1,219
Fort Worth, Tx.
http://www.fsis.usda.gov/wps/portal...ling/basics-for-handling-food-safely/CT_Index

[h1]United States Department of Agriculture[/h1] 
Food Safety and Inspection Service




Topics  / Food Safety Education  / Get Answers  / Food Safety Fact Sheets  / Safe Food Handling  / Basics for Handling Food Safely  / Basics for Handling Food Safely


123

[h3]Basics for Handling Food Safely[/h3]
 
Safe steps in food handling, cooking, and storage are essential to prevent foodborne illness. You can't see, smell, or taste harmful bacteria that may cause illness. In every step of food preparation, follow the four steps of the Food Safe Families campaign to keep food safe:
  • Clean — Wash hands and surfaces often.
  • Separate — Don't cross-contaminate.
  • Cook — Cook to the right temperature.
  • Chill — Refrigerate promptly.
http://Shopping
  • Purchase refrigerated or frozen items after selecting your non-perishables.
  • Never choose meat or poultry in packaging that is torn or leaking.
  • Do not buy food past "Sell-By," "Use-By," or other expiration dates.
[Top of Page]

http://Storage
  • Always refrigerate perishable food within 2 hours—1 hour when the temperature is above 90 °F (32.2 ºC).
  • Check the temperature of your refrigerator and freezer with an appliance thermometer. The refrigerator should be at 40 °F (4.4 ºC) or below and the freezer at 0 °F (-17.7 ºC) or below.
  • Cook or freeze fresh poultry, fish, ground meats, and variety meats within 2 days; other beef, veal, lamb, or pork, within 3 to 5 days.
  • Perishable food such as meat and poultry should be wrapped securely to maintain quality and to prevent meat juices from getting onto other food.
  • To maintain quality when freezing meat and poultry in its original package, wrap the package again with foil or plastic wrap that is recommended for the freezer.
  • Canned foods are safe indefinitely as long as they are not exposed to freezing temperatures, or temperatures above 90 °F. If the cans look ok, they are safe to use. Discard cans that are dented, rusted, or swollen. High-acid canned food (tomatoes, fruits) will keep their best quality for 12 to 18 months; low-acid canned food (meats, vegetables) for 2 to 5 years.
[Top of Page]

http://Preparation
  • Always wash hands with warm water and soap for 20 seconds before and after handling food.
  • Don't cross-contaminate. Keep raw meat, poultry, fish, and their juices away from other food. After cutting raw meats, wash cutting board, utensils, and countertops with hot, soapy water.
  • Cutting boards, utensils, and countertops can be sanitized by using a solution of 1 tablespoon of unscented, liquid chlorine bleach in 1 gallon of water.
  • Marinate meat and poultry in a covered dish in the refrigerator.
[Top of Page]

http://Thawing
  • Refrigerator: The refrigerator allows slow, safe thawing. Make sure thawing meat and poultry juices do not drip onto other food.
  • Cold Water: For faster thawing, place food in a leak-proof plastic bag. Submerge in cold tap water. Change the water every 30 minutes. Cook immediately after thawing.
  • Microwave: Cook meat and poultry immediately after microwave thawing.
[Top of Page]

http://Cooking
Cook all raw beef, pork, lamb and veal steaks, chops, and roasts to a minimum internal temperature of 145 °F (62.8 ºC) as measured with a food thermometer before removing meat from the heat source. For safety and quality, allow meat to rest for at least three minutes before carving or consuming. For reasons of personal preference, consumers may choose to cook meat to higher temperatures.

Ground meats:  Cook all raw ground beef, pork, lamb, and veal to an internal temperature of 160 °F (71.1 ºC) as measured with a food thermometer.

Poultry:  Cook all poultry to an internal temperature of 165 °F (73.9 °C) as measured with a food thermometer.

[Top of Page]

http://Serving
  • Hot food should be held at 140 °F (60 °C) or warmer.
  • Cold food should be held at 40 °F (4.4 ºC) or colder.
  • When serving food at a buffet, keep food hot with chafing dishes, slow cookers, and warming trays. Keep food cold by nesting dishes in bowls of ice or use small serving trays and replace them often.
  • Perishable food should not be left out more than 2 hours at room temperature—1 hour when the temperature is above 90 °F (32.2 ºC).
[Top of Page]

http://Leftovers
  • Discard any food left out at room temperature for more than 2 hours—1 hour if the temperature was above 90 °F (32.2 ºC).
  • Place food into shallow containers and immediately put in the refrigerator or freezer for rapid cooling.
  • Use cooked leftovers within 4 days.
  • Reheat leftovers to 165 °F (73.9 °C).
[Top of Page]

http://Refreezing
Meat and poultry defrosted in the refrigerator may be refrozen before or after cooking. If thawed by other methods, cook before refreezing.

[Top of Page]

http://http://Cold Storage Chart
These short, but safe, time limits will help keep refrigerated food from spoiling or becoming dangerous to eat. Because freezing keeps food safe indefinitely, recommended storage times are for quality only.
 
Cold Storage Chart
ProductRefrigerator
40 °F (4.4 ºC)
Freezer
0 °F (-17.7 ºC)
Eggs
Fresh, in shell3 to 5 weeksDo not freeze
Raw yolks & whites2 to 4 days1 year
Hard cooked1 weekDoes not freeze well
Liquid pasteurized eggs, egg substitutes
Opened3 daysDoes not freeze well
Unopened10 days1 year
Mayonnaise, Commercial

Refrigerate after opening
2 monthsDo not freeze
Frozen Dinners & Entrees
Keep frozen until ready to heat3 to 4 months
Deli & Vacuum-Packed Products
Store-prepared (or homemade) egg, chicken, ham, tuna, & macaroni salads3 to 5 daysDoes not freeze well
Hot dogs & Luncheon Meats
Hot dogs
Opened package1 week1 to 2 months
Unopened package2 weeks1 to 2 months
Luncheon meat
Opened package3 to 5 days1 to 2 months
Unopened package2 weeks1 to 2 months
Bacon & Sausage
Bacon7 days1 month
Sausage, raw — from chicken, turkey, pork, beef1 to 2 days1 to 2 months
Smoked breakfast links, patties7 days1 to 2 months
Hard sausage — pepperoni, jerky sticks2 to 3 weeks1 to 2 months
Summer sausage
labeled "Keep Refrigerated"
Opened3 weeks1 to 2 months
Unopened3 months1 to 2 months
Corned Beef
Corned beef, in pouch with pickling juices5 to 7 daysDrained, 1 month
Ham, canned
labeled "Keep Refrigerated"
Opened3 to 5 days1 to 2 months
Unopened6 to 9 monthsDo not freeze
Ham, fully cooked
Vacuum sealed at plant, undated, unopened2 weeks1 to 2 months
Vacuum sealed at plant, dated, unopened"Use-By" date on package1 to 2 months
Whole7 days1 to 2 months
Half3 to 5 days1 to 2 months
Slices3 to 4 days1 to 2 months
Hamburger, Ground & Stew Meat
Hamburger & stew meat1 to 2 days3 to 4 months
Ground turkey, veal, pork, lamb, & mixtures of them1 to 2 days3 to 4 months
Fresh Beef, Veal, Lamb, Pork
Steaks3 to 5 days6 to 12 months
Chops3 to 5 days4 to 6 months
Roasts3 to 5 days4 to 12 months
Variety meats — tongue, liver, heart, kidneys, chitterlings1 to 2 days3 to 4 months
Pre-stuffed, uncooked pork chops, lamb chops, or chicken breasts stuffed with dressing1 dayDoes not freeze well
Soups & Stews
Vegetable or meat added
3 to 4 days2 to 3 months
Fresh Poultry
Chicken or turkey, whole1 to 2 days1 year
Chicken or turkey, pieces1 to 2 days9 months
Giblets1 to 2 days3 to 4 months
Cooked Meat and Poultry Leftovers
Cooked meat & meat casseroles3 to 4 days2 to 3 months
Gravy & meat broth3 to 4 days2 to 3 months
Fried chicken3 to 4 days4 months
Cooked poultry casseroles3 to 4 days4 to 6 months
Poultry pieces, plain3 to 4 days4 months
Poultry pieces in broth, gravy3 to 4 days6 months
Chicken nuggets, patties3 to 4 days1 to 3 months
Other Cooked Leftovers
Pizza, cooked3 to 4 days1 to 2 months
Stuffing, cooked3 to 4 days1 month
[Top of Page]
 

Last Modified Mar 24, 2015

FSIS Home  | USDA.gov  | FoodSafety.gov  | USA.gov  | Whitehouse.gov  | Site Map  | Policies & Links  | Significant Guidance  | FOIA  | Accessibility Statement  | Privacy Policy  |Non-Discrimination Statement  | Civil Rights  | No FEAR  | Information Quality

http://www.fsis.usda.gov/wps/portal...od-handling/smoking-meat-and-poultry/CT_Index

[h1]United States Department of Agriculture[/h1] 
Food Safety and Inspection Service




Topics  / Food Safety Education  / Get Answers  / Food Safety Fact Sheets  / Safe Food Handling  / Smoking Meat and Poultry  / Smoking Meat and Poultry


11

[h3]Smoking Meat and Poultry[/h3]
Where there's smoke, there's well-flavored meat and poultry. Using a smoker is one method of imparting natural smoke flavor to large cuts of meat, whole poultry, and turkey breasts. This slow cooking technique keeps them tender, too.
 
http://What is smoking?
Smoking is slowly cooking food indirectly over a fire. This can be done by using a "smoker," which is an outdoor cooker especially designed for this purpose. A covered grill can also be used for smoking food by placing a drip pan of water beneath the meat on the grill.

[Top of Page]

http://Thaw Meat Before Smoking
Completely thaw meat or poultry before smoking. Because smoking uses low temperatures to cook food, the meat will take too long to thaw in the smoker, allowing it to linger in the "Danger Zone" (temperatures between 40 and 140 °F) where harmful bacteria can multiply. Defrosted meat also cooks more evenly.

Never thaw food at room temperature. Keeping meat and poultry cold while it is thawing is essential to prevent the growth of harmful bacteria. The best way to safely thaw meat and poultry is in the refrigerator. Cook or refreeze it within 1 or 2 days.

The microwave oven can be used to thaw more rapidly. Smoke the meat immediately because some areas of the meat can begin to cook during the thawing process.

Food may also be thawed in cold water. Be sure that the sink or container that holds food is clean before submerging food. Two methods may be used when thawing:
  1. Completely submerge airtight wrapped package. Change water every 30 minutes.
  2. Completely submerge airtight wrapped food in constantly running cold water. If thawed completely, it must be cooked immediately.
[Top of Page]

http://Marinate in the Refrigerator
Some recipes advise marinating meat and poultry for several hours or days, either to tenderize or add flavor. Acid in the marinade breaks down connective tissue in meats.

Always marinate food in the refrigerator, not on the counter. If some of the marinade is to be used for basting during smoking or as a sauce on the cooked food, reserve a portion of the marinade. Don't put raw meat or poultry in it. Don't reuse the marinade from raw meat or poultry on cooked food unless it's boiled first to destroy any harmful bacteria.

[Top of Page]

http://Partial Cooking
Some people like to cook food partially in the microwave oven or on the stove to reduce smoking time. Partially cook meat or poultry ahead of time only if the food goes immediately from the microwave or stove to the hot smoker. Partial cooking of food ahead of time allows harmful bacteria to survive and multiply to the point that subsequent cooking cannot destroy them. And once food is in the smoker, cook until it reaches a safe temperature as determined with a food thermometer.

[Top of Page]

http://Using a Smoker
Cook food in smokers made of materials approved for contact with meat and poultry. Don't smoke foods in makeshift containers such as galvanized steel cans or other materials not intended for cooking. Chemical residue contamination can result.

When using a charcoal-fired smoker, buy commercial charcoal briquettes or aromatic wood chips. Set the smoker in a well-lit, well-ventilated area away from trees, shrubbery, and buildings. Only use approved fire starters — never gasoline or paint thinner, for example.

Follow the manufacturer's directions for igniting charcoal or preheating a gas or electric outdoor cooker. Let the charcoal get red hot with gray ash — about 10 to 20 minutes depending upon the quantity. Pile the charcoal around the drip pan and fill it with water to maintain a moist environment. The drip pan catches any fat or juice from the meat or poultry and prevents it from flaming up on the coals. Add about 15 briquettes every hour and check to make sure the drip pan contains water. The most satisfactory smoke flavor is obtained by using hickory, apple, or maple wood chips or flakes. Soak the chips in water to prevent flare-ups and add about 1/2 cup of chips to the charcoal as desired.

[Top of Page]

http://Using a Covered Grill
To smoke meat and poultry in a covered grill, pile about 50 briquettes in the center of the heat grate. When they are covered with gray ash, push them into two piles. Center a pan of water between the two piles and place the food on the grill over the water pan. The water prevents flare-ups that occur when fat and meat liquids drip on coals, and steam from the water helps destroy harmful bacteria that can cause foodborne illness. Close the lid and keep the grill vents open. Add about 10 briquettes every hour to maintain the temperature in the grill.

[Top of Page]

http://Use Two Thermometers to Smoke Food Safely
To ensure meat and poultry are smoked safely, you'll need two types of thermometers: one for the food and one for the smoker. A thermometer is needed to monitor the air temperature in the smoker or grill to be sure the heat stays between 225 and 300 °F throughout the cooking process. Many smokers have built-in thermometers.

Use a food thermometer to determine the temperature of the meat or poultry. Oven-safe thermometers can be inserted in the meat and remain there during smoking. Use an instant-read thermometer after the meat is taken out of the smoker.

Cooking time depends on many factors: the type of meat, its size and shape, the distance of food from the heat, the temperature of the coals, and the weather. It can take anywhere from 4 to 8 hours to smoke meat or poultry, so it's imperative to use thermometers to monitor temperatures.

Smoke food to a safe minimal internal temperature.
  • Cook all raw beef, pork, lamb and veal steaks, chops, and roasts to a minimum internal temperature of 145 °F as measured with a food thermometer before removing meat from the heat source. For safety and quality, allow meat to rest for at least three minutes before carving or consuming. For reasons of personal preference, consumers may choose to cook meat to higher temperatures.
  • Cook all raw ground beef, pork, lamb, and veal to an internal temperature of 160 °F as measured with a food thermometer.
  • Cook all poultry to a safe minimum internal temperature of 165 °F as measured with a food thermometer.
If using a sauce, apply it during the last 15 to 30 minutes of smoking to prevent excess browning or burning.

[Top of Page]

http://Chill Promptly
Refrigerate meat and poultry within 2 hours of removing it from a smoker. Cut the meat or poultry into smaller portions or slices, place it in shallow containers, cover, and refrigerate. Use it within 4 days or freeze for later use.

[Top of Page]

http://Preventing Foodborne Illness
Follow the four steps of the "Be Food Safe" campaign to prevent foodborne illness throughout the smoking procedure.
  • Clean — Wash hands and surfaces often.
  • Separate — Don't cross-contaminate.
  • Cook — Cook to proper temperatures.
  • Chill — Refrigerate promptly.
[Top of Page]

 

Last Modified Jun 15, 2013

FSIS Home  | USDA.gov  | FoodSafety.gov  | USA.gov  | Whitehouse.gov  | Site Map  | Policies & Links  | Significant Guidance  | FOIA  | Accessibility Statement  | Privacy Policy  |Non-Discrimination Statement  | Civil Rights  | No FEAR  | Information Quality

PLEASE BE SAFE THIS AND ALL HOLIDAYS!
 
I am providing information for those who wonder, not to criticize.
 
I like to be reminded . Thanks for taking the time to inform . I do wonder from time to time , nice to have back up . Thanks again . 
 
SmokingMeatForums.com is reader supported and as an Amazon Associate, we may earn commissions from qualifying purchases.
Clicky