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Memorial Day Leftovers: Edible or Garbage?

Memorial Day Leftovers: Edible or Garbage?
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By    |   Friday, 27 May 2016 11:47 AM

Memorial Day Weekend means barbecues, pool parties, and subsequently, tons of leftovers. But cleaning up after the party is over and everyone’s gone, do you keep the remaining food for later after a day in the sun and heat, or do you throw it out?

To avoid sickness, here are some tips from Liz Weinandy, a dietician from Ohio State University, on what to do with your leftover food:
  • One of the most common causes of food poisoning is leftovers that have been out in the sun for much too long. To guard against it, be sure to refrigerate those burgers and hot dogs within two hours of setting them out for guests to eat. If the temperature outside rises above 90 degrees, cut that time in half.
  • Another way to prevent bacteria from growing on your food is to keep cold foods cold and hot foods hot. The ideal way to keep foods cold is to put them in shallow containers and kept on ice, holding the temperature below 40 degrees. For hot foods, make sure the temperature stays about 160 degrees.
  • When checking to see if foods have been cooked all the way through, don’t guestimate. Use a thermometer to make sure that the temperatures of ground meats like hamburgers are cooked to at least 160 degrees, and that poultry like chicken is cooked to 165 degrees.
  • Cross contamination is another problem to look out for, but it can be avoided by using separate cutting boards, tongs, utensils, and plates for all the raw and cooked foods. Also, any item that touches raw food must be sanitized before being used again.
To keep all of this information on hand while preparing for your BBQ, you can download the Home Food Safety app www.homefoodsafety.org/appon your phone for easy access at any time during the party.

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Are Memorial Day barbecue leftovers safe to eat? Here's how to avoid becoming a victim of holiday food poisoning.
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Friday, 27 May 2016 11:47 AM
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