Daily Health Tips: Food Hygiene

As we enter the last few days of the count down to Christmas, let’s remind ourselves of some cardinal hygiene rules for the kitchen (which will witness a lot of action in the next few days :D).

Whether you’re going to have fish, beef or chicken, here are five issues you need to know about food hygiene:

• Eggs. These are at the root of more than 30 percent of food poisoning cases. So get your children to stay off them. If you’ve got children like mine, it may not be as easy as it sounds especially when you’ve mixed up a batch of cakes and are trying to convince them that the batter they desperately want to lick off the bowl is not healthy! Ensure that egg dishes eg French toasts (when you choose to indulge), custards etc are well cooked with no hint of raw eggs. The risk of salmonella infection is ever so real.
• Chicken. Poultry usually harbours the salmonella infection but because this meat is usually cooked before eating, it may not be a problem. However, cross contamination by using the same chopping board or work surface used to prepare chicken to prepare other foods could lead to a salmonella infection. This is also the case if the chicken is stored in the fridge in direct contact with other foods. Use different work surfaces for raw meets and other foods and please separate from other foods when storing in the freezer.

• Raw or slightly cooked fish. Worms in raw fish can survive in the intestines of man and cause infections. Thus fish has to be properly cooked. All you sushi lovers please pay attention . Appropriate cooking methods include grilling and poaching. You know that way most people fry their fish until it sounds and feels like plantain chips when you’re eating it ? Well, that certainly will destroy any worm in the fish but is not healthy for you. Sounds like you can’t win, yeah?

• Raw or partially cooked meat. Provided meat is not minced, any surface contamination of the meat is easily eliminated by cooking. However, minced meat requires that the meat be cooked thoroughly all the way through. Lovers of tartar which are raw meat dishes should be especially wary. Wooden chopping boards are discouraged as cuts on them form rich reservoirs for germs.

• Fruits and vegetables are not common sources of food contamination but could get contaminated if prepared on a contaminated surface or if not in optimal quality when eaten. So be careful

So please make sure that you obey the cardinal rules of hygiene in the kitchen as in every other part of your life. WE must not forget to wash our hands thoroughly before we start cooking too. That saying that germ no dey kill African man, is totally obsolete now. Have a great day and an amazing week, people 😀

Here’s to a healthier you!

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