The Super Bowl is right around the corner.
No matter what you’ll eat on Sunday evening, you need to be cognizant of some simple food safety procedures.
Serve Hot Foods Hot
- If you are planning to serve hot dishes, use a thermometer to be sure they are cooked to a proper internal temperature.
- Hot foods can be kept in a warm oven (set at 200Â° – 250Â° F) until serving (they may dry out if kept in the oven more than an hour, so cover tightly with aluminum foil).
- Donâ€™t let perishable foods sit out for more than 2 hours.
- Hot foods can be prepared in advance and stored in the refrigerator until game time. When your guests arrive, reheat the food to an internal temperature of 165Â° F.
- Once served, hot foods should be kept at 140Â° F or warmer. Use chafing dishes, slow cookers, and warming trays on the buffet table to keep foods warm.
Keep Cold Foods Cold
- Cold foods need to be held at 40Â° F or colder. Keep cold dishes in the refrigerator until just before serving.
- Once served, keep foods cold by nesting dishes in bowls of ice.
General Safety Tips
- Don’t let hot or cold foods sit at room temperature for more than two hours.
- Keep track of how long foods have been sitting on the buffet table and discard any perishable foods that have been sitting out for two hours or more.
- Arrange and serve food on several small platters rather than on one large platter so that most of the food can stay hot or cold longer.
- Always serve food on clean plates or use disposable plates.
- Rather than refilling platters of food, replace empty platters rather than adding fresh food to a dish that that’s been sitting with food in it.
Donâ€™t Forget to Wash Your Hands!
No matter what the time of year, hand washing is key to stopping both the spread of germs and food borne illness. Be sure to wash your hands before and after handling any party food and encourage your guests to do so as well.
These tips come from NSF International, a nonprofit public health and safety organizations.
© 2011 – 2013, Tara Ziegmont. All rights reserved.