TIPS BY TALLYRAND
food poisoning cases occur from harmful bacteria in
the foods we eat. To understand how to control bacteria
we must first understand what bacteria require for growth
or to multiply.
are asexual and multiply by a process called 'binary
division'. This means that under the right conditions
they will split into two. For this process to take place
37ºC (98.6ºF) which is our body temperature
: if all of the above is in place, bacteria will multiply
every 20 minutes.
that they do not require oxygen to survive, in fact
many pathogens thrive in air tight conditions, i.e.
clostridium botulinum, so if not properly sterilised,
bottled vegetables, canned goods etc can also be source
of pathogens. Great care must be taken when producing
home made bottled goods, preserves etc. In ideal conditions,
a single bacteria can multiply in 24 hours to:
remember we are never talking about a single bacteria,
but millions! With 3 million of them fitting on a pinhead!
Which should make you think twice about eating that
food you left standing on the stove overnight !
by understanding their requirements to multiply, we
can look at how to control or destroy them. Basically
if we remove one of their requirements we are on our
way to control them, if we remove more than one we are
on our way to destroying them. Lets look at this in
detail . . .
most important of the bacteria requirements is the warmth
or temperature they require. If we control our temperatures
in the kitchen we can control the bacteria growth or
bacteria in food
The temperature that freezers should be running at.
Freezing does not destroy bacteria, pathogens
or their toxins and spores. In a freezer bacteria
are merely in a state of suspended animation or a
hibernation state. They will not multiply, but nor
will they die.
to 4ºC (32º to 39ºF):
The temperature that refrigerators/chillers should
be running at. Chilling food does not destroy bacteria,
pathogens or their toxins and spores. In a chiller
bacteria merely slow down their rate of reproduction
to a virtual stop, they will however continue to multiply,
all be it very slowly
Most bacteria will start to die at this temperature
The internal temperature of foods should reach this
to ensure any bacteria has been destroyed. To achieve
this solid foods such as roast meats and steaks need
to be thoroughly cooked until the juices run clear
(no signs of blood). Liquid style foods such as sauces,
soups and stews etc should be brought to a boil (while
stirring) and simmered for a minimum of three minutes.
reheat foods more than once or the bacteria in the
food will not only multiply as the food is cooled
down and stored, but they will also become heat resistant.
Bacteria are capable of producing spores; this heat
resistant shell will resist the most ardent cooking
temperatures and food poisoning is inevitable.
is the temperature zone at which bacteria will multiply:
5ºC to 65ºC (32ºF to 149ºF). When food is held within
this zone, bacteria will multiply and could end up being
a problem and cause food poisoning. To ensure this doesn't
a chilly bin with you when shopping to place ant chilled
or frozen foods in to transport home.
your shopping so that any other chores are completed
first: checking your mail box, clothes shopping, coffee
or lunch, visiting friends etc . . . always go straight
home after grocery shopping.
chilled and frozen foods away as soon as you arrive
fresh meats or fish in the refrigerator until just
before you need it and ensure it is covered (to stop
flies etc landing on it)
you go on a picnic or have a bbq, ensure the food
is kept in a chilly bin with ice to keep it chilled.
foods in a sealed covered container, slowly in the refrigerator,
DO NOT leave defrosting on the kitchen bench overnight.
foods in the refrigerator
all raw meats below cooked foods (preferably on the
all raw meats in sealed containers (both of these
points will prevent any blood dripping onto foods
all raw meats and fish separately; do not mix poultry
and beef for example in the same container.
all fruit and vegetables, dairy products and foods
that require no further cooking away from all raw
meats and fish
clean your refrigerator as needed (at least once a
bacteria on work surfaces (benches, knives etc)
towels are PUBLIC ENEMY No. 1!! The moment a tea-towel
is used for drying dishes etc it is 'unclean'. Further
use of it will only help spread bacteria.
of heat: the best method to control and destroy bacteria
is the application of heat, however the following points
must be considered:
heat is far more effective than dry heat; it destroys
the pathogens far quicker
in excess of 70ºC must be used; however above 80ºC
is preferred and will be safer
disinfecting and sanitising with hot water is far
more effective and quicker than using chemicals (and
are many commercial and retail chemicals available to
banish bacteria from your work surfaces. They all no
doubt do what they claim they will, but using water
at the correct temperature will do the job not only
better, but also quicker and cheaper. Common chemicals
used for cleaning are:
unless they have an anti-bacterial agent are used
to remove grease and dirt, by forming an emulsion
between them and the water.
used to reduce the levels of bacteria to a safe level
will eliminate most bacteria
you do decide to use chemicals remember these points:
only in the manufacturer's recommended amounts
only in the manufacturer's recommended water temperature
(too cold or too hot can render the chemical useless)
only as per the manufacturer's instructions: most
require being left on the surface for an hour or so
to be effective
will require being rinsed off after being left on
the surface for required amount of time or they will
contaminate your foods
far the most effective method of destroying bacteria
is cleaning with water at the correct temperature, especially
as it will clean and disinfect or sanitise at the same
time. Cancelling the need for purchasing and using chemicals.
temperature must be as hot as possible
(176ºF) for disinfecting
(212ºF) for sanitising
by washing work benches, etc with soap and water (at
boiling point) will not only remove all dirt and grease
but will destroy any bacteria.
EFFICIENT, CHEAP AND GOOD FOR THE ENVIROMENT Which has
got to be good for all of us!!
hand washing is an important step in eliminating food
poisoning cases. Hands should be washed in as hot as
water as the hands can stand, with soap and a nail brush.
They should be dried with paper towels, roller towels
or hot air blower.
should you wash your hands?
touching your hair
touching any part of your face
blowing your nose
visiting the bathroom
handling raw meats and fish
handling chemicals (cleaning agents etc)
between changing tasks: between handling raw meats
and cutting cooked meats, between handling raw fish
and cutting fruits and veg etc
All equipment for these tasks should also be thoroughly
contamination: "The contamination of safe foods
from unsafe foods via a vehicle". By following
all of the above should eliminate the possibility of
contaminating your nice fresh, clean foods with bacteria
from unsafe foods and minimise your chances of getting
related recipe this week
and raised in Plymouth, Tallyrand started his initial
training as a chef at Plymouth College of Further Education.
It was here that he was to learn his love, his passion
for food and the culinary arts. From here he headed
to Germany to complete his apprenticeship as Commis
gave him his first taste of cooking for the rich and
famous, as half way through his first year, along with
the Sous Chef and a Chef de Partie, he was whisked off
to Cologne to help prepare meals for a political conference,
where amongst other dignitaries they cooked for Mr Brehznev,
the then powerful Russian leader. This was to prove
to be just one of the many celebrities he was to cook
for or get to know over the years . . .
you would like to find out more why not visit Tallyrand's
own web site www.tallyrand.info (link in main menu)
Email Hub-UK : firstname.lastname@example.org