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Food Safety Smarts

  • Cook or freeze ground beef the day you buy it. Raw or cooked ground beef can be frozen for up to 3 months.

  • Never thaw ground beef at room temperature. Thaw in the fridge, allowing 12-15 hours per lb (26-33 hours per kg). Cook microwave- thawed ground beef immediately. Thawed ground beef must be cooked before refreezing.

  • Never eat ground beef rare – cook ground beef thoroughly to 160°F (71°C). Ground beef can look done (i.e. no longer be pink inside) before being completely cooked. Use a digital rapid-read thermometer to know your burger is safe and cooked to perfection! Just remember: “Your burger’s done at 71!”

Two colourful questions:

  • I cooked a burger to 71°C but it was still pink inside – why? Several factors can affect the colour of ground beef causing it to remain pink even when fully cooked. For more information visit www.beefinfo.org.

  • Why is the ground beef at the centre of my package dark purple while the surface is bright red? As beef is exposed to oxygen, it naturally develops a red hue. The meat in the centre will turn red once it’s opened up to the air.

Questions about beef? Visit www.beefinfo.org or call 1-888-248-BEEF.

GBCF-10-03

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