From HealthNewsDigest.com

Food and Nutrition
Food Safety Tips for a Winning Super Bowl Party
By
Feb 1, 2018 - 8:20:08 AM

(HealthNewsDigest.com) - UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Super Bowl Sunday is like a holiday, with family and friends gathering to watch the big game and, of course, sharing many tasty foods. Other than Thanksgiving, more food is consumed on this day than any other day of the year. About 48 million Americans order takeout food for the game while consuming about 1.3 billion chicken wings.

But without good food safety practices in play before, during and after the game, some Super Bowl revelers might end up feeling much worse than fans of the losing team, according to Sharon McDonald, senior extension educator and food safety specialist in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences.

McDonald offers advice and recommendations for party hosts and attendees to avoid being penalized with foodborne illness.

"When preparing food, be sure to start with clean hands, work surfaces and utensils," she said. "Always wash fresh fruits and vegetables under running water before preparing foods. This even includes food you are peeling, like those avocados for your guacamole."

McDonald notes that one thing you do not want to wash are chicken wings. "Rinsing meat or poultry under running water results in splashing of water droplets onto other surfaces, kitchen utensils or food, causing contamination with harmful microorganisms," she warned.

If you are cooking food, she said, be sure to check the final cooked temperature with a food thermometer. Color is never a reliable indicator of safety or doneness. Meat dishes should be cooked to the following temperatures:

"For wings especially, take the temperature of several wings in a batch by placing a clean food thermometer in the thickest part of the wing, avoiding the bone," McDonald said. "If one wing is under 165 F, continue cooking until reaching the correct temperature in all the wings checked."

Since Super Bowl parties tend to be all-day affairs, she stressed the importance of monitoring temperatures so that food is not sitting in the temperature danger zone (40 F to 140 F) for longer than two hours.

"Putting food out in small batches is a good idea," McDonald said. "Use chafing dishes for wings and burgers; crockpots for chili, buffalo chicken, spinach or artichoke dips; and use a cold source like a bowl of ice below lunch meats, cheeses, fruit salad and other salads.

"At halftime do a temperature check on foods to be sure hot foods are at a temperature of 140 F or higher and cold food is at 40 F or lower. If they are not at proper temperatures and it has been less than two hours, then reheat or rechill, and if it's been more than two hours then discard. Also, have a serving utensil for each item and plenty of paper plates so everyone can use a clean plate when getting more food."

After the game, the party may continue if your team was the winner, or it may come to an abrupt end if the score went the other way. In either case, McDonald said, continue to keep food safety in mind as you take care of the leftovers:

Finally, be sure to reheat any leftovers to 165 F and check the temperature with a food thermometer. "For sauces, soups, chili or gravy bring to a rolling boil," McDonald said. "Do not reheat in a slow cooker — it is not designed for that. Rather, reheat foods on the stove or in the microwave or oven."

For more information, visit Penn State Extension's Home Food Safety website.

###



© Copyright by HealthNewsDigest.com