Cooking Up Good Health

Articles
October 04, 2010

Cooking Up Good Health

Food safety goes well beyond proper storage. Proper cooking techniques and cooking temperatures are essential in protecting your family from food-borne illnesses.

Food safety goes well beyond proper storage. Proper cooking techniques and cooking temperatures are essential in protecting your family from food-borne illnesses.

Here are some best practices to remember:

• For meat, poultry and other dishes, use a food thermometer to make sure foods are cooked to a safe internal temperature. When cooking a whole turkey, use a food thermometer to check the internal temperature in the innermost part of the thigh. The internal temperature should reach a minimum of 180 degrees Fahrenheit. It is recommended to cook stuffing outside the bird. Meats like pork and beef should be cooked to 170 degrees Fahrenheit.

• Cook eggs until the yolks and whites are firm, or reach 160 degrees Fahrenheit on a food thermometer. Don’t use recipes in which eggs remain raw or only partially cooked. Cook egg dishes until they reach 160 degrees Fahrenheit.

• Cook fish until it’s opaque and flakes easily with a fork.

• When microwaving, make sure there are no cold spots in food (where bacteria can survive). For best results, cover, stir and rotate food for even cooking. If there’s no turntable, rotate the dish by hand once or twice during cooking.

• When reheating sauces, soups and gravies, bring them to a boil. Heat other leftovers thoroughly to 165 degrees Fahrenheit.

 

Proper Cooking Temperatures and Times 
PRODUCT SAFE TEMPERATURE

Ground Meat & Meat Mixtures
Turkey, Chicken 170°F
Veal, Beef, Lamb, Pork 160°F

Fresh Beef
Medium 160°F
Well-done 170°F

Fresh Veal
Medium 160°F
Well-done 170°F

Fresh Lamb
Medium 160°F
Well-done 170°F

Fresh Pork
Medium 160°F
Well-done 170°F

Poultry
Chicken, whole 180°F
Turkey, whole 180°F
Poultry breasts, roasts 170°F
Poultry thighs, wings Cook until juices run clear
Stuffing 
(cooked alone or in bird) 165°F
Duck & Goose 180°F

Ham
Fresh (raw) 160°F
Precooked (to reheat) 140°F

Seafood
Shrimp 5 minutes boiling
Fish Till flaky
Clams 5-10 minutes, steamed
Oysters 5 minutes