Good hygiene in the kitchen reduces the risk of spreading bacteria that can give you food poisoning. In addition, the food lasts longer which means reduced food waste! Perfect, let´s go and wash our hands!
For many different reasons, there may be bacteria, viruses and parasites in our food. Some bacteria are added, such as in milk and cheese, for example. It can also be found naturally in the food. Some bacteria do not affect the food, others destroy it and some bacteria make us sick. The most common reason for us getting sick from food is poor hygiene in the kitchen.
As we all know, we throw away too much food and drink that could actually be eaten or drank. By handling the food in a hygienic way you can both reduce the risk of becoming ill and unnecessarily destroy the food. Being careful about the hygiene in the kitchen helps to reduce food waste, contribute to a better environment and to keep you healthy.
Before you start to shine with your awesome cooking skills in the kitchen, think one more time about your hygiene and how you handle your ingredients. When you come home from the store and have bought all the tasty ingredients for today’s meal, do not set up the bag on the kitchen counter. It may have been on the floor both in the store and in the car and is probably full of bacteria.
Make sure you wash the kitchen sink thoroughly before you start. The kitchen counter easely becomes an area where keys, mail and a little bit of everything can end up? When washing and drying the surface, make sure you have a clean cloth! The dishcloth is very likely to turn into a colony of bacteria very quickly. Instead of changing the dishcloth every day, for example, you can cook it to get rid of the bacteria.
Wash your hands
We start with the most important thing, wash your hands! Hand washing with soap and water is our best defense against the spread of eg. stomachflu. Make sure the towel you are drying on is clean, otherwise use paper. Use of hand disinfection after hand washing with soap and water can further reduce the number of microorganisms. Also, make sure to patch on yourself when you have ulcers or eczema on your hands, disposable gloves may be good for covering the damaged skin, but it is still important to have good hand hygiene.
Take care of your gear
Wash and dry knives, cooking utensils and cutting boards carefully when cutting or handling raw meat, fish and poultry before using the utensils to prepare foods that should not be heated, such as salad and vegetables, for example. Even better is to actually have different cutting boards for different raw materials.
Different materials are different easy to get clean. Stainless steel knives and surfaces are easier to clean than plastic and wood. Glass and ceramics are believed to be midway between stainless steel and plastic. Dishcloths are most difficult to get completely clean if they are not cooked or washed in the machine.
Your raw ingredients
Vegetables can be contaminated through irrigation, soil, manure, handling or contact with contaminated material. Always rinse the vegetables under running water or water bath. Although not all microorganisms disappear, the number decreases and the risk of getting sick do too.
Refrigerated goods should enter the refrigerator quickly
Be sure to set everything to cool in the refrigerator at once when you get home from the store. Storage temperature is of great importance for how quickly bacteria multiply. Storage of refrigerated products at four degrees causes microorganisms to proliferate so slowly that food lasts for a long time and the risk of becoming ill is small.
Of course, you stay far away from the kitchen counter if you have or have recently had stomach illness!
When you are or have recently been stomach sick, it is more likely that there are bacteria, viruses or parasites on your hands which can cause others who eat from the food to become ill. Sometimes a small number of pathogenic bacteria, viruses or parasites may be transferred to edible food to make another person sick.
Have a nice meal!
Now we have ensured that hands, workspace and tools are clean and that our goods have been handled properly. Then the only thing left to say is, Bon appetite!