Tag: food safety

Wait, the Five-Second Rule Is Real?

by in News, March 12th, 2014

The Five-Second RuleYou, like everyone else, have probably always assumed the “five-second rule,” which posits that food dropped on the floor is fine to eat if it gets snatched up right away, is an urban myth. Until now, the studies have backed up your skepticism.

But this week biologists at Aston University, in Birmingham, England, have released the results of a study they say proves the rule actually holds true. The researchers measured the transfer of common bacteria from various floor types (carpet, tile and laminate) onto dropped toast, pasta, cookies and sticky sweets in time periods ranging from 3 to 30 seconds, and they concluded that time was a “significant factor in the transfer of bacteria from a floor surface to a piece of food.” The type of flooring, as well as the moistness of the food, also played a role.

As it turns out, carpeted surfaces were found to be less likely to transmit bacteria onto food, whereas if you splat your spaghetti on your tiled kitchen floor and take your time scraping it back up again — uh — don’t reach for your fork.

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How to Store Thanksgiving Leftovers

by in Holidays, How-to, November 24th, 2011

refrigeratorLeftovers are practically guaranteed after a meal as large as Thanksgiving dinner. In my house, we ensure them by making a small, extra turkey and several batches of stuffing, so that everyone can take some home. But beyond making turkey sandwiches and soup, what can you do with all of that extra meat and how should you use up those spare potatoes and vegetables? We have the answers, plus helpful tips on how to safely store leftovers and inventive recipes for next-day dishes.

Shelf Life: Though there’s no reason to rush through Thanksgiving dinner in order to get the leftovers in the fridge, it is best to start packaging them within two hours of the meal. In general, most leftovers can be kept in the refrigerator for up to four days. Frozen leftovers, however, are best within 2-3 months, though they’ll remain safe to eat forever, so long as they are kept at 0 degrees F.

Unstuff the Stuffing: If you chose to stuff your turkey, remember to unstuff it before storing. Scoop it out of the cavity of the bird and keep it in one container, and put the carved meat and each of your side dishes in their own separate containers.

Follow these easy food safety tips »

Summer Food Safety: Mayonnaise

by in How-to, July 1st, 2011

mayo with knife
During the latest “Ask the Editor” chat on Food Network’s Facebook page, many readers inquired about mayonnaise in salads and how long they can be left out during summer months. With Fourth of July celebrations upon us, it’s important to practice food safety –you don’t want your guests missing the fireworks because they’re not feeling well. Even if you place Grandma’s famous potato salad in the shade, it has a timely expiration.

So how long is too long?

Read the rules after the jump »