Going to bar and grill restaurants (like Buzzard Billy's) is one of the most popular ways to enjoy a delicious meal. These types of restaurants usually serve a variety of different dishes that the entire family can enjoy. However, since bar and grill restaurants do grill a lot of the items on the menu, there is often a wide selection of meats that are served. To prevent food borne illnesses special precautions need to be taken to ensure the meats are stored and prepared correctly. These are some important food safety rules that those who run bar and grill restaurants should follow.
When storing in the refrigerator, meats should be kept at a temperature of 40 degrees or lower. Fresh poultry, sausage and ground meats can be safely stored in a refrigerator for 1-2 days. Fresh beef, lamb, veal and pork can be stored in a refrigerator for up to 5 days. Bacon can be refrigerated for up to 7 days.
When storing meats in a freezer, meats should be kept at a temperature of 0 degrees or lower. Bacon and sausage can remain frozen for a month. Whole poultry can be safely stored in a freezer for one year. Ground meats can be frozen for 3 to 4 months. Fresh beef, pork, lamb and veal can be frozen on average for about 6 months. However, this may be longer if the meat is cut into pieces.
Thawing and Handling Meats
Be sure to thaw frozen meats thoroughly before grilling. This can be done by thawing them in the refrigerator or by defrosting them in a microwave ahead of time before they will need to be grilled. This will help the meat to cook through more evenly when it is grilled.
Always wash hands thoroughly before and after handling raw meats. Wear plastic gloves during meat preparation and cooking. Never use the same plates for holding raw and cooked meats. This can transfer dangerous bacteria from raw meats to the cooked meats.
Cooking and Grilling Meats
Raw meats, such as beef, pork, veal and lamb should be cooked or grilled until they reach an internal temperature of 140 degrees. However, ground meats need to reach a temperature of 160 degrees on a food thermometer before serving. Poultry should be cooked or grilled to a temperature of 165 degrees. When grilling meats, watch them closely to ensure they are not getting done more quickly on the outside then on the inside.
Some diners may prefer to have their meats grilled extremely rare. However, it is best to be cautious about how rare you serve these meats so that food borne illnesses can better be avoided.