Photo by Matt MacGillivray Lots of mysteries lurking at the average grocery store
There are a lot of misconceptions and myths floating around in our world today about the things we like to eat and drink. I hear a lot of strange "rules" at the grocery store where I work, and of course from people I know outside of my job. Here are a few that I think are pretty interesting.
Photo by Loozrboy I guess this is one way to avoid contaminating your kitchen
6. You must wash chicken before cooking it.
I've heard this since I was a kid. Uncooked chicken is dirty and needs to be thoroughly washed before it is cooked. Is this true? The answer is "No!" And, in fact, it's a really bad idea.
Cooking chicken to proper temperature will destroy bacteria, but washing a dead uncooked bird in your kitchen is asking for trouble, since any dangerous bacteria present can easily be sloshed all over other surfaces in the kitchen, landing on prep areas, other food, or your own skin. So, no, rinsing a chicken off before cooking it is a very bad idea that actually worsens the problem it's supposed to help.
Photo by Steven Depolo Delicious meal or clever strategy to sell meat before it's inedible?
5. Markets pre-marinate meat to disguise the fact that it's going bad.
Customers ask me about this this all the time when they see that we have marinated beef and chicken for sale. So do meat markets marinate items in order to disguise the fact that the item is getting old? The answer is:
A huge part of running a successful meat business is managing product freshness. Not to sound gross, but from the time an animal is slaughtered, its meat begins to decay. There are procedures every step of the way from slaughter to the store that help to slow the rate of decomposition, but no meat market manager wants to just throw away hundreds of dollars of meat because it didn't sell fast enough, and is starting to rot. So what do they do? Well, there are lots of things that they might try. Freezing overstock is one technique, another is putting a product on sale if the amount they have on hand exceeds normal demand.
Then there are other ways, making sausage being a huge one. Adding a sausage cure to meat that's nearing its expiration prolongs its edibility.
Or they might marinate certain cuts that aren't "rotting" to the point of being inedible, but that don't look as fresh as they might have a day earlier.
I've never worked anywhere that would knowingly sell customers rotting meat, and good market management should avoid having lots of overstocked product laying around getting old anyway. The only time that I've ever marinated meat at a place I've worked, it was all very fresh, but I can't speak for everyone.!--break-->More »