COMMENTS FROM CHERYL
This time of year there are lots of holiday gatherings with a variety of food items. Food safety may not be on the minds of everyone, but it can become a major problem during the holiday season if you forget. Always think food safety when planning, preparing, serving and storing food, but take special care during the holiday season.
First, plan foods for your party that you can keep at the correct temperature throughout the serving time. Remember that hot foods must be kept at 140 degrees F. and cold foods must be kept at 40 degrees F. Any food left out at room temperature for two hours or more should be discarded.
Next when you are preparing the food items, make sure you clean and sanitize equipment and work areas. Also, remember to keep your hands clean throughout the preparation process. If you are handling raw meat, make sure you wash your hands prior to handling other foods. Don’t cross contaminant foods with your hands or equipment.
Serving foods in small containers and keeping the food at the correct temperature is important. The small containers can be replaced with new containers from time to time so you never go past the two hours at room tempera- ture rule. If you have lef tovers af ter the party, you must store them properly. Store foods in covered containers or storage bags. Divide the food into small containers and don’t over load your refrigerator. Your food should cool down to 40 degrees or less within four hours. If you overload your refrigerator during the holiday season, it will have a hard time keeping your food safe.
Remember to plan foods for your holiday parties that you can safely prepare and serve. Don’t risk making your friends and family sick during the holdiays or anytime of the year. For more information on food safety concerns, contact the Milam County Extension Office.
FR EDER ICK SBU RG TOUR—Anyone is welcome to join us for a day in downtown Fredericksburg. The chartered bus will leave Cameron at 8:30 a.m. and arrive back in Cameron about 11:30 p.m. This is a great opportunity for you to get in the Christmas spirit and have a fun day with friends. You have shops, galleries and boutiques along with the Pacific War Museum to fill your day along with lots of great food choices.
The day trip to Fredericksburg offers two special activities. First the St. Nikolausmarkt in the downtown square will showcase a variety of craft, food and art booths. We will end the day with the lighted Christmas Parade. The parade is a great way to catch the Christmas spirit. The cost of the trip is $40 per person. Contact the Milam County Extension office if you have questions or need additional information, 254-697-7045 or firstname.lastname@example.org
HOLIDAY GIFT IDEA EXCHANGE—This year will mark the 19th year of the Holiday Gift Idea Exchange conducted by the Milam County 4-H. Year after year, 4-Hers demonstrate holiday gift, decoration and food ideas to give you a new idea for the season. The program is free and open to all interested persons.
On Monday, Nov. 18 the Holiday Gift Idea Exchange will be conducted at Bea’s Kitchen in Cameron. The event will run from 6:30 p.m. thourgh 8:30 p.m.
Youwillseeavarietyof demonstrations, get handouts with instructions for the projects and enjoy refreshments and door prizes.
For more information contact Milam County Extension office at 254-697-7045 or email@example.com.