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cooling food before putting in the fridge

Posted by katherine 
my sister in law is here on holiday from uk ,she has recently puchased a new fridge and the instructions say to cool food down before putting in the fridge ,we said ,leaving chicken etc out to cool down invites all sorts of bugs to grow ,we always put food to cool down in the fridge ,are we right or wrong?
Raewyn G
Re: cooling food before putting in the fridge
December 16, 2004 10:43AM
Cooling food as quickly as possible and cooling before putting into the fridge or freezer is a must.
An easy way to remember is that food should not be stored at between 4 and 60oC for longer than 2 hours, before it is not safe.
If it makes sense to you, by putting hot food in the fridge you are warming up the whole unit and making your fridge work over time and risking other food which is stored there.
Always remember to store raw meat BELOW cooked meat. This is to stop the risk of raw meat juices coming in contact with cooked meats.
Always cover all food to avoid cross-contamination.
I hope I have made this clear for you.
Good luck with your food safety, especially over the summer and the holidays
Raewyn Gsmiling smiley
Yes.... you must always cool food as quickly as poss before refrigerating and if you are re-heating do so at around 200 C for 15 mins. which should kill any nasties.
Re: cooling food before putting in the fridge
December 16, 2004 12:13PM
Things like cooked meat cool off pretty fast anyway, so a short time on the bench is usually enough, before putting it in the fridge.

Other things, like soup, take awhile longer to cool down. I always cover them while they're cooling on the bench.
Raewyn G
Re: cooling food before putting in the fridge
December 16, 2004 06:26PM
In the food business we always put soups or other prepared things into dishes or containers no higher than 4" and it coooools quickly. Or you can stand your pot in cold water. This helps to cool it down. May need to change the water a couple of times though as naturally it heats up with the heat from the pot.
As Jennifer has said, covering is important. We have at work alot of freshly laundered throw overs, made from net curtaining offcuts, and hemmed with a fancy edging.
I will locate all the temperatures for reheating food if you are interested. But unless you have a temperature probe or the like then these are probably not alot of use to you. It is important to remember that with reheating food, that it is piping hot, right through to the centre of the food. A quick zap to warm in the microwave is not sufficient to kill the nasties. Please remember too.......REHEAT FOOD ONLY ONCE!!!!
I sincerely hope that this information is of help to you Katherine and others.
Kind Regards,
Raewynsmiling smiley
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