Posts Tagged ‘BBQ’

Cooking out this weekend?

Wednesday, May 24th, 2017

pregnant couple with grocery bagLong holiday weekends are prime time for cookouts and family gatherings. And there’s one activity that can always bring people together – eating! Whether you’re hosting or preparing a side dish, be sure you take precautions in your preparations and in how your dish is served. These tips are especially important for pregnant women.

Before you begin your prep, here’s some tips to ensure your meal is a success:

  • Wash your hands. And then wash all of your fruits and vegetables and cut away any damaged sections.
  • Keep your raw meats and the tools you used to prepare them and keep them separate from the rest of your foods and supplies.
  • Make sure your meats such as hamburgers and grilled chicken are cooked thoroughly.
  • Be sure any salads and dishes with mayonnaise are kept cold and out of the sun.
  • Be sure to put leftovers away quickly – within 2 hours after eating.

Why the extra precaution?

Bacteria from foods can cause Salmonella and Listeriosis, both of which can be harmful to pregnant women.

Listeriosis is a kind of food poisoning caused by Listeria bacteria. This type of bacteria can come from hot dogs, unwashed fruits and vegetables and cold salads.

Salmonella is another kind of food poisoning caused by Salmonella bacteria. You can find this kind of bacteria in undercooked poultry, meat, fish or eggs.

If you’re pregnant, one of these types of food poisoning can cause serious problems for you and your baby, including premature birth, miscarriage and stillbirth. This is why it’s important to prepare your foods properly and serve foods that are safe. Your guests will be sure to thank you for a wonderful cookout and great company.

Have questions about a certain dish you are planning to make? Text or email us at

BBQs and potato salad

Thursday, July 5th, 2012

bbqHave you started to enjoy the fun foods of picnics and BBQs? Independence Day seems to be when my family feels summer is really here. Our grill was fired up yesterday and the freezer was stocked with popsicles. It’s always great to kick back and relax, but it’s also important to remember to keep foods fresh and safe from nasty things like salmonella and e coli.

Things to keep in mind while enjoying summer cookouts are:
• Keep raw meat and poultry separate from cooked or ready-to-eat foods.
• Minimize mayonnaise when you’ll be outside for long periods. I have stopped making potato salad with mayo and now use olive oil and lemon juice instead. It keeps much longer.
• Refrigerate any leftovers a.s.a.p., and never eat cooked food that has been out of the refrigerator longer than two hours.

If you’re pregnant, there are several more things you need to know, like avoiding soft cheeses, raw sprouts and unpasteurized juices, and limiting the amount of certain fish you eat.  Be sure to read more about food-borne risks in pregnancy on our web site.

Happy summer!

Independence Day celebrations

Saturday, July 4th, 2009

fireworksHappy 4th of July!  It may be hot for several reasons.  Will your little tikes be asserting their independence at today’s BBQ?  Keep your cool and the kids covered.  Make sure they drink plenty of water and are slathered in sunscreen.

Have fun with your toddler by putting sunscreen on each other. Don’t forget the feet if you’re likely to be running around barefoot.  And make sure you both wear a hat.  Sunburns hurt! Babies less than six months old should stay out of direct sunlight. Play in the shade of a tree, umbrella or stroller top.

Enjoy the fun foods of the day, remembering to keep raw meat and poultry separate from cooked or ready-to-eat foods. Rinse fruits and vegetables under running tap water before eating, and remove surface dirt with a scrub brush, cutting away any damaged sections, which can contain bacteria. Refrigerate any leftovers promptly, and never eat cooked food that has been out of the refrigerator longer than two hours.  If you’re pregnant, read more about food safety.

Don’t forget that while sparklers are great fun, they’re still dangerous for little kids and should be handled only by adults or older children who know not to wave them in people’s faces.  Keep a great distance from any launch sites and enjoy the fireworks!  (Babies can be frightened by the loud bangs that can hurt their ears.  You may want to move indoors or to your car to watch from the windows.)

Have fun!

5 things for Father’s Day that won’t break the bank

Monday, June 15th, 2009

dadHere are five ways you and the kids can honor Dad on his special day without hurting the budget.  You’ll all have fun and Dad should be please with the attention.

1 – Wash his car – Put some soapy water in a bucket and hand the tots some rages.  They’ll have a blast slopping suds around while you clean the windows inside.  Just make sure you know who has control of the hose.

2 – Take Dad fishing.  Grab some poles and head for a lake, stream or pier.  Or, if none of you are into catching fish, how about going to an aquarium to watch them swim?

3 –  Call a few of his buddies and arrange for a “guys night out.”  You keep the small fry at home and he goes out for pizza and a game of hoops, or a bike ride or a sci fi movie.

4 – Plan a BBQ.  What’s Dad’s favorite grill food?  Burgers, hot dogs, steak, fish, chicken, portobello mushroom burgers, grilled veggies?  No grill?  Cook one of his favorite meals and have the kids make “placemats” with sheets of blank paper and a box of crayons.

5 – Write up a “Get Out of Jail Free” card for him to use whenever he wants.  He can skip the dishes, or taking the trash out, or picking up an older child from a friend’s house, or mowing the lawn one day.  It’s up to him to choose what and when – you just need to honor it when he wants to cash in.

Keep it safe-BBQ tips

Thursday, May 22nd, 2008

Memorial Day is the traditional start of summer. What are your plans? Beach? Pool? Family BBQ? With all the parties and BBQs going on this weekend, I want to highlight some of the things we need to think about whether we are hosting or being a guest. For starters:  not all foods are safe for pregnant women. You know this already. But think about it in terms of a BBQ. Potato, macaroni or other mayonnaise based salads need to be kept cold. If you are eating outside put out small quantities and keep it on ice. Keep cold things cold. Meats should be cooked as they are needed and eaten piping hot from the grill. Eat hot things hot. Do not eat any meat raw, rare or even medium. You need to cook it long enough to kill the bacteria. If you are one of those people that need to measure things, hamburger should be cooked until a meat thermometer reads 160F. No raw or lightly cooked eggs in dressings such as Caesar either. Leave no food out for more than 4 hours. After that it should be thrown out. If you are offering a green salad, make sure to wash all the vegetable and fruits before assembly. Try to get domestic produce if possible. Imported produce often has higher levels of pesticides than that grown in the US.

If you are pregnant, no alcohol for you and limit you soda intake too. I am sure there will be juices and water in the beverage tub.

I hope to have a barbecue if the rain holds off. One of my guests is newly pregnant and another is a new mom. To make sure they enjoy the meal along with everyone else, I am planning on grilled veggies, Indonesian beef skewers, a rice salad and some fresh fruit and sorbet.  Sound yummy?

Whether you are eating exotic cuisine or burgers and potato salad it is important to keep it safe.  What are you doing this weekend?