Hygiene in the kitchen is very important. It is common knowledge that food can get contaminated easily if there is no proper hygiene and one can contact disease from unhygienic food.
Germs that cause food poisoning are usually destroyed by heating (cooking) and/or chilling (refrigerating), but they can easily spread around the kitchen through our hands, chopping boards, cloths and napkins, knives, cutlery and other utensils if not properly dealt with.
An important precaution is to remove jewellery on the hands before commencing work in the kitchen. This is because microscopic germs could lurk under and around the surfaces of the jewellery. Therefore, it is advisable to remove things like wedding bands, rings, hand-chains before working in the kitchen
Basic Hygiene Rules for the Kitchen
Clean stage by stage
Clean kitchen surfaces after every stage of food preparation. Although this seems to be stressful, but it helps to keep the environment continually sanitised.
Raw meat, poultry, fish, eggs and many other raw foods are the most common sources of germs and they can easily cross-contaminate other foods. After handling or touching these foods, make sure you always wash your hands, utensils and kitchen surfaces thoroughly before you touch anything else.
Use different chopping boards
An effective way of stopping cross-infection is to have a different chopping-board for raw meat and fish and another for all other chopping. This will go a long way to contribute to the health and hygiene of the kitchen.
Wash utensils with hot water
After use, wash all your dishes and utensils with hot water and dish washing liquid; don’t just run them under the tap. Change the water regularly, then rinse in clean, hot water. If possible, leave everything to drain until dry.
Use paper towels
Use paper towels as much as possible. Dish towels could be a source of cross-contamination so it is advisable to use them less and change frequently. Wash dish cloths in a hot-wash cycle.
Use sani-rinse to prevent infection
Whenever anyone in your house has cold or the flu, use “sani-rinse” option on the dishwasher. “Sani-rinse” is a very hot cycle that totally kills germs and bacteria.
Use a dash of lime for surfaces
For surfaces and kitchen tables squeeze a dash of lime into the washing liquid. Alternatively, you can put a solution of lemon juice and water in a spray bottle to clean counter and table tops. Rinse with water and dry afterward.
Lemon juice solution not only cleans stains from cutting boards, but also kills germs as well. Rub the juice onto the spots where stains are located and let it stay until the stain fades. It can be left for 7 hours or overnight, then rinse well and sundry.
Removing odours from microwave
Clean the body of the microwave with cloth and a dab of water to remove dust and minor stains. To remove accumulated food odours, put a cup of water about 3/4 with a few tablespoons of lemon juice in the microwave. Bring to boil and leave in the microwave for another 10 minutes. Open the door and wipe away food particles with a clean cloth and dry.