Cooking in the kitchen is a fun activity for many people. It creates a relaxing self-time or a bonding moment for the family. It can even be entertaining and hilarious to watch your mom or your friend burn the food. However, it’s just the fun we have to think about. It is essential to learn how to maintain kitchen safety and hygiene and be aware of kitchen hazards to avoid injuries.
Handling Knives and Other Sharp Kitchen Tools
Misusing a knife can lead to severe cuts and injuries. To avoid such things from happening, always handle knives with undivided attention. Make sure you’re not distracted while cutting a piece of fruit or a vegetable, or meat. Keep them sharp to prevent yourself from straining while slicing or dicing.
Don’t underestimate can openers, graters, zesters, and other tools with sharp parts. Getting cuts from them can still lead to a more serious injury. Also, be careful with metal can lids and glass containers. Besides, it is rather unhygienic to handle tools and food with wounds.
Using Appropriate Cooking Tools
Considering the size, the weight, and the texture of the food product you’re handling, you must use the proper tools. You can’t pick up a big piece of meat with a pair of small tongs, and you can’t cut it with a small knife.
When handling hot dishes, it’s always essential to use oven mitts. Otherwise, you will have a higher chance of burn injuries and spills.
Knowing How to Handle Fire
People who rarely cook can panic in situations like fire in the kitchen. There are definitely times when this can happen, but it’s not impossible to avoid and stop them.
When a fire occurs in a microwave, stove, or oven, shut the door immediately and turn it off. Once it’s safe, unplug it, but be sure your hands are dry to prevent it from getting worse. Use a pot pan or pouring baking soda over the big flames on grease. This is a situation where water can’t be trusted.
Remember, water can’t stop grease and electrical fire. For electrical fire, it’s best to use a fire extinguisher. This is why it is important to keep even a little one in your kitchen aside from the one for the rest of the house.
Basically, don’t leave a turned-on stove unattended, and avoid wearing loose sleeves while cooking. Always double check if the appliances and gas tank are off after using them and before turning in for the night.
Beware of Food Poisoning
Practicing proper food storage is one of the ways to observe food safety. Aside from security, properly storing food reduces food waste. This way, you can save money and help protect the environment. Moreover, you can buy food in bulk or season, and you can eat the fruits and vegetables you want any time of the year.
With safe food storage, you can avoid cross-contamination and food poisoning. When transporting uncooked or fresh food, use coolers and thermoses to help keep food at safe temperatures. Pack food tightly, and store them immediately in a refrigerator or on ice once you arrive at home or any other destination when you’re traveling.
Another way to prevent cross-contamination is to use different chopping boards for different kinds of food. Don’t cut your fruits and vegetable on a board that you use to cut meat.
Maintaining Ventilation and Air Quality
Some indoor pollution comes from the kitchen. Different cooking processes, such as browning and frying, produce airborne emissions. Even if you don’t cook that often, it is still possible for your kitchen to have high pollutant levels.
To make it worse, it can spread all throughout the house. This exposure can be harmful to people with asthma, heart or lung diseases, and especially children. Even if you’re not one of these, you can develop a respiratory problem because of indoor air pollution.
Therefore, getting proper ventilation is essential. You can install an exhaust fan to keep unwanted odors and air pollution out. If you want to save energy and your utility bills, you can replace your windows with bigger ones or install more if you can.
Practicing Proper Cleanliness and Hygiene
Basically, wash your hands before handling food. Wash your utensils properly and replace the sponge regularly as well to avoid sickness running in the family. Wiping down counters is not enough for them to be completely clean, so you have to sanitize them as often as needed. Also, wash your towels and use different ones for different purposes. Proper cleanliness will help avoid food poisoning.
Keeping your kitchen clean and safe might not be as fun as baking cookies or cooking dinner, but it is a top priority for many important reasons.
Meta title: The Basic Kitchen Safety Rules to Keep in Mind
Meta desc: Ensuring food and kitchen safety is one of the best things you can do to protect yourself and your family. Avoiding injuries and sickness can also add to the comfort of your home.