A dozen Egg Safety Tips

Eggs are a perishable food and should be treated with care.

When cooking or conducting food experiments with children, follow these food safety tips:

1.- Buy refrigerated grade A or AA eggs with clean, uncracked shells. Discard any that crack on the way to school or home.

2.- Keep eggs refrigerated at 40oF or below in their cartons on a middle or lower shelf in the refrigerator, NOT ON THE DOOR.

3.- Avoid contact of the shell with its contents. Use a clean utensil to remove any shell pieces which fall into the eggs when cracking them open.

4.- Cook basic egg dishes until the whites are set and the yolks begin to thicken: they don’t have to be hard.

5.- Cook Scrambled eggs, omelets and frittatas until there is no visible liquid egg remaining.

6.- Cook other dishes such as French toast and Monte Cristo sandwiches, crab cakes, pasta dishes, quiches and casseroles until they’re done at the center (160oF).

7.- Cook the eggs or use a pasteurized egg product when making eggnog, ice cream, Hollandaise sauce and other recipes calling for raw eggs.

8.- Keep eggs and egg dishes in the refrigerator as much as possible, allowing no more than 2 hrs at room temperature for preparing and serving.

9.- Divide leftovers into several small containers and refrigerate right after a meal so they’ll cool quickly.

10.- Wash hands, utensils, equipment and work surfaces with hot, soapy water before and after preparing eggs and all other foods. Be particularly careful to wash hands after changing diapers or assisting children in bathroom.

11.- When coloring eggs, wash hands thoroughly before handling eggs at every step including cooking, cooling and coloring. Return eggs to the refrigerator at every opportunity. For coloring, use water warmer than the eggs. Use only food-safe decorating materials for eggs to be eaten.

12.- Use refrigerated hard-cooked eggs within 1 week. Discard cracked eggs or eggs that have been out of the refrigerator for more than 2 hrs.