Tips to Take A Meal Safely

MARCH 31, 2020  /  LINDSEY SHANTZ  / 

Tips to Take A Meal Safely
Many of you have asked if you can still ship meals from our store to your loved ones. Certainly! The meals are flash frozen and reheated by the recipient which is ideal. Stay well, friends! ~Adina
Safe food handling is an important consideration in taking a meal to a friend or loved one. While food safety is necessary for all of us, it's especially important when taking a meal to someone ill or with a compromised immune system.
We recently shared some important reminders of how to best take meals when the recipient is sick (and possibly contagious). We also wanted to compile a list of practical ideas to prevent anyone from getting a foodborne illness.
This is by no means a complete list; however, our team thinks these are great guidelines to follow whether cooking for your own family or taking a meal.
1. Clean hands and kitchen workspace - Wash your hands frequently and clean your kitchen workspace as you cook. Find tips here with the new CDC's national handwashing campaign. Also don't forget to rinse fresh fruit and vegetables with running water and scrub with a veggie brush if needed.
2. Use fresh ingredients - Only use the freshest ingredients. Purchase meat and other perishables as close to the day of taking the meal as possible. Pay attention to the "sell by" date or "best if used by" date if applicable. Consider purchasing from a local producer or farmers market or buy organic if possible.
3. Avoid cross contamination - From your shopping cart to your grocery bag to your refrigerator, always keep raw meat, poultry and seafood separate from other foods. Have handy multiple cutting boards to avoid cross contamination; use one for produce and another for raw meat, poultry or seafood.
4. No double dipping - We love this simple idea that was recently shared with us. Place a mug full of taste testing spoons nearby so you can taste and discard the spoons as you season the dish. Bacteria levels greatly increase after a double dip.
5. Include date prepared - Label the meal with the date it was prepared so the recipient can track when the meal should be enjoyed (or leftovers disposed of if needed). The date also helps the recipient determine how much refrigerator time is acceptable before freezing if they decide to later freeze the meal.
6. Cook to the correct temperature - Food must be cooked to a safe internal temperature to destroy any harmful bacteria. Check with a food thermometer to make sure food is safe.
7. Transport meals promptly - Keep hot foods hot and cold foods cold. Our insulated green tote is perfect to organize and transport meals. We made sure it fits a 9" by 13" pan with plenty of room to spare. When I am delivering a meal I use one tote for hot or warm items and a second tote with a reusable ice block in the bottom to transport cold items. I also wrap a kitchen towel around the hot items to help keep the heat in.
8. Never cook while sick - We always advise meal providers to only participate in a meal schedule when they feel well and are confident they have not been exposed to a virus. If for any reason you want to provide a meal but don't feel comfortable making one we can help. Our online store offers healthy meals available for purchase and delivery to your loved ones.
You can count on us during times like this, especially if you need help with sending a meal or using our website. We want you to have assurance our team is available to help you care for your friends, neighbors, community and loved ones near and far.

Read other recent articles by Lindsey Shantz:

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Adina & Maureen
Adina & Maureen

Welcome! We're thrilled you stopped by. Our own joys and sorrows have taught us that a well-timed meal delivered by a friend is one of the best gifts imaginable. In this space, we share our favorite recipes to take to friends, meal-taking tips, and other ways to care for those who are dear to you.

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