There is a new trend emerging in the food service sector: serving rare beef patties right off the barbecue. Gone are the days when people would baulk at the prospect of consuming bright, pink meat as restaurants and consumers alike are warming up to the thought of consuming meat rare.
While some praise the culinary trend, it has also raised concerns about food safety standards. In the past, there have been reports of the presence of bacteria and pathogens in improperly cooked meat. Will burgers cooked less than well-done affect the health of Australians, then?
Ensuring that Meat is Cooked Properly
The National Food Safety Information Council considers re-constructed red meat, such as burgers and sausages part of a high-risk category. As a result, the Council recommends cooking red meat at 75° Celsius at the core to ensure that the meat is properly cooked. Lydia Buchtmann of the Council suggests that restaurants use food thermometers while cooking, as a meat’s degree of pinkness may be deceiving.
Food Safety Standards Recommend Cooking Burger Patties to Medium Rare
In recent years, there has been a rash of new methods of food preparation in the country, the rare burger patty movement being one of them. Serving patties with a cool, rare centre, however, may cause food poisoning due to the presence of E.coli bacteria.
The new cooking standards, therefore, endorse cooking patties to medium rare. On a similar note, food experts recommend that businesses invest in food safety courses for their employees to ensure proper cooking procedures, along with following health and safety measures in place.
Making the Rare Beef Patties a Part of Home Consumption
A primary concern of the National Food Safety Information Council is the consequences of the rare burger patty trend making its way into homes. Self-cooked rare burger patties may put food safety into question as some customers may not know the proper way to achieve a medium rare degree of doneness. It is safer, therefore, for consumers to partake in medium rare meat only in restaurants.
Even with new methods of food preparation, well-done meat still poses the least risks to human health. There are, after all, different ways to improve the taste of food without the risk of it staying undercooked.