Friday, August 22, 2014


I can't claim today's catchy title is original. (What is BAC anyway?Hint: look at the end of today's blog). I'm copying it from a hand-out from the MSU Extension excellent source for info about safe handling of fresh fruits and veggies. But first, a few fun facts about plain, ordinary cucumbers. Yes! I didn't know they were so versatile! Got this off the internet; claimed to be a reprint from the NY Times, but you never know, right? I've tried some of these, especially the ones that are so whimsically funny, like polishing shoes (yes, it worked!).
 One cucumber has: Vitamins B1,B2,B6,Folic Acid, VitC, Calcium, Iron, Magnesium, Phosphorus, Potassium and Zinc. Who knew?
    -got a big meeting/interview, and not enough time to polish shoes? Rub a slice of cucumber over the shoes; its chemicals provide a quick and durable shine that repels water!
     -no WD40? Use a cucumber slice on the squeaky hinge and voila!
     -grubs/slugs in your garden? Place a few cuke slices in a  small pie tin and they will go away! The chemicals in the cucumber react with the aluminum to give off a scent you can't smell, but they can and it drives them out of your life.     I love it!
Okay, back to BAC business: For safe handling of produce:
1. Check to be sure the fruits and veggies you bought are free of bruises/any damage.
2. Clean: wash hands with soap and running warm water before handling. Rub firm-skin produce under running tap water or scrub with a clean vegetable brush while rinsing with running water. Dry with clean cloth towel or paper towel.
3. Separate: MSU urges us all to keep all fresh fruits and veggies SEPARATE from raw meat, poultry and sea food in your shopping bags, in your refrigerator and use separate cutting boards for produce.
4. Cook or throw away fruits or veggies that have touched raw meat, poultry or seafood or their juices.
5. Chill: Refrigerate all cut, peeled or cooked fresh fruits and veggies within two hours.
6. Throw Away: fruit and veggies that have not been refrigerated within two hours of cutting, peeling or cooking. Remove and throw away bruised/damaged portions of fruits and veggies when preparing to cook them or before eating them raw. "If in doubt, throw it out."

Do I follow all these steps all the time? Can't say I do. But I sure appreciate knowing these steps and modifying them as I need to. (BAC is the catchy term MSU Extension uses for "bacteria" but you knew that already, right?). 
   Check back next week for interviews, tips, hints, info about produce, the Holt Farmers' Market and maybe a photo or two.


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