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BTD Forums  /  Cook Right 4 Your Type  /  Don't wash chicken before cooking???
Posted by: Chloe, Friday, July 11, 2014, 6:44pm
http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/278328.php

Does anyone agree with this?
Posted by: Captain_Janeway, Friday, July 11, 2014, 6:56pm; Reply: 1
Quoted from Chloe


Nope. I have always washed chicken before cooking. It's a matter of being careful and keeping your sinks, cutting boards and utensils clean as well as kitchen countertops.

Cooking the meat at the right temp for the  recommended time is what is important.

I have never caught a foodborne illness from this practice and neither have any of my guests.
Posted by: Averno, Friday, July 11, 2014, 7:16pm; Reply: 2

Are they suggesting that properly cooked unwashed chicken is safe? I find this hard to believe, given what we know of how contaminated chickens are. The article sounds almost like a warning to stop eating chicken  :o
Posted by: Lin, Friday, July 11, 2014, 7:57pm; Reply: 3
I had heard this advice was being given out but I follow Dr.D's advice to soak chicken in water with salt for 5 minutes, and repeat.
Posted by: Spring, Friday, July 11, 2014, 8:05pm; Reply: 4
I have been reading about NOT washing chicken for several years. I suppose there are several reasons, but the main one I've noticed is that they recommend this because of the danger of splattering the water all over the fixtures, the sink, the counter tops and even the wall or floor! Certainly, there is the possibility of any or all of this happening. I hardly ever cook chicken anymore, so I don't worry about it. If I did wash chicken these days, I would be spraying down everything with alcohol and let it sit a little while. If I remember correctly, Butterball doesn't recommend washing poultry. And some directions call for not even thawing a turkey but put it in the oven. Later, whatever is stuffed inside (turkey parts, etc.) can be taken out when it has thawed enough. I have never stuffed a turkey so this method would not be a problem for me.
Posted by: Chloe, Friday, July 11, 2014, 8:24pm; Reply: 5
I'm thinking about what ISN'T being washed off these chickens if you just unpack the bird and
throw it into the oven or even a pot of soup........would this bacteria be "cooked out"??? Or is
bacteria forming only because the bird left the package and chicken blood got onto other
surfaces?  And is your chicken wrapper now hazmet?  

There is still a splatter factor by just opening the chicken wrapper....and nobody is opening
their wrapper over a trash can....It's usually over a sink or on the counter top.

Honestly, if you fill a sink with water and sea salt and open your chicken bag over the sink....wear gloves if touching the chicken is too risky...and then place the bird in a pan, isn't this safer?  Isn't the problem really hygiene for which most people who eat chicken should be aware.

How is it in my grandmother's day, nobody had these bacterial problems from handling chicken?

I think people reading "do not wash" might leave their chicken wrapper on the counter where if they don't carefully clean up all surfaces, it's really the same risk as washing the chicken.

If the issue is really splashing, then a splash warning should appear on chicken wrappers.  Something like "be careful with unwrapping this package and carefully dispose of it, then please
be careful to disinfect your surfaces."  To me "don't wash chicken" is not the real message.
Posted by: Spring, Friday, July 11, 2014, 9:00pm; Reply: 6
I have a spray bottle of alcohol on my counter all the time. Does it ever get used. And, yes, the main issue was splashing.  In my opinion, I don't think any of us would still be alive if cooking didn't kill anything in chicken that is dangerous. That is why they SERIOUSLY recommend cooking it to a certain degree. Everyone needs a good thermometer, and I use mine all the time. Maybe you don't remember my story about licking the delicious looking sauce off a spoon that I had JUST USED TO SPREAD SAUCE ON THE CHICKEN I WAS ABOUT TO COOK!!!  :o :o :o First, I thoroughly washed my mouth out with peroxide (which I keep under the sink) and then, right away I called the CDC screaming for a remedy! I told the woman who answered that I hardly even BREATHE when I am preparing chicken, and here I've licked a spoon with raw chicken juice on it!!! I was almost hysterical. Her response was that I probably wouldn't get anything from it, and washing out with the peroxide was the best thing I could have done, and if I did develop any symptoms to please call them right away. Anyway, I never got the faintest sign of any illness from that episode.

So cleaning up the mess after preparing chicken for cooking seems to be the main thing to worry about. And NEVER stick a spoon in your mouth that has chicken juice on it!! (sunny) Think about it,  people used to use regular old dish soap to wash whatever utensils, dishes, pans - whatever, to prepare their chicken and never in our lives did we get sick from eating chicken!
Posted by: Chloe, Friday, July 11, 2014, 9:27pm; Reply: 7
Spring, your story is so entertaining.  Good thing you did not get food poisoning!  :)
Posted by: gulfcoastguy, Friday, July 11, 2014, 10:36pm; Reply: 8
I've forgotten if I used to wash them or not. When in doubt, doubt.
Posted by: ruthiegirl, Friday, July 11, 2014, 11:07pm; Reply: 9
I always rinse off my poultry before cooking. Carefully, inside the sink, so it doesn't splatter. And I throw out the packaging immediately, and then wash my hands. Common sense.

I can't imagine cooking chicken that's been sitting in plastic and NOT rinsing it off before cooking!
Posted by: ginnyTN, Saturday, July 12, 2014, 12:21am; Reply: 10
It's how chickens are raised now - in overcrowded totally unsanitary conditions, and then processed en masse, with bodies floating in vats of entrails and bacteria that didn't even exist years ago.  Then they put this toxic mess into packages where the bacteria can grow even more.

This ain't Grandma's farm anymore, folks.  But, it is still possible to find grass fed free range chickens that actually live outdoors all day and are not sent to mass slaughter houses for "processing".  That chicken meat also tastes good.  
Posted by: Spring, Saturday, July 12, 2014, 3:54am; Reply: 11
We know a guy who used to be a chicken inspector years ago. He had to wear gloves to inspect the chickens, of course, but even then he couldn't go to work if he had the slightest scratch on his hands. Hate to think what goes on now. Do you suppose the chickens even get inspected? I'm glad I don't have to bother very much with chicken anymore. I do keep some in the freezer sometimes for a quick meal for guests. It is frozen in separate jackets when I get it and organic.
Posted by: Chloe, Saturday, July 12, 2014, 5:13pm; Reply: 12
http://www.upc-online.org/freerange.html

OMG...I have now officially made myself gag in horror~!
Posted by: jayneeo, Saturday, July 12, 2014, 5:43pm; Reply: 13
ohhhhh…..how horrible. It's almost enough to make me turn vegetarian again! (wish I could, but it's terrible for my health)
I already buy the best, most organic humane, etc. I can find at WF…….. :-/
Posted by: Averno, Saturday, July 12, 2014, 6:15pm; Reply: 14
Quoted from Chloe
http://www.upc-online.org/freerange.html

OMG...I have now officially made myself gag in horror~!


Any wonder that PR, marketing, and lobbying firms are thriving?

I've often wondered where big producers were getting their free range eggs. With all the "technically this and technically that" going on, they haven't been delivering on their promise- we've been "technically had".

We do eat a fair amount of eggs in this household, and we're fortunate in that they come from an actual working farm. Almost Luddite in their methods. But for most people paying reasonably close attention to these matters, the reality of choosing those high-priced, plastic-packaged, name brand eggs in the supermarket case might come as a disappointment.
Posted by: Averno, Saturday, July 12, 2014, 6:22pm; Reply: 15
Quoted from jayneeo
ohhhhh…..how horrible. It's almost enough to make me turn vegetarian again! (wish I could, but it's terrible for my health)
I already buy the best, most organic humane, etc. I can find at WF…….. :-/


Yeah, WF has a really good one. Best eggs I've ever eaten, and for $7 per dozen, they ought to be  ;D
Posted by: Spring, Sunday, July 13, 2014, 3:20am; Reply: 16
The eggs I buy are really good too. Sure beat those cheapo, colorless yolked ones by far. That entire article seemed to be an advertisement for pushing a vegan diet.
Posted by: Chloe, Sunday, July 13, 2014, 7:38pm; Reply: 17
Quoted from Spring
That entire article seemed to be an advertisement for pushing a vegan diet.


A picture is worth a thousand words.  I can't get the visuals out of my head....but I don't do well
with eggs and never liked them....and chicken is only neutral.  In the big picture, I'd rather eat
turkey, some fish and a lot of plant foods.....and let all the animals provide nourishment for
those who thrive on them.  This isn't an ethical decision I ever made......it really has more to do with my food preferences.  Out of blue, my body might start craving an egg or two....rarely chicken, mostly it would be lamb or chicken livers. After getting my "fix" I'm usually back to eating a semi vegetarian diet. Just happens naturally.

BTW, Crack open a Pete and Gerry's egg and the yolk is bright yellow.  Beautiful eggs!

Posted by: Averno, Sunday, July 13, 2014, 8:23pm; Reply: 18
Quoted from Chloe
... In the big picture, I'd rather eat turkey, some fish and a lot of plant foods.....and let all the animals provide nourishment for those who thrive on them.  This isn't an ethical decision I ever made......it really has more to do with my food preferences.  


I eat pretty much the same as you do, Chloe, with the exception of a little lamb one a week to satisfy my B-side. The point you've made is kind of how I respond to vegetarians...  "I'm aware of the ethics, and if I didn't need it, I wouldn't eat it".

My preference would be vegetarian, but it doesn't fulfill my needs. The body has the final say about what the body really requires. The message can be scrambled by what we believe we should do ethically, as easily as not paying attention (which I think is epidemic in modern culture).

Posted by: Spring, Monday, July 14, 2014, 2:08am; Reply: 19
Quoted from Chloe
BTW, Crack open a Pete and Gerry's egg and the yolk is bright yellow.  Beautiful eggs!

The organic eggs I eat are delicious! And beautiful. I grew up eating eggs just like them!
Posted by: misspudding, Monday, July 14, 2014, 7:21am; Reply: 20
I read somewhere recently (I think it was Consumer Reports) where they compared rinsing versus not rinsing, and the kitchens where rinsing had occurred had more bacteria.

It took me a really long time to not rinse my chicken, but I don't do it anymore.

The important thing is to cook your meat to the right temperature.

http://www.consumerreports.org/cro/magazine/2014/02/the-high-cost-of-cheap-chicken/index.htm
Posted by: Lin, Monday, July 14, 2014, 1:06pm; Reply: 21
While I believe that article is true of many chicken farms, I've watched a documentary that showed similar horrible conditions, I don't believe all Farms are this extreme.
It also felt to me like a very strong plug to getting people on a Vegan diet.
It would have been better if they had also shared information on farms who do things right.
I don't mind them plugging the vegan diet, but it isn't for everyone.
Lin
Posted by: misspudding, Monday, July 14, 2014, 7:26pm; Reply: 22
I tried being a vegetarian for four years when I was younger, and it about killed me. I wish I could swear off all animal protein, but I bloat up, become almost suicidal, and get seizures. *sigh*

Oh well. At least beef tends to be better, from an ethical standpoint. Glad I have that option. Too bad it's very expensive lately, for some reason (though still way cheaper than what the rest of the world pays, I guess).
Posted by: Jane, Monday, July 14, 2014, 8:49pm; Reply: 23
The Country Hen eggs (from a farm here in Massachusetts) have dark yellow yolks.  Like the Pete and Gerry's, they just taste better and I feel better than with some of the other brands.
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