Summer BBQ tips

Whether on a patio, at the beach, on a dock, in a tent, or simply sitting in the backyard watching the grass grow, summer is all about getting outside to savour the sunshine. What better way to enjoy the great outdoors than with a BBQ! As chicken fans, we’re keen to cook up chicken breasts, thighs or drumsticks as part of a mixed grill. If we have a little more time, we’ll go for a whole chicken cooked over a beer can. With so much fresh produce in season, we might make up some chicken skewers that incorporate seasonal vegetables. And of course there’s always room for wings on our grill.

To help you enjoy a season of tasty and safe al fresco dining, here are some BBQ food safety tips.

Version 2

SAFE BARBECUE FOOD PREPARATION

Storing raw meat in the refrigerator
At home, store raw meat in the refrigerator immediately after you return from the grocery store. Freeze raw poultry or ground beef that won’t be used within one to two days. Freeze other raw meats if they won’t be used within four to five days.

Storing raw meat in a cooler
If you are storing your meat in a cooler before barbecuing, make sure that the cooler is kept cold with ice packs. Keep the cooler out of direct sunlight and avoid opening it too often, because it lets cold air out and warm air in. Ensure that your meat products are well sealed and that ice water doesn’t come in contact with stored meat products. This can lead to cross-contamination with others items in the cooler. You may also want to use two coolers, one for drinks (as it may get opened more often) and another one for food. Whether you are storing the meat in the refrigerator or a cooler, always remember to keep food out of the temperature danger zone of 4°C to 60°C (40°F to 140°F). Bacteria can grow in this temperature range. In as little as two hours in this range, your food can become dangerous.

Marinating
Marinate meat in the refrigerator, not on the counter. If you want to save some of the marinade to baste cooked meat or use as a dipping sauce, make sure to set some aside in the refrigerator that hasn’t touched uncooked meat. Don’t use leftover marinade that has been in contact with raw meat on cooked food.

SAFE BARBECUE SERVING TIPS

Keep hot food hot
Remember to keep hot food hot until served. Keep cooked meats hot by setting them to the side of the grill, not directly over coals where they can overcook.

Serving food
Use a clean plate when taking food off the grill. Remember not to put cooked food on the same plate that held raw meat. This prevents it from being re-contaminated by raw juices.

Leftovers
Cool food by using shallow containers, so that it cools quickly. Discard any food left out for more than two hours. On hot summer days, don’t keep food at room temperature for more than one hour.

For a guide to safe cooking temperatures for various meat cuts, and for other safe BBQ cooking tips, visit the Government of Canada’s website.

Need some BBQ inspiration? Check out this recipe for Sambal Glazed Chicken Wings. Or try our new fresh organic chicken burgers.

#YVFChickenRun

Since June, July and August are the months of beautiful weather and fun festivals, we decided to make the best of it all and hit the road with our organic chicken. This summer we partnered with 5 food trucks that visited various retailer locations and the hottest festivals of the summer, and served up Yorkshire Valley Farms inspired dishes.

Charcoal-Grilled Chicken Tacos from El Gastronómo Vagabundo

Charcoal-Grilled Chicken Tacos from El Gastronómo Vagabundo

Folks tasted our chicken at Flavours of Niagara Festival with El Gastronómo Vagabundo, Toronto Beaches Jazz Festival with Gorilla Cheese, Spalsh Festival and Riot Fest with The Feisty Jack, and the Oakville Waterfront Festival with Gourmet Gringos. Not one weekend was wasted!

Krystian Catala of Gourmet Gringos at Oakville Waterfront Festival

Krystian Catala of Gourmet Gringos at Oakville Waterfront Festival

The line-ups continued at major retailers such as Nature’s EmporiumLongo’s and The Real Canadian Superstore. Matt Basile from Fidel Gastro’s and his food truck, Priscilla, parked outside of the stores and handed out free samples of his famous sandwiches and tacos filled with our organic chicken. It’s safe to say there wasn’t much left over.

Nature's Emporium with Fidel Gastro's

Nature’s Emporium with Fidel Gastro’s

We had such a wonderful time with this program because between retailers and festivals, we were able share our wholesome, organic chicken to new fans and friends, along with the old. We take pride in the food we produce; it’s important to us to that consumers are aware that good food is within arm’s reach.

Apple Butter Wings from The Feisty Jack

Apple Butter Wings from The Feisty Jack

The other highlight of this venture was that these 5 incredible food trucks integrated our organic chicken into their menus. Our chicken was grilled, smoked and fried up into these delicious dishes:

Chicken Tinga ~ Gourmet Gringos

Charcoal-Grilled Chicken Tacos ~ El Gastrónomo Vagabundo

Smoked Chicken Grilled Cheese Sandwiches ~ Gorilla Cheese

Indian Chicken Tikka &  Apple Butter Wings ~ The Feisty Jack

Talk about variety!

Smoked Chicken Grilled Cheese Sandwich from Gorilla Cheese

Smoked Chicken Grilled Cheese Sandwich from Gorilla Cheese

A big thanks goes out to El Gastrónomo Vagabundo, Gorilla Cheese, The Feisty Jack, Gourmet Gringos and Fidel Gastro’s for making our summer filled with fun and great food. The summer may be over, but it will never be forgotten!