This is why you should never defrost food on the kitchen counter or microwave

We’ve all been there — the intention to cook a nice chicken breast for dinner only to realize we’ve forgotten to defrost. Rather than looking for an alternative, we attempt to speed up the process by tossing the meat in the microwave instead. So what’s the big deal? Well, defrosting at those warm temperatures puts you at serious risk of eating dangerous levels of bacteria. Yikes! According to Professor Costa Stathopoulos from Abertay University, defrosting meat in the microwave “is really not the best of techniques.” Stathopoulos appeared on BBC Two’s Inside the Factory earlier this month and showed the difference between turkey meat that had been defrosted in the fridge versus turkey meat defrosted on the counter. The latter had twice the amount of harmful bacteria, including ecoli microorganisms. And that’s not even considering the warm temps the meat reaches in the microwave. Cold temperatures slow down bacterial growth, so your chance of an upset stomach…

Can you still eat freezer burned foods?

The freezer can be a lifesaver when it comes to food prep. Whether it’s that container of frozen mashed potatoes, a homemade pie or that slow cooker starter, frozen foods can be a lifesaver, but there’s always the risk of dreaded freezer burn. So what exactly is this icy crust composed of, and is the food still safe to eat? Freezer burn occurs when foods dry out in cold temperatures. Those icy crystals are a result of moisture escaping your pint of ice cream or bag of chicken breasts and turning to ice on the outside of the food. This means either the food wasn’t stored properly, or it has been frozen for too long — everything dries out eventually. But fear not, a little freezer burn never hurt anyone. It’s entirely safe to eat foods that have a little burn, though they might not be as tasty. Texture of freezer burnt foods…