Cooks in the family always make it their constant goal to craft and serve good food to their dearests. In the house, they are creating meals everyday, providing what gives energy to everyone, aiming to satisfy and make every member’s tummy and heart full.
If you have the role of a cook within your family, you understand what that means. You definitely know that though challenging, being able to cook nice food for the gang gladdens you. A smile gets carved on your face and on your heart whenever you hear the kids or your parents exclaim how they love the food you cook! The joy that comes from that act of service is indeed priceless.
Out of love, you do this, and while you do it, you have a huge responsibility. Although those people are to appreciate and thank you for what you do, you are to ensure that the food you put together for them is not wrought with harm. It must not present any sort of danger to their health and safety. Of course, you will be affected as well because you eat your own cooked food as well.
One of the crucial keys to guarantee the nontoxicity and healthfulness of your personally made food is to be in a good condition yourself while you work on them. You should look after yourself and confirm that before you cook, you pay attention to sanitary measures.
As the home’s cook, you should know what to do and what to avoid. Here are 8 ways to observe good personal hygiene when cooking food at home.
1 – Wear clean clothes and an apron.
When doing kitchen work, you have to be dressed properly. Yes, that is even when you are just at home.
Wear clothes that are clean and simple. Avoid complicated shirts that have dangling threads or gems that can fall onto cooking pots. See to it that they are neat and free from dust and dirt, which can fly to the stew you are making.
At the same time, wear a full-body apron to protect yourself from oil splatters and sauce spills. It can help you prevent elements from your clothing from accidentally going to your food.
2 – Remove your jewelry.
Eliminate any possible obstruction from your body, such as accessories. Remove your jewelry before cooking. Take off rings, bracelets and watches from your hands and arms. Besides the possibility of hurting yourself while cooking while wearing them, they can negatively affect the food you are cooking, too.
What’s more, you will never know when fragments coming from your accessories’ materials might get left behind in the dough you are kneading or might get dropped to the soup pot you are waiting to boil.
3 – Tie long hair up.
If you have long hair, tie it up. Even if you don’t, yet your hair goes in front of your face, tie it up. This will prevent your hair from distracting and disturbing you. You will not need to fix it later on if you begin with hair tied up from the very start.
4 – Wear a hair net.
Another thing you can do to prepare your crowning glory before cooking is to wear a hair net. Completely cover your hair and head with this mesh, so you can avoid hair from falling into the food you are crafting.
Furthermore, it stops you from repetitively and unnecessarily touching your hair. Touching your hair is actually a must-not-do because you are holding food when cooking. In addition, your hair can get dirtied, powdered or wet by your busy hands at work. Your hair might turn gray after touching it with hands covered in cake flour.
5 – Cut fingernails short and neat.
Hands are the most occupied body part while cooking and baking. It’s inevitable. The hands do everything, and that’s undeniable.
Because of that, get your hands ready for action. Cut your fingernails short, and be sure that they are neat before you do the kitchen magic! Dirty nails are a no-no. They are totally gross. It’s hard to imagine dirty hands preparing delicious food! Completely yucky.
6 – Wash your hands thoroughly.
A basic necessity that some people sometimes take lightly is this, but don’t forget! Wash your hands thoroughly. Every space and corner of your hands should be free from dirt before doing food-related pursuits in the kitchen.
7 – Cover wounds, or wear hand gloves.
In case you have a wound somewhere around your hands, arms or other body parts, cover them before cooking. Especially if it’s located on the hand, conceal it with waterproof wound dressing. An alternative is wearing hand gloves.
Firstly, doing this prevents you from hurting yourself further and from paving the way for infection to happen. And secondly, that keeps you from spreading bacteria that comes from your wound.
This is a good personal hygiene practice for your food and your family’s food, plus it cares for your physical hurts, too.
8 – Do not cook the family’s meal when you are sick.
Cooks of the family are heroes. Regardless of how they feel, they cook and serve food for their home. That’s sweet, for real.
However, for good personal hygiene purposes, do not cook the family’s meal when you are sick. If you have a cough, cold or flu, avoid cooking everyone’s meal at home. You are not in a good health condition, and you might communicate viruses through the food you make in front of you.
Let someone else do it, or just order for delivery. Take a rest instead, and wait until you recover. You can always go back when you have fully gotten well.
WELL YOU. WELL FOOD.
Everytime you prepare food for your family, bear in mind that the biggest goal is to keep yourself and your family healthy, safe and alive.
Food safety is a must. It’s not as light as it is perceived and as you might probably think. There are lives that actually get lost because of food poisoning from dirty and contaminated food. The culprits are not simply the ingredients that are not in a good state when used and not merely the environment where they are made, which lacks cleanliness. After all, they cannot cause harm if they were responsibly used. The person who operates with them to cook food is the one that will be inevitably blamed. It’s unfortunate, and you wouldn’t want such a thing to happen.
As your family’s chef, you have to take care of yourself and prepare yourself before doing your task. Not only the food must be presentable and appropriate but importantly, you, too.
Do not forget that personal hygiene is not an option. It is a must-have. It is never to be missed. Care for yourself. Care for the food you make. Care for the people you love.
Nicole Ann Pore is a writer, an events host and a voice over artist. She finds quality and well-researched writing as a worthwhile avenue to enlighten and delight others about things that matter. For her, it’s restoring and fulfilling to the heart and a great way to clear the mind while loading it up with fresh learning. Film critiquing and filmmaking are among her interests too. Giving all the glory to God, Nicole graduated Cum Laude from De La Salle University Manila, Philippines with a Bachelor’s Degree in Communication Arts.