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Hi! I’m Jennifer McEntire with the Institute of Food Technologists. Now that we’ve checked our refrigerator temperature and make sure that it’s safe, we’re going to talk a little bit about how do defrost foods.
There are several methods you can use. One method that a lot of people probably use is to just leave frozen food out on the counter. That’s not a recommended method because what can happen is the temperature on the outside part of the food will rise, it will become warmer while the core is still frozen. When you have the warmer temperature outside, bacteria can begin to multiply. You don’t want that to happen.
Another thing you can do is defrost in a pan. If you do this, it is considered safer. You’re supposed to change the water, make sure it’s cold water, change it every 30 minutes and cook that food immediately. What you don’t want to have happen is part of the food to be exposed to the air warming up similarly if you just left it on the counter. So, you do want to have a container that’s’ large enough so that you can completely immerse the food and keep it surrounded in a cold water. That’s much better, much safer.
Another thing you can do is to run the food under cold water continuously, it uses a lot of water, but then it’s fresh cold water that’s going to defrost your food.
Another method is to put food in the microwave. You want to put it on a sort of lower power level or if your microwave has a defrost button, because you want the food to—even, we want the heat to evenly be distributed through that food.
Another method you can use is to put the food in the refrigerator. That will take a couple of days particularly if your refrigerator is cold enough. And what you want to do is put it in a pan that’s large enough to catch anything that might drip and put it on a low shelf of the refrigerator. The reason you want to do this is if there are any liquids that sip out of that defrosting food, you don’t want them to contaminate other foods that are in the refrigerator. So, those are three methods to defrost foods.
Now that our food is defrosted we’re ready to start cooking.