ServSafe Starters Employee Guide Controlling Time and Temperature Concepts You Will Learn •• •• •• •• Food most likely to become unsafe How to measure the temperature of food Holding and storing TCS food How to label food for storage Controlling Time and Temperature 15 Food Most Likely to Become Unsafe Any type of food can be contaminated. But some types allow more pathogen growth. The best way to control pathogen growth in these items is to control time and temperature. So these food items are known as food that needs time and temperature control for safety, or TCS food for short. Here are the most common types of TCS food. •• Milk and dairy products •• Eggs •• Meat: beef, pork, and lamb •• Poultry •• Fish •• Shellfish and crustaceans •• Baked potatoes •• Heat-treated plant food, such as cooked rice, beans, and vegetables •• Tofu or other soy protein •• Synthetic ingredients, such as textured soy protein in meat alternatives •• Sliced melons •• Cut tomatoes •• Sprouts and sprout seeds •• Untreated garlic-and-oil mixtures More on this 16 ServSafe Starters Employee Guide Apply Your Knowledge What to Control Circle each food item that needs time and temperature control to keep it safe. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 For answers, please turn to page 48. Controlling Time and Temperature How to Measure the Temperature of Food To control the temperature of food, you must first know how to check it. A thermometer is the most important tool for doing this. Follow the guidelines below to do it right. 1Use the right thermometer for the job you are doing. •• Check with your manager about the right thermometer to use. 2Make sure the thermometer is ready to be used. •• It must be washed, rinsed, and sanitized. Do this before using it. •• It must be adjusted so it will read temperatures correctly. This is called calibration. 3Check temperatures the right way. •• Stick the thermometer into the thickest part of the food. This is usually the center. •• Wait until the thermometer reading stays steady before writing down a temperature. •• Take another reading in a different spot. 4Clean and sanitize the thermometer. •• Wash, rinse, sanitize, and air-dry the thermometer after using it. •• Keep its storage case clean. Apply Your Knowledge Taking Its Temperature 1 Write a next to where you should check the temperature of food. 2 Write a next to what you should do after using a thermometer. A On the top surface A Wash it well and then let it dry. B On the bottom surface B Wipe it off and put it back in its case. C In the thickest part C Let it air-dry. D In the thinnest part D Wash, rinse, sanitize, and air-dry it. For answers, please turn to page 48. 17 18 ServSafe Starters Employee Guide Holding and Storing TCS Food When you hold or store TCS food the wrong way, pathogens have a chance to grow. To keep food safe during these tasks, follow the guidelines below. Temperature Danger Zone Storing TCS Food Safely To keep TCS food safe, you must keep it out of the temperature danger zone. TCS food must be stored the right way. Pathogens survive and grow •• Do not overload coolers or freezers. •• Return prepped food to coolers as quickly as possible. •• Plan ahead so you don’t have to open cooler doors more than necessary. •• Pathogens grow well in the temperature range from 41˚F to 135˚F (5˚C to 57˚C). This range is called the temperature danger zone. •• TCS food must be kept out of this range. Apply Your Knowledge Holding and Storing Safely Holding TCS Food Safely To keep TCS food safe during holding, follow these guidelines. •• Keep hot food at 135˚F (57˚C) or higher. •• Keep cold food at 41˚F (5˚C) or lower. •• Keep frozen food frozen. •• Check the food’s temperature at least every four hours. •• If food is not being held at the right temperature, tell your manager. 1 Write a next to the temperature that cooked hamburger patties being hot-held (waiting to be served) should be kept at before service. A 41˚F (5˚C) or lower B 94˚F (34˚C) or lower C 125˚F (52˚C) or higher D 135˚F (57˚C) or higher 2 At 10:30 a.m., John removed four cases of hamburger patties from the cooler for the lunch rush. After lunch, he noticed that the uncooked patties were at room temperature. Write a next to what he should do. A Nothing, the patties are okay to cook. B Return them to the cooler immediately. C Cook them immediately. D Ask his manager. 3 When Greta went into the freezer to get more fish sticks, she found that they were thawed. Write a next to what she should do. A Take the fish sticks and cook them. B Leave the fish sticks there to freeze. C Throw away all the thawed fish sticks. D Ask her manager. For answers, please turn to page 48. Controlling Time and Temperature 19 How to Label Food for Storage Food can be stored only for so long to keep it safe. To control storage time, you must be able to tell when food was stored and by what date it must be used. This means always labeling food as it is stored. Apply Your Knowledge Using Stored Food Safely 1 Circle the storage shelf that has the cans stored correctly. A All ready-to-eat food that is prepped in-house must have a label that includes the following information. •• Name of the food •• Use-by or expiration date—ask your manager what date to use B 2 Write a next to the items that must be included on the label for a pan of meat sauce prepped in-house. A Name of food; use-by date B Name of food; ingredients used C Name of food; purchase date D Name of food; allergens it contains For answers, please turn to page 48. When storing food: 1Check the expiration date. 2Store food in first in, first out (FIFO) order. This means storing food that will expire first in front of items that will expire later. 3Use the food in front first, because it will expire first.
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