The second busiest Bar-B-Que weekend (1st is the 4th of July) is here. Nothing can ruin a Memorial Day party like inviting the Grim Reaper or Uncle Sal, Sal Monella.

 

As a host, food safety is in your hands, or on them.

Rule one, Wash your hands. Even with a moist towelette, but preferably soap and water if it’s available. I repeat, wash your hands. Other HuffPost hints include:

 

Bacterial cross contamination can be avoided by not reusing plates or utensils that have been in contact with poultry, seafood or raw meat. Also, keep them wrapped and separated in the cooler.

 

Keep cold foods cold to avoid bacterial growth. Use ice or ice packs and keep that cooler out of direct sunlight.

 

Keep hot foods at 140° or higher. Use a meat thermometer for the hot stuff, an appliance thermometer in the cooler, so foods are chilling below 40°.

 

Foods in the “Danger Zone” of above 40° and below 140° for 2 hours or more should be thrown out faster than a runner on third. If its 90° or warmer, cut that throwaway time down to an hour.

 

For your BBQ, you should be chillin’ like the meats in your cooler, and cookin’ like Sammy Hagar at Cabo Wabo.

Nothing ruins a great BBQ party like someone doing a Technicolor yawn in your bushes. There’ll be no hurling if you’re safe.