TV cooks 'washing' their hands

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shivvy | 14:06 Sat 20th Mar 2010 | Food & Drink
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Most chefs I see on the telly just seem to dip their fingers in a bowl of water instead of washing them the way basic food hygiene would suggest after handling raw chicken etc.
Anyone got any thoughts on this?


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Never have a functioning sink on this programmes and i agree they dont wash their hands properly
thats becuse most studios dont have running water so there is just a bowl there with water in for them to wash their hands
Most of the meals are cooked off camera.
they're doing cookery programmes not hygiene programmes. most of us know about washing our hands and we have to use our own common sense when watching tv.
I once was horrified to see Ainsley Harriott on TV handle some raw lamb mince with which he made several small patties, then immediately mix together by hand a salad of fresh leaves in a bowl. Yechhh.
Question Author
ethandron - I think a level of food hygiene is an essential element of any cooking and, as many viewers may not know the dangers of cross-contamination, it is important for the chefs and/or programmes to adhere to safe practices.

That said, when I did my basic food hygiene certificate I couldn't believe how I (and most of the population) could ever have made it to adulthood!!
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That is true to a certain extent. Yet what may be OK for us, as individuals, may very likely not be for someone else. Everyones immune system is if you are used to dipping your hands in meat...and then straight into the salad leaves-fine. But if it is for others,then only safe practice is acceptable.
As for common sense....we all have it...but if those who are supposed to be demonstrating cooking as it should be done, are practising less than safe hygiene, how are WE the public, supposed to know whats right?
Cooking...and cookery programs..... are not just about the food, but should be about all aspects of getting it to the table.
sometimes they don't even do that, it's just a quick wipe on a tea-towel! It makes me shudder, especially when it's chicken. But the experts do reckon that the extensive use of these anti-bacterial sprays and such we use these days are contributing to the anti-biotic strains of bugs are on the rise. Like somebody said, we all have to eat a peck of dirt before we die! - I don't mind a bit of grit in my salad, just don't give me salmonella, thank you very much!!!
I meant to say anti-biotic resistant strains of bugs
i think a level of hygiene is important too, and that's the important bit - a LEVEL of hygiene. you can't hold a cookery programme responsible if you don't wash your hands after handling raw meat and then become ill. we have to take responsibility for ourselves.
however, if you were a chef or cook or involved in preparing and cooking food for the general public, then that is very different. what i do in my own kitchen, or you do in yours, is down to the indiividual. similarly with tv chefs, they're showing you how to cook, it's not a programme about hygiene practices.
On my cooking course at cadets, the instructor said that its ok to lapse a bit on hygiene at home for example he just uses any random clean chopping board and doesn't have specific ones for meat/ vegetables etc.

But when you're cooking for other people especially when you're being watched for a demo or to get a certficate, you should do everything to the highest standard, ie. specific food type chopping boards, washing hands more thoroughly and cleaning dirty surfaces.
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maybe its not water, but some kind of antibac rinse...?
How boring would it be to see the chef repeatedly wash his or her hands for two minutes at time?
Common sense, please.
As hc said, the programs are about teaching you to cook, it would waste too much time showing all the prep and hygeine bits and would lose viewers if they added it.
Question Author
I def agree that many of the 'rules' in basic food hygiene seem more than a little over the top considering that most of the population do not have designated chopping boards but aren't dying in their millions! I also agree that it would be very unhealthy to live in a world with no bugs or bacteria.
However basic hand washing is vital and the point that I find interesting is that the chefs regularly agree to show that they aren't washing their hands properly on tv. I think it might make people wonder about the general food safety in their restaurants.
A lot of your points are correct shivvy and another thing I have noticed recently on the '' This Morning Show '' is that none of the chefs wear any kitchen whites and that newish young Guy wears that silly scarf around his neck and shoulders while cooking. Not sure whats that all about except for him thinking it being cool?
Question Author
Out of interest I have just sent an email to This Morning asking them about it.
I got the automatically generated email to say that they cant answer every email etc but it will be interesting to see what they say if they do reply.

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