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Jul 14, 2005 05:24 PM

to rinse or not to rinse

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Should I be rinsing any packaged meat before cooking? I read somewhere that rinsing the meat can cause it to absorb the water and thus not caramelize as easily. I can't seem to forego rinsing because I think of the possible dirt and grime? Am I overreacting?

Also, I purchase sashimi quality fish, and wonder if I'm ruining the fish by rinsing it as well.

What are you thoughts?

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  1. Don't rinse unless it is a little old and feels a bit slippery, just pat dry with paper towels and season and cook

    3 Replies
    1. re: Candy

      Go with the nose. i always rinse because bacteria can grow and I don't trust the senses. Pat dry immediately and S&P.

      1. re: Nicole

        If it smells clean and fresh, no need to rinse.

        1. re: Nicole

          So you're scrubbing the meat, fish or poultry with very hot, very soapy water for at least a minute? If not, what bacteria do you think you're eliminating by rinsing the food for a few seconds under cold water? The bacteria (pathogens) die because of the heat and for no other reason. The only thing you're rinsing away is flavor, unless your goal is to get rid of a foreign substance such as bone chips or sand. Any recipe that starts with "rinse XXX and pat dry" are authored by the same individuals that think eggplants are either male or female. Additionally, if your raw food has an off odor, your problems are greater than a quick rinse can cure.

      2. My mom taught me I should rinse cuts where a bone has been sawed just to make sure there aren't bone chips that will catch me by surprise later. (Think T-Bone Steak)

        I don't rinse anything else.