GREENSBORO, NC -- Cooking meat at the right temperature is necessary if you don't want to get sick on your own cooking. And we can all learn something from restaurants. Culinary instructor Al Romano from GTCC says it's three words: temp your food.
Many of us cook chicken on something like a George Foreman grill because it's less messy and we think it's a little bit healthier. The problem is chicken on a small grill doesn't often reach the right temperature - 165 degrees for 15 seconds - the time and temp that kills bacteria so you don't get sick.
Al did an experiment for us on a George Foreman. One chicken breast right out of the package and this one he butterflied so it would be a little bit thinner."
After about twenty minutes, Al stuck thermometers in both. "In the thicker breast, you see it's about 150 or 160. The thinner one. That's killing it."
Al says, "To get the thicker chicken breast to reach 165 degrees, we'd have to cook it for a long time which would dry it out and make it taste like rubber. But you can't take a chance. You have to cook it all the way through. It's not like a steak that you could have medium rare. Chicken you can't serve medium rare."