Thursday, 27 June 2013

Taking rice cereusly

Yes that was a deliberate mis-spelling, and yes it was meant to sound like 'seriously'.

Why is it that we are warned not to reheat the leftovers from a Chinese takeaway on the following day?

I had always assumed that it was because of risks associated with the prawns or chicken ingredients, but I was surprised to find out recently that this is not the case.  Some rice is contaminated with a bacteria called Bacillus Cereus, and certain strains of it are harmful to humans.  The bacteria exists in the raw cereal in the form of spores which are activated by moisture during cooking.  If the cooking is not thorough enough, some survive and as the rice cools, they multiply they produce a toxin, cereulide, which gives us food poisoning.  That toxin is not broken down by further cooking.

I must admit that I'm not very keen on rice.  It tends to taste slightly bitter to me, although I do enjoy fried rice with my Chinese dishes.  Little did I know that fried rice is one of the most risky forms.  If the rice has been boiled insufficiently, then not refrigerated quickly but subsequently re-cooked then it is at its most dangerous!

I think I still trust my favourite Chinese takeaway place though.  I always enjoy the food that they cook.

See another interesting an informative article here.

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