• Is it Safe to Eat Pink Duck?

    The Hygiene Doctor discusses whether you should serve rare duck

    I’m often asked if it is safe to eat pink duck. The most important thing is actually whether the temperature has got high enough for potentially dangerous bacteria such as Salmonella or Campylobacter to be killed.

    Cooking whole poultry

    If cooking a whole chicken or duck, check the area between the thigh and the breast (the thickest part); the core temperature should be 75°C.

    Cooking duck breast

    Pink duck is safe if it is over 75 CIf checking a duck breast, put the probe in the centre of thickest part of the breast.

    The good news is that it is possible to cook duck to this safe core cooking temperature and yet still retain some pinkness to the flesh, as shown from the photograph of my dinner last night!

    Remember that food continues to cook after you have taken it out of the pan or oven, which is why chefs “rest” meat after cooking – so take it off the heat a little early, put in the thermometer and leave it – watch the temperature go up till it reaches 75°C. If it doesn’t get that high, then take out the probe, (disinfect it) and pop the duck back in the pan again for a few minutes. You can always cook it a bit more if you need to.

    If you want to never over or under cook food again, buy a thermometer like this from Hygiene Audit Systems for only £20 please contact us on 01727 866779 for more details or to pay by credit card.

    Remember: if using a probe thermometer to check that food has reached a core temperature of 75°C, it must be clean and disinfected before use.

    Top tips to clean the thermometer:

    • Use an antibacterial spray and some paper towels
    • Use antibacterial wipes
    • Put the probe tip into boiling water (if you are doing peas or potatoes, then that is just fine)!

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