Another week, another interpretation exercise. This speech on the relation between health and the right temperatures to cook meat will help you practice your interpreting skills. Note: The Speech starts STRAIGHT AWAY!
Topic(s): Culinary, Health, Farming
Terms: rare, medium rare, well done, safe minimum temperature, United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), E.coli, whole-muscle cuts, surface contamination, salmonella, livestock, trichinosis, parasitic disease
Also check these books to learn and practice interpreting.
Good For Practicing:
- Interpreting note-taking
- Non-standard accent
- Health-related terminology
Also available on Speechpool.
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*Please check the script only after you’ve done the note-taking exercise, otherwise that’s cheating! 🙂
‘Have you ever wondered why eating rare beef is generally considered to be safe, but not rare chicken?
One of the things that I used to find confusing when I was learning how to cook was the so called safe minimum temperatures.
At first, I could not understand why certain meats could be served rare – essentially still pink at the centre – while others have to be cooked thoroughly. After all it’s just meat. Shouldn’t it all be the same?
I remember learning the rules, but I never really bothered to look for a scientific explanation. I learned that beef can be served rare, medium rare, medium and so forth, depending on the person’s personal preference; chicken and pork, however, should always be well done.
That was until I came across an article published in 2011 by the United States Department of Agriculture.
On May 24th, they announced some important changes in their recommended cooking temperatures for meat, and here’s the one that really got my attention: apparently, pork can – after all – be consumed without being fully brown on the inside.
But how? How can an unsafe way of cooking meat suddenly become safe?
So here’s the basic explanation. First, beef can be served rare because studies have shown that bacteria – especially E.coli – don’t survive the cooking process, as long as the steaks aren’t touched by any unclean kitchen utensil. This has been tested by the University of Nottingham in 2004.
Second, unlike beef, chicken cannot be eaten raw due to the meat’s structure. Raw beef generally comes from whole-muscle cuts, which helps prevent surface contamination; that doesn’t happen with chicken. The only way to guarantee a desirable level of safety is by cooking it well.
What’s more, it is estimated that around 20 percent of packaged raw chicken sold in the U.S. tests positive for salmonella. Let’s say that the risks are just too high…
So that’s that. But what about pork? Surely the structure of the meat hasn’t changed all of the sudden. How come the USDA lowered the safe minimum temperature?
Apparently, that has to do with a considerable progress in the way livestock is raised. Before the introduction of modern farming and feeding practices, undercooked pork was a common source of trichinosis, a parasitic disease you most definitely don’t want to have to deal with.
Thanks to that, with trichinosis being so rare these days (no pun intended), the USDA now considers that pork cooked at 145 degrees Fahrenheit (that’s approximately 63 degrees Celsius) is perfectly fine to eat. Before that, the recommended temperate used to be around 71 degrees Celsius.
But does that mean I have changed the way I do things in the kitchen? Quite frankly, no. Even if a major governmental ministry suggests me otherwise, my mum’s advice on how to cook meat has served me well all this time, so I guess I’d rather stick to it.’