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New user not sure if meat's cooked....

edited 6:19PM in EggHead Forum
Last night we fired up our new egg and figured we'd cook burgers. Easy, we thought. Did what we were told: Heated unit to 600 degrees, seared burgers on each side for 2.5 minutes, then shut the unit down and left burgers in there for 10 minutes. They seemed to be cooked through, no pink, altho I noticed they didn't seem too hot. Well, my husband and I got pretty severe stomach aches. Not comfortable at all. Was it the burgers? Do they get to the correct internal temp that way? To be fair to the egg, it could have been the tomatos, cheese, or other meal components. Thanks in advance.


  • GretlGretl Posts: 670
    Just to be on the safe side, invest in an instant-read thermometer. Inernal temperature for ground beef, eggs, and pork is 160 degrees F. Ground chicken, 165. Fish and beef, 145 and chicken, 180. I always use a Polder-clone digital thermometer for measuring poultry roasting in the Egg. It's very handy, as the unit sits outside the Egg and will signal when the desired internal temperature is reached. I'm sort of a Food Safety Nut and have thermometers in use often. Also remember to be careful about cross-contamination and don't use the same food prep surface for raw meat and vegetables. Gee, it's a wonder any of us manages to live from one day to the next, huh??
    Thanks for asking!
    p.s I hope you and your husband are feeling much better now.

  • KennyGKennyG Posts: 949
    Pearlie,[p]Sorry to hear about your bad early experience with your new toy.[p]I see nothing wrong with your cooking times and technique if your thermometer is reading accurately. Since you eliminated all the pink, you got the inside of the burgers up to at least 160+* which most consider "well done" for beef. I would suspect the other components as the source of the stomach aches. If you haven't already, pick up an inexpensive instant read thermometer and take the guesswork out of internal temps.[p]Hopefully, others will chime in on this one.[p]K~G
  • GfwGfw Posts: 1,598
    Pearlie, I agree with both KennyG and Gretl - first make sure that your dome thermometer is reading true (check out the link for an explanation) and if in doubt, take an internal temperature reading. At 600-650 degrees, I use the same method except on 6-8 minutes on the shut down - I like my burgers a little on the rare side.[p]Good luck and welcome to the forum.[p]

    [ul][li]Calibrating the Dome Thermometer[/ul]
  • Mike OelrichMike Oelrich Posts: 544
    Pearlie,[p] Good advice so far. I agree that if the meat was no longer pink (assuming it was fresh ground beef to begin with -- sometimes after you let ground meat sit in the fridge for a couple days or freeze it, it isn't as bright-red anymore and it's harder to tell doneness by color alone), it was probably fully cooked (but an internal temperature reading can tell you for sure). However, it is possible to get meat that is dangerous (due to how it was handled pre-cooking (e.g., by the supermarket staff)) even if you heat it enough. This occurs because many bacteria produce toxins that don't break down when you kill the bacteria (i.e., you kill the bacteria with the heat, but the toxins remain). I usually don't cook burgers to anything other than well-done if I use standard supermarket ground beef. In fact, I like to smoke those more than sear them (I like the "Humdinger Hamburgers" recipe in "Smoke and Spice"). I save the searing for the times I grind the meat fresh (from a chuck roast)-- then I feel better about eating medium-rare patties.[p]The only reason I can think of that they didn't seem "too hot" is that the BGE wasn't preheated well enough before you threw the burgers on. It's a long shot but with my BGE, I've noticed that the flames will sometimes touch the end of the thermometer during startup. This gives a very high temperature reading, but the temp goes way down when I throttle the air flow. I don't think the searing would be affected by this too much as long as the flames were kissing the meat. However, the dwell might take longer if the BGE is still trying to heat itself as well as your burgers.[p]MikeO
  • ZipZip Posts: 372
    Pearlie,[p]At this point there is no way to tell what caused it. The length of time spent in the egg at those temps, the burger was probably cooked through. Ground Beef can cause some problems, but let your nose guide you. If it doesn't smell right throw it out. If it is slick, throw it out. If you don't know that smell take a small amount of burger and place in the icebox for a couple of days and then smell and feel it. The smell and feel will stay with you, it wil be kinda sour - musky - strong beefy smell. Once you associate the smell, it will stay with you for life like the smell of electrical wires burning will get your attention. [p]
    Cheddar or processed cheeses usually don't give much problem. Tomatoes and veggies could possibly, but I doubt that was the case. [p]Hope this helps!

  • Char-WoodyChar-Woody Posts: 2,642
    Zip, Solid advice..I agree, if the burger was cooked to grey like interior as Perlie suggests, it might have been outdated meats. I have cooked some of mine to the medium stage and no problems..light pink in the middle. I usually go about 4 minutes per side at 400F and then "dwell or simmer" with all vents closed for another 5 to 8 minutes.
    Everyone seems to find the right combo after a few tries.

  • RhumAndJerkRhumAndJerk Posts: 1,506
    You have received the best possible advice so far. I can only add one small bit of advice, find a good butcher and stick with them. [p]When it comes to meat, I have only about two or three places that I will buy from. Those places do not include the local supermarket. Only on very rare occasions will I buy meat from the grocery store. I have small children, so I care very much where my meat comes from. I may just get a bad case of the lurch and run, but the consequences to them could be far worse.[p]Buying meat at the grocery store is a Crap Shoot at best. Hamburger is one of their ways of getting rid of meat that they should have sold yesterday but could not. You may pay a little more at a local butcher but you getting a better quality of meat the way that you want it. Also, a good butcher will not sell you anything that is questionable. [p]If you absolutely must buy you ground meat in a grocery store, pick a nice looking chuck roast and the have them grind it. At least that way, you are sure that the meat looked good originally. Although there is a gotcha there as well, if contaminated meat was ground prior to your meat being ground you may be in for a surprise. All it takes is for someone not to correctly clean the meat grinder and there you go.[p]I have been going to the same butcher for well over ten years now and they have never steered me wrong.[p]Hope this helps,

  • ZipZip Posts: 372
    RhumAndJerk,[p]This is pretty good advise, however the key is to find a "good" butcher. Most of the burger that is ground in the supermarket is boxed beef. They may have pieces of scrap from hundreds of cattle in a single box and is sold for grinding. This is where the problems begin. Irradiated meats if they catch on will really help this problem. You really want to stay away from 99 cent specials at grocery chains, as well as some butcher shops. [p]Alot of small butchers will grind frozen meat to make burger and do it several times a day. This helps, but sometimes you get someone that like to grind ice with the meat and are selling you water for the price of burger.[p]Zip

  • MACMAC Posts: 442
    GRRR...ATE pun there, "Steered me wrong"

  • RhumAndJerkRhumAndJerk Posts: 1,506
    The guy in our office who is from Lansing has yet to move. Drop me an email and let me know if you are interested in the charcoal.[p]RhumAndJerk[p]

  • MACMAC Posts: 442
    Bought 1/2 a pallet of Royal Oak from Gordons Food Service in Lansing. Had to guarante them I would take 15t bags. The price was $5.39 per bag. Tell your friend to get an EGG and thanks for thinking of me.

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