Lamb on a shovel in a fire pit: finger test insufficient

Once the kid goes to sleep, Amy and I usually adjourn to the bedroom, no matter how early, and chill.

I go through my ritual of flipping through bad TV while Amy does fascinating farm animal things on Facebook.

Last night, my flipping took me to the Primal Grill With Steven Raichlen, where the dude was cooking lamb chops on a shovel in a fire pit.

Apparently, by holding the shovel over the open wood fire, the smoke curls up over the shovel to add a robust flavor to the chops.

This guy’s got way too much time on his hands.

To check if the lamb was properly cooked, he pushed his finger into a chop, proclaimed it “spongy” and therefore done.

However you want to cook meat – with a shovel, a pick-axe, a V-8 engine — use a tip-sensitive digital thermometer to ensure a safe food temperature.

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About Douglas Powell

A former professor of food safety and the publisher of, Powell is passionate about food, has five daughters, and is an OK goaltender in pickup hockey. Download Doug’s CV here. Dr. Douglas Powell editor, retired professor, food safety 3/289 Annerley Rd Annerley, Queensland 4103 61478222221 I am based in Brisbane, Australia, 15 hours ahead of Eastern Standard Time