Stick it in with a thermometer, not a finger (yours or anyone else’s)

Canada’s version of state-sponsored jazz, CBC Radio, is the latest entrant in the terrible food safety advice category.

After several minutes of seductive food porn talk about the perfect burger, food and nutritionist columnist Julie Van Rosendaal said on CBC Calgary morning rare.hamburgerradio show, The Eyeopener, on April 30, 2012, I don’t know anyone who checks burgers with a thermometer.

One of the hosts had opined that people are told to get their burgers well-done, yet this one looks medium rare.

Van Rosendaal derisively pooh-poohed the question, saying something about the temperature should be 160F, adding that, “I don’t know many people who stick a meat thermometer in their burger,” and that cooks can tell when it’s done when it springs back when you touch the patty, rather than a finger sliding into the patty.

The clip is 7:48 long, and they start talking about this at 5:30. It’s available at

Color is a lousy indicator of hamburger safety. So is finger-banging beef. Use a tip-sensitive digital thermometer and stick it in. The refs are all here.