Ultra-Cautious CDC Wants You To Cook Your Prosciutto and Salami
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) told the public yesterday that we should cook their charcuterie meats until steam emanates. This guidance stems from a salmonella outbreak in 17 states that the agency thinks is linked to prosciutto, salami, and the like. Setting aside the fact that cooking prosciutto until it’s well-done is demonic behavior, it’s worth noting that the outbreak has made just 36 people sick, with 12 hospitalizations and zero deaths so far.
To the CDC’s credit, it notes that salmonella is especially harmful for children under 5 and adults over 65; for the vast majority of the adult population, salmonella infections are not especially severe (though best to avoid). But the CDC has a long history of urging people to do things that they quite obviously won’t actually do. The agency recommends cooking steak until it reaches an internal temperature of 145 degrees (rare steak is therefore in violation), says we should cook eggs until both yolks and whites are firm, and tells women to limit their alcohol consumption to one standard drink or less per day (HA!).
Forget beef carpaccio or steak tartare or jammy egg korma. Forget eggs benedict replete with savory hollandaise (or anything poached or soft-boiled). Forget a scorpion bowl or an ultra-boozy jungle bird or a Philadelphia Fish House Punch, which will surely exceed the highly restrictive one-drink limit for the delicate ladyfolk. For pregnant women, the CDC’s recommendations are even more restrictive: no soft cheeses, sushi, unpasteurized milk, or booze. (“There is no safe time to drink alcohol during pregnancy,” says the CDC. Parenting-data guru Emily Oster notes that “many studies of low or moderate prenatal alcohol exposure show no impacts.”)
The CDC’s ideal restaurant would be one where the prosciutto is boiled, the egg yolks are not jammy, the steak is well-done, only a single glass of wine is consumed, and you wear a mask between bites. https://t.co/VJIyrP6IQB
— Liz Wolfe (@lizzywol) August 25, 2021
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