What is the minimum temperature at which hot foods on a buffet should be maintained?
The ideal temperature to maintain foods is 60 - 65 Degree Celsius / 140- 145 F.
When holding foods for service, such as on a buffet line, always remember to keep hot foods hot and cold foods cold. Hot-holding equipment must be able to keep foods at a temperature of 135ºF or higher
When holding hot foods for service, observe the following guidelines:
• Stir the food at regular intervals, as it will help distribute heat evenly throughout the food.
• Keep the food covered as covering will help retain heat and eliminate potential contaminates from falling into the food.
• Use a food thermometer to measure the food’s internal temperature every two hours.
• Discard any hot food after four hours if it has not been maintained at a temperature of 135ºF or higher.
Other safety precautions regarding hot-holding foods include never using hot-holding equipment to reheat foods. Foods to be reheated should first be heated to an internal temperature of 165ºF and then transferred to the hot-holding equipment. Also, never mix freshly prepared food with foods being held for service as this practice can result in contaminated foods.
Info courtesy: Shugufta M. Zubair, Food Awarness Officer, Food Safety Department, Dubai Municipality