The summer season is just naturally meant for outdoor grilling;  the combination of nice weather and the opportunity to cook meat and vegetables outside - on a deck or patio - is irresistible - especially here in the Northland, where we spend 6 months or so buried under snow.  Whether it's burgers and sausage, steak and chicken, or corn and asparagus, it seems like everyone loves to grill.

And as much as people love to grill their food, they also hate to get sick from it.

As a life-long cook, food safety to me is just common sense.  But apparently some people have issues and questions.  Just in time for the summer grilling season, the United States Department of Agriculture has issued a call for outdoor chefs to use thermometers this summer when grilling food - especially meat.

Using a thermometer is common sense in the kitchen (or the outdoor deck) when preparing food.  Simply put - if you know the temperature of your food, you know if it's been cooked properly;  it can also be your guide to cooking meat to a desired degree of "done-ness" (i.e. if you know the internal temperature of the meat, you know if it's rare, medium, or well done).