Every week, we provide you, our home cooks, with fresh ingredients and recipes to enjoy delicious meals at home. Ensuring that our customers are receiving high quality, fresh ingredients that are safe to eat is and always will be our highest priority. We have a comprehensive food safety program in place which is designed to ensure that food safety controls are effectively applied at every step of our supply chain, from the farm to your fork.
Food safety starts at the source. All of our suppliers & vendors undergo a comprehensive food safety assessment prior to working with us to ensure that they meet our food safety requirements. Our vendors are also subject to regular food safety assessments by our food safety experts and third-party auditors.
Dubai Municipality-Regulated Facilities
Our central processing unit is regulated by the Dubai Municipality as well as applicable emirate and local government agencies. We have a rigorous food safety program at our central processing unit located in Dubai to ensure the safety and quality of our ingredients.
Employee Training and Education
All our employees who handle food in any manner undergo a comprehensive food safety training program, in compliance with the Dubai Municipality Food Safety regulations including the appointment of a trained Person In-charge Program. The entire training module is based on various international certification and qualification bodies such as HABC (Highfield Awarding Body for Compliance) and CIEH (Chartered Institute for Environment Health).
We carefully pack and handle our boxes to maintain appropriate temperatures during transit and delivery, and our team of packaging and food safety experts regularly assess the efficacy of our packaging, which we modify as needed. Our Food Safety and Quality Assurance teams also conduct regular audits using temperature probes in simulated deliveries in temperature chambers, to ensure all our ingredients arrive at the appropriate temperatures, according to the Dubai Municipality guidelines for safe temperatures for transportation.
Point of Delivery
We advise our customers to place all perishable items in the refrigerator immediately upon delivery, understanding that they are receiving temperature-sensitive ingredients. Depending on the season and temperature in our geographic area at the time of delivery, advance planning may be needed to ensure immediate and proper storage of ingredients prior to consumption. If anything in your box is missing or if you are unsatisfied with the quality of one of your ingredients, we’ll make it right with our quality guarantee program. For further information, click……
Safe Food HandlingOnce you receive your Let’s Cook box, it’s critical that you practice the safe storage and handling of ingredients to maintain freshness and quality, and avoid any risk of food-borne illness.
To ensure optimal freshness, we advise that you unpack your ingredients into your fridge as soon as possible once they arrive and follow Dubai Municipality Instructions on refrigeration and food safety.
Cheese, Dairy, Eggs
Store in the refrigerator in the packaging provided. Remove just before using. The ideal refrigerator temperature is 5° C.
Meat and Poultry
Store in the refrigerator. The ideal refrigerator temperature is 5° C. Cuts of meat can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Ground meat can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 1 day. Chicken can be stored in refrigerator for up to 3 days. If you can’t cook your meat or poultry within these timeframes, you can store them in your freezer and thaw before cooking.
Store in the refrigerator. The ideal refrigerator temperature is 5° C. Fish and shellfish can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. If you can’t cook your seafood within these timeframes, you can store them in your freezer and thaw before cooking.
Check the packaging to determine which bread items are best stored in the fridge. The ideal refrigerator temperature is 5° C.
Pasta and Grains
Dried pasta and grains go in a cool, dry place. Fresh pasta goes straight into the refrigerator. The ideal refrigerator temperature is 5° C. Everything should be kept in its packaging until ready to use.
Fresh Produce & Fruit
Generally, we recommend storing all fruits and vegetables in the refrigerator, separate from raw meat, poultry and seafood. The ideal refrigerator temperature is 5° C.
There are a few exceptions to the refrigerator produce rule:
- Cucumbers: If you will be eating your cucumbers in 1 to 2 days, leave them on the counter. Any more than that and they may spoil at room temperature, so stick them in the fridge to preserve their crunch–if not their best-ever flavor.
- Fresh Herbs like Mint/ Parsley: To preserve your herbs at room temperature, store like a bouquet of flowers: Fill a glass, jug, or vase with water, then “plant” the herbs in it. You might want to trim the bottom every few days. Herbs can keep close to a week stored like this.
- Blueberries, peaches & other sweet fruit: If you want to enjoy blueberries or peaches at their sweet prime, you’ll do best not to refrigerate them. If you have more than you can eat in a day or two, you’ll want to stow them in the fridge in any case.
- Unripe avocados: If you’re starting out with an avocado that’s hard, leave it on the counter until it’s soft and ripe. Once it’s softened, you can slow down the ripening by transferring the fruit from the table to the fridge.
- Tomatoes: The optimal temperature for tomato storage is 18° C to 20° C, so pile them in a bowl and leave them on the countertop. Make sure to thoroughly wash and dry your tomatoes before use!
- Root Vegetables like Onions & Potatoes: Onions keep best in a cool, dry place with plenty of ventilation. Place them in a basket on the table or countertop, and set it in a spot that doesn’t get a ton of direct sunlight. Stored that way, onions should last for a while–likely more than a month.
Freezing and thawing
Make sure to safely thaw any frozen meat, poultry, or seafood before cooking. See below for the three safe ways to thaw meat, poultry, fish and shellfish once frozen according to the Dubai Municipality. Perishable foods should be kept refrigerated and never be thawed on the counter or in hot water.
In the refrigerator: easiest and safest option
- Plan ahead and thaw in the refrigerator (keeping the product in its sealed packaging) for about 1 day before using.
- After thawing in the refrigerator, items such as ground meat, stew meat, poultry and seafood should remain safe and good quality for an additional 1-2 days before cooking.
- Red meat cuts (beef or lamb roasts, chops and steaks) should remain safe and good quality for 3 days.
- Food thawed in the refrigerator can be refrozen without cooking, although there may be a loss of quality.
In cold water: quicker option, only to be used if cooking immediately afterwards
- Place food in a leak proof plastic bag and immerse it in cold water. (If the bag leaks, bacteria from the air or surrounding environment could be introduced into the food. Tissues can also absorb water like a sponge, resulting in a watery product.)
- Check the water frequently to be sure it stays cold.
- Change the water every 30 minutes.
- After thawing, cook immediately. Uncooked product cannot be refrozen.
In the microwave: only to be used if cooking immediately afterwards
- Microwave on the “defrost” setting and stop the defrost cycle while the meat, poultry or seafood is still icy but pliable.
- After thawing, cook immediately. Some areas of the food may become warm and begin to cook during microwaving. Uncooked product cannot be refrozen.
Food Handling and Cooking
To ensure safe food handling and cooking, follow the Dubai Municipality guidelines below:
Wash hands and surfaces often Wash your hands with warm water and soap for at least 20 seconds before and after handling food and after using the bathroom, changing diapers, and handling pets. Wash your cutting boards, dishes, utensils, and counter tops with hot soapy water after preparing each food item. Consider using paper towels to clean up kitchen surfaces. If you use cloth towels, launder them often in the hot cycle. Rinse fresh fruits and vegetables under running tap water, including those with skins and rinds that are not eaten. Scrub firm produce with a clean produce brush. With canned goods, remember to clean lids before opening.
Separate raw meats from other foods Separate raw meat, poultry, seafood, and eggs from other foods in your grocery shopping cart, grocery bags, and refrigerator. Use one cutting board for fresh produce and a separate one for raw meat, poultry, and seafood. Never place cooked food on a plate that previously held raw meat, poultry, seafood, or eggs unless the plate has been washed in hot, soapy water. Don’t reuse marinades used on raw foods unless you bring them to a boil first.
Cook to the right temperature Color and texture are unreliable indicators of safety. Using a food thermometer is the only way to ensure the safety of meat, poultry, seafood, and egg products for all cooking methods. These foods must be cooked to a safe minimum internal temperature to destroy any harmful bacteria. Cook eggs until the yolk and white are firm. Only use recipes in which eggs are cooked or heated thoroughly. When cooking in a microwave oven, cover food, stir, and rotate for even cooking. If there is no turntable, rotate the dish by hand once or twice during cooking. Always allow standing time, which completes the cooking, before checking the internal temperature with a food thermometer. Bring sauces, soups and gravy to a boil when reheating.
Refrigerate foods promptly Use an appliance thermometer to be sure the temperature is consistently 5° C or below and the freezer temperature is -18° C or below. Refrigerate or freeze meat, poultry, eggs, seafood, and other perishables within 2 hours of cooking or purchasing. Never thaw food at room temperature, such as on the counter top. There are three safe ways to defrost food: in the refrigerator, in cold water, and in the microwave. Food thawed in cold water or in the microwave should be cooked immediately. Always marinate food in the refrigerator. Divide large amounts of leftovers into shallow containers for quicker cooling in the refrigerator.
Chart: Food Safe Minimum Internal Cooking Temperatures
- Food Saftey Fact Sheets
- USDA Safe Minimum Internal Temperature Chart
- FDA guidance for Food Safe Handling
- USDA Basics for Handling Food Safely
- USDA Minimal Internal Temperature Chart
- FDA Guidance on At-Risk Groups: Pregnant women, young children, the elderly and individuals with compromised immune systems should follow the FDA’s recommendations on food consumption for at-risk groups.