There are many food and cooking myths circulating out there. Some hold true, but many do not. Here are five things you might have heard of (or even advise it), but are proven to be just mere myths.
1. Microwaved food gives you cancer
There are many misconceptions about microwaves, and one such example is that the radiation gives you cancer. According to The American Cancer Society, microwaves pose no threat to humankind if it is used properly. Microwaves use radio-frequency (RF) radiation, which is similar to the type of radiation that surrounds us. Therefore, it is safe to consume food that has been microwaved!
The truth: “Nutrients break down when exposed to heat, no matter the source. Since microwaving is so quick and uses very little liquid, it preserves more nutrients than other cooking methods such as boiling or baking,” as quoted from here.
2. Drizzling olive oil prevents pasta from sticking together
How many of us drizzle olive oil into a boiling pot of pasta in the efforts to prevent it from sticking together? That is however, unnecessary.
The tip: Bring the water to a boil and then put in the pasta to prevent strands of pasta from sticking together. Boiling water constantly moves the pasta around so it would not stick. Otherwise, stir your pasta regularly to keep them well separated.
Also, refrain from drizzling oil onto your pasta after it is strained, because that could make the pasta slippery, and preventing the sauce from sticking (and not to mention the extra calories). More info here.
3. Food turns bad when you refrigerate it while it’s still hot
The truth: Hot food does not turn bad if you refrigerate it immediately. However, every minute your food is exposed, it invites bacteria to settle and gives it more time for spoilage.
Storing hot food immediately does makes your fridge work a little harder, but unlike earlier versions, fridges nowadays allow one to keep hot food safely without compromising on its operability. Source here.
4. It’s okay to eat food that’s dropped as long as it’s within five seconds
If someone cries, “quick, the five-second rule!” again when you drop your food, tell them to stop. Bacteria does not wait five seconds to contaminate your food, and even if you are able to pick it up with haste, your food might still contain bacteria that could make you sick. Also, if the surface of your food is wet, it picks up bacteria more easily. Dirty food could give you food poisoning that includes diarrhea, nausea, and vomiting.
The rule: Better be safe than sorry – always throw away the bits of food you drop! Source here.
5. White chocolate is part of the chocolate family
The truth: Although white chocolate has the word “chocolate” in it, it is not really part of the family. White chocolate has no cocoa solid, but only cocoa butter (some cheaper versions replace that with vegetable oil). While dark chocolate contains antioxidants and stimulant properties, white chocolate does not. Sorry! Source here.