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Living Well in Yalobusha County

Volunteers, Participants Make 4-H Run

The MSU Extension- Yalobusha County offered a three-day 4-H Sewing Camp at the Extension Office in Coffeeville July 19 – 21.  Five participants (see picture) learned all about sewing tools and a sewing machine as they made three different projects –  a pin cushion, a reversible purse and the owl pillows (shown in picture). 

A special thanks is extended to the sewing volunteers who assisted with the program including Betty Baker Thomas, Sylvia Beene, Jean Smith, and Sue Hughes. Hands-on programs such as sewing could not be taught without dedicated volunteers such as these.  

Remember, we still need 4-H members and volunteers. The Family and Consumer Science Club will begin meeting again on Tuesday, August 29, at 4 p.m. There is no cost to join the Family and Consumer Science Club and 4-H is open to youth ages 8-18.  We would love to have some new 4-H members and we need adult 4-H Volunteers too.  

Volunteers are what makes our program work!  Volunteers can lead programs or they can assist when others lead programs. You don’t have to be an expert in any topic, you just have to be willing to help out.  If you or your child are interested in joining us or you would just like more information please contact me at p.redwine@msstate. edu or call the Extension Office at 675-2730.  

Check out our Facebook page at MSU-Yalobusha County Extension Service to see pictures of events that we have had or you can check out our online newsletter at go to Yalobusha County and see the past year’s newsletters.  We hope to see you in August!

Grill it Safely

I really can’t stress using a food thermometer enough.  When I train my 4-Hers for the cookout contest I always stress using a food thermometer to test their final cooking temperature. And when I teach school cafeteria workers or restaurant workers food safety through the nationally recognized ServSafe program, I stress using a food thermometer and even go as far as showing the different types and even how to calibrate them.  However, many home cooks never think to use a thermometer.  I dare say, that many probably do not even own a thermometer.  

I really don’t understand why people are so resistant to using a food thermometer when cooking. The only way to be sure that meat is cooked to a high enough internal temperature to destroy any harmful bacteria is with a thermometer.  This means on the grill, too. Many folks are not in the habit of using these tools and they are easily forgotten when cooking outside.

The safe minimum cooking temperature for ground meats, including beef, pork, veal and lamb, is 160 degrees.  If you have turkey or chicken burgers they should be cooked to an internal temperature of 165 degrees.  If you’re making steak or pork chops they only need to be cooked to 145 degrees.

While many folks use it as a guide, color is not a good indicator for doneness of ground beef. If raw ground beef is somewhat brown to start with, it may look fully cooked before it reaches a safe temperature. Conversely, some burgers may still be pink and have already reached a safe temperature.

Chicken and other poultry are usually associated with the bacteria called salmonella. It takes a little higher temperature to destroy this, so that’s why all chicken or other poultry should be cooked to a minimum internal temp of 165 degrees F.

The take-home message:  if you don’t have a food thermometer—think about buying one. If you already have one, please dig it out and use it. It takes the guess work out of cooking meats and lets you have confidence that the meat you’re serving will not make someone sick.

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MSU Extension Service


Crochet MHV will meet on Thursday, July 27, at 10 a.m.  The group is led by volunteer Karol Jarman. You will need to bring the yarn of your choice and a crochet hook. 

There will be a one day ServSafe – Food Safety Certification Class offered at the Yalobusha Extension Office on Thursday, August 31. The last day to register and pay your fee for this class is July 31.  The fee is $140 and should be paid by money order or cashier’s check.  For more information call the Extension office at 675-2730.

Healthy You exercise classes are free and continue to meet every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 9 to 9:45 a.m. Wear cool, comfortable clothes, good walking shoes and bring some water to drink.  The medical professional will be here on Wednesday, August 9, at 8:45 a.m. to test blood pressure and glucose. This is a free service for all Healthy You exercise participants.

It’s hard to believe it is already time for MSU Christmas Cheese orders, but it is!  The MSU Cheese Store encourages everyone to place their orders to ensure that you get your cheese order filled.  If you are a past customer, you should have received an order form in the mail and should send your order and payment to the cheese store – just make sure to mark on the top of your order that Yalobusha County Extension will pick up.  If you are ordering for the first time, you can call the Extension office at 675-2730 to place your order and then you will be sent a bill from the cheese store. The cheese will be picked up around the first week of December.

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