The prize for Best BBQ Tool at the 2012 The National Barbecue Association conference did not go to a fancy grilling gadget. It was a simple inexpensive, indispensable, refrigerator magnet.
The AmazingRibs.com Meat Temperature Magnet by barbecue guru "Meathead" Goldwyn is a comprehensive guide to meat temperatures. It includes the latest USDA recommendations as well as chef recommendations (and they often differ) as well as color photos of the different stages of doneness for red meats. Designed for quick reference, the temperatures are the same for both indoor and outdoor cooks.
Most cookbooks contain outdated meat temperature info since the USDA has changed its recommendations several times. Knowing the best temps is essential to cooking safe and cooking great food. The Center for Disease Control estimates that each year roughly 1 in 6 Americans gets sick from foodborne illnesses, often mistakenly called "stomach flu," and 3,000 die. And nobody knows how many millions of dollars were wasted on overcooked food.
“Meathead converted me after 30 years of poking my meat with my finger and throwing out a lot of overcooked steaks,” laughs Brad Barrett, manufacturer of GrillGrate, an innovative cooking surface for grills. "I was so impressed by the guide on his website that I converted it to a magnet and got exclusive rights to sell it." Barrett offers it for $5.99 on Amazon.
"Cooking without a thermometer is like driving without a speedometer. A good temperature guide and a digital thermometer are essential for every cook, especially backyard cooks," says Meathead, whose website is ranked the world's most popular barbecue and grilling site by comScore and others.
Although he does not sell anything on his strictly educational website, Meathead explains the guide in detail and links to it on Amazon. He also has a buyer's guide to thermometers. Both are on AmazingRibs.com.