Q. With barbeque season just around the corner, I have a question about marinating meat. In the past, we have used some of the marinade as a dipping sauce for the cooked meat. Now, I’m wondering if this practice could cause someone to get sick. What is your opinion?
A. You are right to be concerned about the safety of marinating meats. To make sure you are serving a safe product, begin by marinating food in the refrigerator, not on the counter. If you want to use some of the marinade as a sauce on the cooked food, reserve a portion of the marinade before putting raw meat and poultry in it. Finally, be sure to apply the final basting of marinade to your meat and give it enough time for the sauce to be thoroughly heated before removing the meat from the grill.
Q. Last year, I had lots of leaves on my potato plants, but no potatoes. What happened?
A. You probably were impatient. Potatoes will grow extensive vegetation above ground prior to tuber initiation. Be patient, and you probably will see small tubers forming prior to when flowers are formed above ground.
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Q. What legume forage crop can I plant between alfalfa stands for hay?
A. While it is best to rotate to a grass plant, berseem clover could be planted. Berseem clover has not been shown to cause bloat and can produce very well for an annual legume. Berseem clover hay quality is good and would be planted in the spring to produce two cuttings of hay. Herbicides are limited.
Q. I am an elementary school teacher. Is there anything the 4-H program can do for teachers?
A. Teachers can use 4-H curricula in their classrooms, they can access 4-H after-school programs and even start their own 4-H clubs. For more information, go to www.4-hmall.org or for other related local information, call the WSU Franklin County Extension Office at 509-545-3511.
-- Questions should be called in to the WSU Extension offices in Kennewick at 735-3551 or Pasco at 545-3511.