It’s become a tradition at Food Safety News to take a break on major holidays by hosting a virtual potluck or picnic, held entirely online for our far-flung staff.


So we’re celebrating Independence Day 2011 by once again sharing our dishes – Mary’s farmers’ market veg dip, Cookson’s garden-fresh potato salad, Suzanne’s Aunt Sandy’s spinach and strawberry salad, Helena’s apricot-rosemary halibut, Andy’s Everyman’s Gumbo, Dan’s Fried Ice Cream Cake Sticks and Gretchen’s coconut berry lime cake.

We’re often asked if writing about foodborne illness makes us reluctant eaters. Far from it. We relish good food and all the healthy choices available. To us, food freedom means the right to spend our grocery dollars with growers and producers who see safe food-handling practices not as an inconvenience or cost, but as a responsibility to protect their customers and the public health, and therefore an essential part of doing business. Independence Day is a good day to think about freedom from fear.

Have a food-safe Fourth of July.

The Food Safety News team 


This is a favorite of mine. It’s super simple, takes no time at all and is a great dish for summer. (Adapted from a recipe card found in a grocery store.)


2 lbs. halibut fillets
1 (18 oz.) jar apricot preserves
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons orange rind, grated
2 tablespoons fresh rosemary, chopped
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper, freshly ground


-Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
-Place fish in a lightly-buttered shallow baking dish and set aside.
-In a saucepan, on medium-low heat, stir together apricot preserves, garlic, orange peel, rosemary, salt and pepper until heated.
-Pour mixture over the fish and bake for 15 minutes or until the fish flakes with a fork.