The holidays are a time to relax, away from the stresses of work; unless you’re on cooking duty for Thanksgiving.
Food allergies, the pets and children taking food from the kitchen counter and the one relative who refuses to eat turkey are just a few of the issues of cooking a Thanksgiving dinner.
So here at Always Food Safe we have 3 tips to make sure the food tastes great and is safe to eat.
Step 1 – Always wash your hands
Sounds obvious, right? We think so as well, but we’re always amazed by the number of people who do not wash their hands correctly.
Humans are the biggest cause of cross contamination, and a simple way to stop this is by washing your hands properly.
Below is a step by step guide to correct hand washing:
1. Wet your hands with running water — either warm or cold.
2. Apply liquid, bar or powder soap.
3. Lather well.
4. Rub your hands vigorously for at least 20 seconds. Remember to scrub all surfaces, including the backs of your hands, wrists, between your fingers and under your fingernails.
5. Rinse well.
6. Dry your hands with a clean or disposable towel or air dryer.
7. If possible, use a towel or your elbow to turn off the faucet.
Step 2 – Stopping vehicles of contamination
A usual Thanksgiving meal will consist of vegetables, turkey and stuffing. Some of these are “high risk foods” and some are “low risk”, so it is important that the food is prepared correctly, to avoid cross contamination. Watch the below video for an understanding of how to keep your food safe.
Step 3 – Cooking the perfect turkey
Before cooking the turkey, the USDA recommends thawing the turkey in the refrigerator, but you’ll need plenty of time since refrigerator thawing requires 24 hours for every 4 to 5 pounds.
As point one alludes to, make sure you wash your hands with warm water for 20 seconds before touching any food.
DO NOT WASH THE TURKEY!
That spreads pathogenic bacteria onto kitchen services.
Make sure the turkey is cooked until 165 Fahrenheit, the best way to check this is a thermometer in the thickest part of the breast.