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It’s Thanksgiving so there’s a very good chance turkey is somewhere on the dinner menu.
When cooking a turkey, however, you need to be aware of four important safety issues: thawing, preparing, stuffing and cooking.
Never leave a turkey out on the counter to thaw overnight.
Bacteria can grow rapidly in raw turkey when its temperature is between 40 to 140 degrees.
The CDC recommends it be thawed in the microwave, refrigerator or in a sink of cold water that is changed every 30 minutes.
While preparing the turkey, make sure to wash hands and surfaces often.
And keep raw turkey separate from other items so bacteria doesn’t spread.
If you’re stuffing your bird, do so just before cooking.
And make sure you cook a stuffed turkey at a temperature higher than 325∞.
While it’s cooking, it’s critical that you use a food thermometer.
This will help you ensure the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees, high enough to kill any bacteria.
And when you’re checking the temperature, make sure you’re checking it in the correct spot, which is between the leg and the thickest part of the breast.
Follow these tips and you will have a happy and healthy turkey day.