When you’re preparing a Thanksgiving dinner, it’s important to make safety the primary ingredient. To do so, think about exercising some of the tips that have been provided by the Department of Health and Human Services of New Hampshire in a new report.
If you’re cutting up a turkey, or any raw meat for that matter, then make sure you’re not then using the same cutting board or surface for cutting up vegetables. If you fail to take this precaution, then you’re risking foodborne contaminants jumping from the raw item to the cutting surface and on to the ready-to-eat item. The same goes for forks and knives that you’re using to prepare products.
A meat thermometer is perhaps the primary weapon in your arsenal against foodborne illness. You shouldn’t simply make a judgment call as to whether or not a piece of meat is ready to serve. Your turkey needs to reach 165 at the absolute minimum, while other types of dishes may need to be cooked at different temperatures. The same 165 degrees must be reached by any leftovers you heat up later in the week.
Finally, don’t simply leave the food out for people to graze on over the course of the day. Once an item has been out for about two hours, the risk of an illness increases anew, and you should therefore refrigerate things once the meal is complete.