Happy Safe Thanksgiving

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The turkey is trimmed and the stuffing is made and you have great new ideas this year for cooking. You are ready to outdo yourself yet again this year with the cooking and family and friends are ready to dig into your cornucopia of mouth watering delights.

It is also a time to be very careful of fires. Kitchen fires are the leading cause of fires in America. So if you plan on putting that turkey in the oven, or heating up that pie keep in mind there are some great tips that can help you have a wonderful holiday.

Since Thanksgiving is about cooking it is important to know a few safety tips for fire. First, if you have had too much to drink, avoid using the stove. You want to be alert when cooking. If you are frying or grilling in the kitchen, then stay in the kitchen. This way you can avoid any possible fires. If your oven is on fire, then keep the oven door closed and remember the three numbers that can save your life, 911.

Stove accessories tend to get in the way and creates fire as well. Watch out for those hot pads and oven mitts. Be careful where you put put them and avoid placing them on the stove or a hot surface. It is a sure fire waiting to happen.

Foodborne illness is another problem that can turn a special event into a medical emergency. Foodborne illness symptoms can include vomiting, diarrhea, and flu-like symptoms. There is no need to fret though. There are a few things you can do to help avoid such illness.

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Be sure to wash your hands frequently when cooking. More important, wash each surface like your cutting boards, dishes, utensils, countertops with soap and water. It might even be a good idea to use one cutting board raw meat and one for fresh vegetables. You want to avoid cross-contamination at all cost.

Try to remember when you are reheating to bring sauces, soups, and gravies to a rolling boil. This helps kill bacteria. In addition, rinse all vegitables to help reduce bacteria before serving,

Finally, make sure the turkey is done. It may look beautiful as it turns brown and the smell makes your taste buds dance, however, just because it looks done does not mean it is done. Be sure to insert a food thermometer into the part of the thigh and wing and the thickest part of the breast. The turkey is safe when the temperature reaches 165ºF.

Remember it is fun to nibble, but make sure you put foods away so it doesn’t spoil. You can always reheat them when it is time to nibble away at your divine delights.

Have a healthy and safe Thanksgiving, and remember the safest tip of all, please do not drink and drive.

The Times Tribune

Food Poison Journal

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