With turkey dinners being planned for Thanksgiving weekend, the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit is reminding cooks to prepare the bird properly to avoid foodborne illnesses.
The health unit’s tips include:
• Make a fresh turkey the last item picked up while shopping, and use a separate bag for the bird to catch any juices that could contaminate other groceries and surfaces. Refrigerate as soon as possible.
• Thaw a frozen turkey in the fridge, microwave or under cold running water. Do not thaw at room temperature, as this allows harmful bacterial to multiply.
• Before and after handling the turkey, hands should be washed in warm water with liquid soap. Wash and sanitize all utensils, wiping cloths, countertops and cutting boards.
• Cook turkey to at least 82C (180F).
• When carving the turkey, use a clean plate and utensils. Do not reuse utensils that have touched raw turkey unless they have been washed and sanitized.
• Leftovers should be refrigerated promptly at 4C (40F) or colder.
For more tips on preparing turkey properly, call 705-721-7520 or visit simcoemuskokahealth.org.