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Video:Safety Tips for Thawing a Whole Turkey

with Cathy Straub

Thawing a whole frozen turkey takes time and needs to be done properly to ensure the meat is prepared properly. Watch these safety tips for thawing a whole turkey so you can cook your Thanksgiving dinner confidently.See Transcript

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Transcript:Safety Tips for Thawing a Whole Turkey

Hi, this is Cathy Straub for About.com and today I'm going to share with you some safety tips for thawing your turkey.

Do Not Thaw a Turkey at Room Temperature

One of the first safety tips i need to remind you of is that it is never okay to leave your turkey sitting out on the countertop at room temperature to thaw. Leaving any perishable food at room temperature for more than two hours is going to allow bacteria to just continue to grow, and even a small turkey is going to take more than two hours to thaw.

Check the Turkey's Temperature Before Roasting

If you are going to be defrosting your turkey in the refrigerator, make sure that you do place it in a pan. So if there are any juices that leak from the turkey, they do not contaminate any other foods in your refrigerator. If you are defrosting your turkey in the sink, be sure that you change out the water every thirty minutes and don't leave it sitting in the water any longer than necessary to thaw. In order to stop the spread of bacteria, the turkey should not read and internal temperature above 40 degrees until you are ready to cook it.

Disinfect Surfaces After Thawing the Turkey

After you are done thawing in the sink, make sure to disinfect your sink with a bleach solution so that you are not transferring any bacteria into other foods or dishes you may be washing in the sink. Be sure to wash your hands with soap and warm water after touching raw turkey before handling any other foods. Thank you for watching. For more tips and information visit food.about.com!

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