The Washington Post
November 21, 2020 | 10:44 AM
Experts warn that Thanksgiving gatherings may contribute to the unfold of covid-19. But there’s one other sort of illness to be cautious of whereas cooking your Turkey Day feast: foodborne sickness.
An estimated 1 in 6 Americans get sick from foodborne sickness every year, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention studies.
And due to the various pitfalls of getting ready and storing numerous meals, Thanksgiving could be prime time for foodborne pathogens.
Improper defrosting and dealing with of turkey, which most cooks put together solely annually, may cause fast micro organism development. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, there are three secure methods to thaw meals.
In the fridge, cooks ought to thaw the fowl in a container that holds any juices launched through the thaw and plan for not less than 24 hours for every 4 to 5 kilos. The USDA recommends the fridge be set at a temperature of 40 levels or under for the thaw.
Another possibility is a cold-water thaw – about half-hour per pound for a wrapped turkey, with water modified each half-hour. It’s additionally secure to defrost within the microwave, so long as the turkey is cooked instantly after.
Never wash uncooked turkey, the CDC warns: According to a 2019 USDA research, 60% of cooks who washed uncooked poultry had micro organism of their sink afterward. Use a separate slicing board for the uncooked meat and by no means put cooked meat again on a floor the place uncooked turkey sat. And be sure turkey and stuffing get to an inner temperature of not less than 165 levels earlier than serving.
Improper storage of cooked meals is one other danger. Outbreaks of Clostridium perfringens, the second commonest reason behind bacterial foodborne infections, happen most frequently in November and December, when gatherings result in numerous leftovers.
To fight the micro organism, which grows in cooked meals at room temperature, make sure to refrigerate leftovers as quickly as doable. The CDC recommends cooked meals be unnoticed for under two hours after preparation.
About 128,000 hospitalizations every year are brought on by foodborne sicknesses. With the U.S. hospital system stretched to its restrict due to covid-19, it’s value a bit of additional warning throughout your Thanksgiving meal.
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