NDSU Extension Service - Sargent County

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Tons of Turkey Stuff

Whether you are a “seasoned” cook, or a first-timer, the University of Nebraska/Lincoln website has something for everyone when it comes to topics related to turkey. From a countdown of "what to do when" as you plan ahead for Thanksgiving day, to how to safely thaw the turkey, to recipes and instructions for preparing the bird, stuffing, gravy and pie, to how to carve the turkey, to what to do with the leftovers, the UNL website, http://food.unl.edu/safety/thanksgiving-food-prep, has it all!


Thawing the turkey properly and cooking it thoroughly will help reduce the chances that you or your family and guests experience any unfortunate food safety incidents. The USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline will be staffed with food safety specialists to take your questions and “talk turkey” with you on Thanksgiving Day from 7:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. The toll-free number is 1-888-674-6854.

With just a few simple substitutions and adjustments, it’s easy to make the holiday meal healthier by cutting the fat, reducing the sodium, and boosting the fiber. Specific tips can be found at http://food.unl.edu/c/document_library/get_file?uuid=c09eee50-2157-4e57-8e34-836048552f21&groupId=4089482&.pdf.

If you or your guests are transporting food to share once everyone is at the table, be sure to transport it safely to minimize the risks of it becoming a food safety risk. Keep “the two hour rule” in mind, making sure that hot foods from the oven, and cold foods from the refrigerator don’t spend more than two hours at room temperature.

"Leftovers" quite often get baa-humbug reactions, but “planned-overs” are an entirely different matter. Cook once, eat twice is a great management strategy that allows you use extra turkey for soups, salads, entrees, and appetizers in planned-over ways.

My all-time favorite message about Thanksgiving is, “When we pause to think, we have cause to thank.” Here’s hoping you enjoy the meal, relish the time you spend with people who you care about, and make some memories to treasure forever.  

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