The original item was published from November 24, 2015 9:30 AM to November 24, 2015 9:31 AM
Turkey Day Tips: How to Prepare the Right Way
Whether you're a seasoned chef or a novice preparing your first holiday meal, make sure you know the safest ways to thaw, prepare, stuff and cook your turkey.
A package of frozen meat or poultry left thawing on the counter more than 2 hours is not at a safe temperature. Even though the center of the package may still be frozen, the outer layer of the food is in the "Danger Zone" between 40 and 140 °F at a temperature where foodborne bacteria multiply rapidly. A frozen turkey needs 24 hours for each 4-5 pounds to thaw in the refrigerator. There are three safe ways to thaw food: 1) in the refrigerator, 2) in cold water and 3) in the microwave oven. Always remember to plan ahead!
Learn the turkey basics by visiting www.cdc.gov/features/turkeytime/