The cooking time is determined by the weight of one bird—not the combined weight. Use the weight of the smaller bird to determine cooking time. Use a food thermometer to check the internal temperature of the smaller bird first and then check the second bird. A whole turkey is safe when cooked to a minimum internal temperature of 165 °F as measured with a food thermometer. Check the internal temperature in the innermost part of the thigh and wing and the thickest part of the breast. When cooking two turkeys at the same time make sure there is enough oven space for proper heat circulation.
The holiday season is the time to share good times with family and friends. It is not the time to share foodborne illness!
While food safety is important every day of the year, extra emphasis is given during the holidays because of large gatherings and lots of food being served.
Many resources on holiday food safety can be found at www.ksre.k-state.edu/foodsafety/topics/holiday.html. This includes giving food to food pantries and mailing food to family and friends. Quantity cooking resources can be found at www.ksre.k-state.edu/foodsafety/topics/preparation.html.
Don’t wash any poultry or meat!
The holiday season is here and parties and gatherings are being planned to celebrate the season. Whether it is a small gathering or a large office potluck, remember to bring healthy treats to curb high-calorie snacking.
Holidays offer many food temptations. Spread out the sweet treats so they are not lurking around every corner. Guests will appreciate lighter, non-sweet options more than you think. Parties can be stressful for some because they feel overwhelmed and forget that the season should be fun. This leads to mindless snacking and extra calories.
Offer healthy choices such as using whole wheat bread for sandwiches and seltzer water with fruit instead of soda. Encourage people to take a walk to work off holiday stress and anxiety.
Do you have several parties to attend? Plan ahead to help reduce those extra calories. Eat a small meal for breakfast with whole grains, fruit and protein. Don’t starve yourself thinking you’ll save room for party food. Take small bites and savor the delicious party foods. Go through the buffet once to reduce nibbling.
Above all, take time to relax and enjoy the holiday season!
Source: www.cdc.gov/features/healthy-holidays-work/index.html and www.eatright.org/health/lifestyle/seasonal/helpful-tips-for-healthy-holiday-parties
Hosts for holiday meals spend a lot of time planning and carrying out a festive meal. If you require special dietary needs, offer to help the host and reduce their stress. Here are some tips:
- Let the host know of your diet restrictions ahead of time to lessen last minute changes.
- Bring your favorite dish that you can eat, such as a hearty salad or casserole.
- Thank your host for their efforts, but also be honest with them and other guests as to why you cannot eat a meal item.
Source: Tufts Health & Nutrition Letter Special Supplement, November 2017
Food gifts are a tasty treat for loved ones far away from home. Consider foods that are healthy and easy to make.
- Non-perishable foods are best. You don’t want to give the gift of foodborne illness!
- Choose firm and chewy cookies. Place them back-to-back and wrap with plastic wrap.
- Bar cookies ship well, but avoid recipes with cream cheese or other high amounts of dairy ingredients.
- Pack in a small box or tin. Place inside another box with packing material.
To ship internationally, check the www.usps.com/ website for shipping deadlines.