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Keep Turkey Stuffing from Salmonella Bacteria

Public health officials have warned about the serious problems turkey stuffing can cause.

Each holiday season, between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day, there are cases of severe illness due to food poisoning caused by improper handling of turkey stuffing. The salmonella bacteria are the culprits. They like to lurk in the middle of incompletely cooked poultry, right where you put the stuffing. So never stuff the bird the night before. Stuff it only right before you roast it, and remove all the stuffing as quickly as possible after roasting. If you put the stuffing into a cheesecloth bag before you stuff it into the bird, it will be very easy to remove.

Freezing does not kill salmonella, so defrosted poultry should be treated in the same way as a fresh bird. Whenever you are working with raw poultry, remember that you may have bacteria on your hands. Once the bird is in the oven, wash your hands, utensils, and work surfaces thoroughly, in hot, soapy water. Cutting boards with porous surfaces should be scrubbed with a stiff bristle brush and disinfectant at least once a week. I recommend disinfecting with a weak bleach solution, mixed with one part liquid bleach to 10 parts water. If you have an automatic dishwasher, you may use it to clean you cutting boards, but do not let wooden boards go through the drying cycle.

We should always be careful in handling food at all times. We would hate to see anyone in the family or circle of friends suffering from food poisoning instead of enjoying the festivities of the season.

Copyright © 2009 Athena Goodlight (11/10/2009 Gomestic)
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