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Local News

Turkey Cooking

Do you hear what I hear? That's the sound of turkeys thawing all over Montgomery County. University of Illinois Extension Nutrition and Wellness Educator Lisa Peterson says she's received many calls from cooks needing help with their Thanksgiving dinner. She says one important thing to remember about cooking turkey is to NOT wash it before you cook it.

"Because when you wash them, you're spreading that bacteria and washing the turkey actually doesn't remove the harmful bacteria. If there's harmful bacteria in there, it's going to be on the inside of the turkey, we're not going to be able to wash it off. That's why it's so incredibly important that our turkey reaches about 165 degrees when we're cooking. A lot of them come with those little pop-up tabs, but it's always a good idea to have a food thermometer and go to the innermost part of that turkey thigh."

Peterson says it's also a good idea to check your refrigerator and oven temperatures before the holidays to make sure everything is accurate. More turkey tips can be found on the U of I Extension's website: Turkey for the HolidaysThomack 11/25/15