Cook safe this holiday season

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

NATION – Thanksgiving…let`s face it, it`s all about the food.

And after dinner’s done you want to go shopping at all those blowout sales, not have a blowout of your own.

So we`ve got some tips to keep your meals from coming back to haunt you.

Carol Wolin-Riklin, a UTHealth Dietitian offered some helpful tips:

“With Thanksgiving the biggest the concern is actually the turkey, and it`s so important that people really have a meat thermometer, so that they can check and make sure that not only the turkey, but the stuffing gets to 165 degrees, because you want to kill any bacteria within the meat and poultry.  You don`t want to get sick from E. coli or salmonella

Make sure to keep the prep surfaces clean.

Wolin-Riklin said: “It`s always good to wipe the counters and the surfaces down with hot soapy water after you`ve finished prepping a meal, or if you`ve had cooked food on.”

It`s always nice to bring a dish with you for a meal with friends or family, just make sure to cook it through before taking it over.

Wolin-Riklin said: “You don`t want to take a partially cooked food item and carry it at room temperature, and then reheat it.”

Having a buffet?  don`t leave food out for more than two hours.

Wolin-Riklin Said: “Just put out smaller shallow plates of food and after 2 hours discard the food and put fresh food out.”

ANd let`s not forget one of the big joys of the thanksgiving meal… left overs.

Wolin-Riklin Said: “Leftovers are generally good for about 3 to 4 days.  Meats, poultry and side dishes may not look funny, or smell funny, or have a glossy texture to them, but it doesn`t mean that they`re safe to eat; they can still make you sick.

Just a little bit of prevention will ensure that the only food you see a second time are the left overs.