Tip of the day from The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
Give Thanks for your Food Thermometer
The holiday season could also be called "cooking and baking season," and people everywhere are pulling out and dusting off their kitchen gadgets and tools to prepare meals and treats more efficiently. When you dust off your holiday cookie cutters and electric carving knifes, don't forget the most valuable kitchen tool – your food thermometer.
Using a food thermometer to is the only reliable way to ensure the doneness of cooked foods and that food doesn't fall into the "danger zone." The "danger zone" for perishable foods is between 40° and 140° Fahrenheit. Perishable foods are no longer safe to eat if they have been in this danger zone for more than two hours (or one hour in 90° Fahrenheit temperatures or above).
Contrary to popular belief, a food thermometer is not just for meat and poultry. A safe minimum internal temperature must be reached to avoid food poisoning in all of your holiday favorites, from egg dishes and casseroles to baked goods and leftovers.
And remember: Always remember to wash the food thermometer stem thoroughly in hot, soapy water after each use!
For a complete list of the safe minimum internal temperatures of some of your favorite holiday dishes, as well as information on how to properly use a food thermometer, visit www.HomeFoodSafety.org.