More Americans have taken up the tradition of deep frying their Thanksgiving turkeys. But deep-fried turkey is just as delicious as it is dangerous. Improper practices can result in horrific burns and fires.
Deep fry your Thanksgiving turkey the safe way by following our advice below.
How to Prep
First, you’ll need the appropriate equipment to get the job done. If cooking a whole turkey, a 30-quart, deep-fryer pot with an insert basket should do the trick.
It’s vital that you cook in a pot large enough for your turkey. A pot too small runs the very real risk of overflowing oil, which can cause burns and fires.
Set up your station outside, at least 20 feet away from the house and other flammable materials. Have handy:
- A cooking thermometer
- Fresh oil
- Steel wire or baker’s twine to truss the turkey
Heat the oil to 360 degrees Fahrenheit. Then, carefully and slowly lower in the prepped turkey.
Remember, buoyancy plays a big role in the deep-frying process. Since solid displaces liquid, it is important to have an exact measurement of how much oil per pound of turkey is necessary. Too much oil, and it’ll overflow; too little oil and your turkey won’t cook properly.
As a general rule of thumb, let the turkey cook for a total of three minutes per pound. Then, let it sit and cool for roughly 15 minutes before carving.
What to Wear
Proper attire is a must when deep frying. To prevent fires and burns, wear:
- Closed-toe shoes.
- Long pants.
- Long-sleeved shirt.
- A heavy pair of oil-resistant, long cooking gloves.
Other Safety Precautions
Safety should be your first priority when deep frying. Take these precautionary steps:
- Keep a fire extinguisher close in case of mishaps.
- Have a first-aid kit handy.
- Write out emergency numbers and keep them nearby.
- Test home fire and smoke detectors to ensure they are working properly.
- Follow proper food preparation safety practices
Planning to take the deep-fried turkey plunge this year? Share your experiences in the comments below.
Image Source: Gunther Hagleitner via Flickr