Countdown to Turkey Day: Watch πŸ‘€ for Cross-Contamination

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How is your Thanksgiving prep going? Do you need to catch up on everything we’ve been doing in the countdown so far? We’ve got you covered. Click right here.

Today we are discussing ensuring that your Thanksgiving is memorable for the right reasons. and not for making anyone sick through cross-contamination.

For our purposes, cross-contamination can refer to two different scenarios, transferring either foodborne pathogens or allergens from one surface to another.


How can you reduce cross-contamination in your kitchen?

Let’s start with cooking gluten-free items.

First, if you are cooking for someone with celiac disease, it is crucial to understand that even trace amounts of gluten can make that person quite ill. You cannot approach your effort to prepare a gluten-free meal carelessly.

If possible, make all gluten-free items before making any items containing gluten to prevent the possibility of setting an item on a counter that didn’t get thoroughly cleaned between cooking sessions.

Do not use wooden spoons, bowls, or cutting boards when preparing any gluten-free items, as these items are very porous and can be difficult to fully rid of all traces of gluten. Stick to metal and plastic for gluten-free food prep.

Use separate sponges for cleaning items that have been in contact with gluten-containing items and those without, and use disposable wipes to clean your counters frequently.

What about nut allergies?

If you are cooking for someone with a nut allergy, stay away from wood and ensure all utensils and surfaces have either gone through the dishwasher or been cleaned with HOT soapy water. Hot water helps ensure the oils have been removed from the surface.

Now let’s talk bacteria.

When working with raw poultry or eggs, please use paper towels and not your kitchen towels to wipe up any drips or your hands until you can wash them thoroughly.

Immediately clean any surfaces that have come in contact with the raw poultry or eggs.

Mixing up a bottle of dilute bleach spray can be very helpful before you start your Thanksgiving cooking and is perfect for disinfecting your countertops or sink. You can read all about how to use chlorine bleach safely here. Vinegar is an excellent cleaning tool but let’s not trust it to keep great grandma safe from E. coli. She doesn’t want to remember your Thanksgiving dinner in the hospital. She likes her kidneys and would like them to continue working. Thank you very much.

Previously in the Countdown:

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