Cleaning a Turkey: Tips for Cooking a Turkey

What to Do With Turkey Giblets

Uncooked turkey

As you are about to cook your favorite poultry for the holidays, you soon realize that amongst the numerous steps to follow that are involved in its preparation, cleaning the turkey is a "must"! In fact, unless your guests enjoy eating the giblets, you may need to clean up the internal cavity. After all, even if you would serve them, don't forget the fact that they are wrapped in paper, which may be high in fiber but would not be appreciated by your guests. Keep in mind that cleaning your bird not only involves freeing the cavity of the giblets, but also removing the excess blood and avoiding a bacterial infestation. Cleaning a turkey is a crucial step in order to ensure your feast's success.

 Here's how to clean a turkey.

  1. Remove the giblets! Don't leave the turkey giblets in the internal cavity of the turkey even if you like them, as they are wrapped in paper. You do not want to cook and serve them this way. They  add more cooking time to the turkey, are often undercooked and can become a nest for bacteria if they stay too long in the cavity after the turkey is out of the oven. A better way to prepare them would be to bake them in the oven in a separate container, add them to your stuffing, or cook them in soup or gravy.
  2. Clean the cavity! Put the turkey in a large pan. Pour some cold water to rinse the excess blood out of the cavity. Never use hot or warm water as it will cook the meat, dry it out and invite bacteria for dinner.
  3. Say "No" to bacteria! Add a teaspoon of salt in the cold water as you rinse out the turkey's internal cavity. This will prevent a bacterial infestation, which would make everyone sick. Also, the salt will prevent the meat from drying out by keeping the juices trapped inside the flesh and will also add to the taste.
  4. Drain it all! Drain the salted water out of the internal cavity of the turkey.
  5. Repeat the process! Complete this cleaning process three times in order to ensure that the cavity has been thoroughly and safely cleaned out.

I can assure you that if you follow these steps involved in cleaning a turkey, it will be safely prepared for cooking time, while preventing a bacterial infestation that would make all your loved ones very sick. Let's enjoy a good meal during the holiday season. Have fun with these holiday turkey tips and build great memories!


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