I’m surprised no one has mentioned using an actual thermometer here. People are notoriously bad at estimating temperatures and most foods need to be reheated to at least 74° C/165° F. Your finger will hurt long before you get to that point.
…during the holiday season, no matter how vigilant you are about following these commandments, sometimes you still need a little help, some extra assurance, a few aces up your sleeve.
So we gathered 52 of our smartest tips—the tricks and techniques picked up from years of experience and experiments but that don’t necessarily fall under the Great Baking Laws—and put them in one place.
I had a similar problem with a recipe not too long ago, incredibly sticky. Instead of wasting a ton of dough into the kitchen sink I thought I’d try nitrile gloves, clean hands to do clean stuff and doughy hands to do doughy stuff. Turns out… the dough won’t stick to nitrile gloves!
Family disagreements at Thanksgiving aren’t limited to politics at the dinner table: if you’ve ever stood in the kitchen arguing with your grandma about whether the turkey is done, you know what we mean. So we asked food safety expert Ben Chapman to settle your most likely disputes.
The US government is now posting warnings advising against cooking the stuffing inside the bird, since the correct cooking time for the turkey is not long enough to ensure that the stuffing is cooked enough to be safe. Stuff the bird after cooking to get that extra flavour boost without the food safety worries because the turkey meat tends to hit the appropriate temperature before the stuffing does.
There’s a similar Chinese analogy, associated with gung fu tea preparation. “Shrimp eyes” is the pre-simmering temparature, with bubbles the size of…shrimp eyes. “Crab eyes” or “fish eyes” is simmering. “Dragon eyes” is a full boil.
Cooking fish may seem a bit intimidating at first — what kind of fish should you buy? How do you keep it from sticking to the pan? — but once you take the plunge, the rewards are delicious. Knowing when the fish is ready takes a little know-how, and we’re here to help.
It can depend on the fish – you can tolerate some translucency, but it does come down to taste with some fish. Especially if it’s a thick cut of fish…
Raw seafood can carry Salmonella just like chicken, but it’s a lot more rare. Seafood of any kind can also have parasites. If the seafood has been thoroughly frozen at some point, that kills off most parasites; but if you bought fresh fish from the market, it’s coming right off the boat. Obviously, just consuming raw fish isn’t all that dangerous since sushi is a thing, but there are a lot of things to take into account when determining seafood safety. This tip practically guarantees it’s safe to eat, if that’s a concern of you have.
Holding a body close to you, it’s easy to appreciate the warmth a human body can generate.
Humans are “warm-blooded” animals. We’re able to effectively maintain a stable internal temperature, even on cold mornings or hot afternoons. This thermo-regulation is a dynamic process that balances heat generation (through metabolism and muscle activity) and heat loss to the environment, in order to maintain core temperatures.
Knives require maintenance, which means knowing the difference between sharpening and honing. So a sharpener and a honing steel should be included. And a cutting board – plastic or wood, the debate continues.
A thermometer should be checked when brand new, and rechecked every six months or so, after you drop or otherwise traumatize it, when you haven’t used it in a while, and whenever you just aren’t sure it’s telling you the truth. You can test a thermometer in boiling water or an ice bath; doing both is not a bad idea either.