Preventing holiday-related illnesses | Athol-Thurman

Preventing holiday-related illnesses

The Thanksgiving holiday is just around the corner and here are a few tips to keep your family safe. The USDA has a toll-free Meat & Poultry Hotline which will be staffed with food safety specialists on Thanksgiving Day from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. to answer callers’ turkey questions. The number is (888) 674-6854 or you may email them at mphotline.fsis@usda.gov.

During the holidays, people are busy and can sometimes forget that unsafe handling and cooking can lead to food-borne illness.

For food safety questions year round, people may talk with a food safety specialist, in English or Spanish, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on weekdays.

It is also recommended that you plan ahead to ease the countdown tension for your Thanksgiving meal.

A favorite recipe at our home for Thanksgiving dinner is Rice and Almond Stuffing. You will need 1/2 cup slivered almonds, 3 tablespoons butter, 1 medium tart red apple — cored and diced, 1/2 cup chopped onion, 1/2 cup chopped celery, 1/2 teaspoon poultry seasoning, 1/4 teaspoon thyme, 1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper, 2 cups cooked brown rice, plus 1 cup wild rice– cooked in 6 cups chicken or vegetable broth.

Start out by cooking your rice mixture and set aside; cook almonds in butter in large skillet over medium-high heat until golden brown. Add apple, onion, celery, poultry seasoning, thyme and pepper; continue to cook until vegetables are tender crisp. Stir in rice; cook until thoroughly heated. You can stuff the bird with this concoction or serve it as a covered side-dish baked at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

Over the fence

It’s almost that time of year again, when some residents go inside and don’t return until spring. This dilemma can only be characterized as Thurman hibernation, if you will. Please remember to drop in on your neighbors to see if they are lonely or need anything.

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