The NFPA reports Thanksgiving as the peak day for home cooking fires. Cooking equipment was involved in half of the fires and injuries. Those statistics are not only addressing ovens and stove tops, but also deep fryers. Deep frying your turkey has become a very popular Thanksgiving trend, yet it can be horribly dangerous if done improperly. If you have decided to experiment with deep frying your Thanksgiving turkey this year, it is very important to take extra precautions. Read our tips below to stay safe this holiday:
Thaw The Turkey First!
This is not the time to start cooking the meat and hope no one realizes you forgot to thaw it first! As the Business Insider explains,
“Oil has a higher boiling point than water. When a frozen turkey is dropped into hot oil, the ice begins to turn to steam. The rapidly expanding steam causes the oil to boil over.”
This begins a chain of reactions which often ends in someone being burned or someone’s house catching on fire. Still think a little expedited cooking can make up for lost time? Watch the NFPA’s live burn video below:
Position the Fryer Carefully
As the video demonstrates, positioning your turkey fryer close to your house puts your home and family in danger. When setting up the fryer, find a location with no flammables nearby, far from any structures, and with nothing hanging over it. A cleanly swept concrete or gravel area that is not under any trees would be ideal.
Do Not Leave the Fryer Unattended
This is no different than our constant advice to stay near the stove top when cooking; it is of the upmost importance that you stay close to your fryer when it is in use! Consider assigning the task of cooking the Thanksgiving turkey to two people, this enables them to keep each other company and allows them to take turns running inside for bathroom breaks or re-dinner snacks. Most importantly, this means one person can always stay near the heat source.
Let Someone Else Fry It
The NFPA strongly discourages the public use of turkey fryers, and suggests that families who prefer the taste of deep fried turkey order one that has been prepared for them by a grocery store or other cooking professional. While you’re at it, you could even order the whole Thanksgiving dinner, pumpkin pie and all, so that no one needs to worry about monitoring cooking equipment and everyone can enjoy their time together.
When it comes to the holidays, we know that many of the memories are created around the dinner table. By following the above tips, you can make sure that this year’s Thanksgiving is a memorable one for all of the right reasons, and not for tragic ones. Happy Thanksgiving!