Although Thanksgiving usually gets overshadowed by the holidays surrounding it (i.e., Halloween and Christmas), the fact is that it’s still one of the most important days of the year. Celebrating with family around the dinner table is an excellent way to give thanks for the season, and the food you prepare will be integral to your festivities.
In Knoxville, one of the most popular recent trends has been to deep-fry the turkey. While there are many different ways to prepare this succulent bird, frying has become a ritual, all thanks to the crispy, tender results it offers.
Unfortunately, though, this process is not that simple. In fact, many people get injured when trying to deep-fry their turkeys every year, so we at Bob Johnson Insurance want you to stay safe this holiday season.
So, with that in mind, here are five tips to follow.
#1 Create a Safe Space for Cooking
If you’ve never deep-fried a turkey before, you should know that you need a lot of clearance. It is very important that your deep fryer is placed a good distance from your house and anything flammable. Since you have to heat so much oil, you need space to allow the heat to dissipate. Also, you want to be careful of any spatter that may come from the fryer. Ideally, you’ll have about 10 feet of clearance or more, and the ground will be flat to avoid tipping.
#2 Use a Smaller Bird that is Thawed
While it may be tempting to fry a 30-pound turkey, the fact is that it can be too much meat to handle. If it’s your first time, you want to start small so that you don’t create a dangerous situation. Typically, about 12 pounds should be ideal.
In addition, be sure that your turkey is completely thawed. Wonder why? Check back here tomorrow for a video!
#3 Use Less Oil
One reason why deep-frying can be so hazardous is that you have to heat the oil to a high temperature. When deep frying, the oil can erupt into flames for several reasons if you’re not careful. Research the smoke point of different oils and use one that won’t get close to burning.
To test how much oil you need, put the turkey in your fryer and fill it with water until the whole bird is covered. Also, be sure to dry it out completely afterward, as water and fryer oil can create even more of a hazard.
#4 Be Cautious With Every Step
Typically speaking, when you put the bird into the oil is when the situation can go south. So, make sure that you have more than enough clearance, and move carefully when dropping it in. Also, pulling it out can be tricky, so it helps to practice that as well. Wear protective clothing so that hot oil splatter won’t burn your skin or eyes.
Check back here tomorrow for a video about why you should never deep-fry a frozen turkey!
#5 Be Prepared for Anything
Should the worst happen (your fryer tips over, the oil catches fire, etc.), you want to be ready. While we hope that nothing bad occurs, it’s better to be prepared than to be caught off-guard. As stated previously, position your fryer away from the house in an area that is free from anything flammable. Keep a fire extinguisher handy (one designed for oil fires), and keep the area around the fryer as clean and empty as possible. Also, be ready to call the fire department if necessary.
Frying a turkey can be a delicious way to spend the holiday, but don’t forget that safety is always a priority! At Bob Johnson Insurance, we’re committed to helping you and your family stay safe this season.