By Melissa Medina
Everything tastes better when it’s fried… so why not fry your Thanksgiving Day turkey, as opposed to baking it the traditional way! Although fried turkeys are absolutely delicious, they pose a slew of safety concerns. Thousands of fires, deaths, and injuries occur each year due to turkey fryer fires… so here are five helpful safety tips with what you need to know before setting up your fryer.
- Keeping Clevelanders Safe! Never fry a turkey indoors, and make sure that you set up your fryer at least 10 feet away from your home. Do not cook your turkey on your back deck – cooking oil is combustible and if it is heated beyond its cooking temperature, its vapors can ignite. Keep all children and pets away. Be sure to never leave it unattended.
- Even Stevens in Cleveland! Make sure your fryer is on level ground; this will ensure that the oil level is being gauged accurately and that the oil is steady.
- No jive turkeys! Make sure that your turkey is between 10 and 15 pounds because larger birds are more likely to burn on the outside before the inside is fully cooked. Also, be sure that your turkey is completely thawed and dry; this will prevent the oil from bubbling furiously and spilling over.
- How about this Cleveland weather! We all know that Thanksgivings in Cleveland can vary from warm and sunny, to brutally cold and snowy… therefore, please be cognizant of the weather before planning to fry your turkey outdoors because if rain or snow strikes exposed hot cooking oil, the result can lead to property damage and/or serious injury.
- Cleveland Fire Department to the rescue! Be proactive as opposed to reactive; therefore, test your cooking equipment in advance to ensure it is functioning properly. Keep a fire extinguisher nearby at all times in the event the oil ignites. It’s better to be safe than sorry!