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If you are space limited in your frig to thaw out the turkey ahead of time, use a cooler. Make sure the cooler is sterilized, fill with cold water, and pop (plop) the frozen turkey into the water. Store in your cool garage or another cooler location, and it will be out of the way, and ready to go on Turkey day!
If you need to thaw a turkey quickly, put it in the empty dishwasher and run a cycle with water only. Do not run the dry cycle. Repeat. Since the turkey is sealed in plastic, it is protected from contamination. My husband thought of this when our Thanksgiving turkey was still frozen after 2 days in the fridge. I thought he was crazy, but it worked. The turkey was about 18 pounds.
Source: My husband's thinking outside the box.
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I have a problem, I ended up with two turkeys for the holiday. I bought one and got given the other. I am grateful, but the problem is that both of them defrosted. I don't know if it is afe to re-freeze it before I cook it or do I have to cook it first?
Thank you for your help. I have no idea who else to ask.
By Cindi from Portland, OR
I would not refreeze the turkey until after it is cooked. There's a good bit of time you can freeze the meat before it should be disposed. Add a little water to the slices you plan to use and it'll be nice and moist on your sandwich.
Cook the turkey then carve it and freeze it in portion sizes for your family size. You can pull it out of the freezer and make any number of dishes with it.
It must be cooked and then frozen but Google to find out how long is too long after thawed to cook safely.
How do I know when a turkey is not frozen still in the middle?
By Ray from TX
The giblets of the turkey are inside the turkey. Put your hand inside the turkey to remove the giblets and you should be able to tell if it is defrosted.
Look up the correct defrosting time online for the weight of the bird, then leave it for an extra few hours. Then roll up your sleeves, stick your hand inside the cavity and have a feel, it'll be firm because you'll be feeling the ribcage, but it shouldn't feel really cold.
Stick your hand in there! If it's still frozen you'll know!
How long does it take to defrost a 20 lb turkey?
Kathy from Nutley, NJ
Hello! I'm not so familiar with american measures (I just live in Poland. :) ), but from my experience, a turkey- about 3.5 - -4.0 kg, (7-8 lbs.) needs around 6 hours to be defrosted. Usually it's better to left it for all night outside of refrigerator, but in fact, I prefer to buy the turkey just one day before I'll prepare it...
I know - it's really a big difference between our countries, but hope this helps. :)
I would leave it in the refridgerator for like 5 days. I know a 12 pound turkey took 3 days and was still a little frozen when removing giblets. I would say 5 should do it. Besides, if it defrosts in only 4 days one extra day in the fridge will not harm the turkey. Also, if you are in a pinch for time and need to defrost quickly you can place it in a CLEAN sink with water and keep changing out the water frequently. Hope that helps!
I just defrosted my 20 lb turkey for Thanksgiving and I put it still wrapped in my kitchen sink and covered it with cold water. I changed the water every 30 mins. and it only took 2 hours to defrost.
How long is it safe to keep a turkey refrigerated after thawing before cooking?
By Jane T. from Valrico, FL