After the Croziers have done everything to ensure the food safety of your turkey, it's your job to make sure that you thaw, prepare, cook and serve it in a safe manner.
Thawing (defrosting) frozen turkey
Frozen turkey must be completely thawed before cooking. The safest method is thawing in the refrigerator. To do this you need to plan ahead.
Strongly recommended: Thawing in the Refrigerator
Leave the turkey in its original wrapping and place it in a deep tray at the bottom of the refrigerator. The tray and its positioning are both important because they eliminate the risk of raw turkey juices escaping and dripping onto other foods. Allow 10 hours per kilogram. A 4.5 kg turkey takes approximately 45 hours (nearly 2 days) to thaw in a standard refrigerator at a temperature of 4 °C.
Use only if time is short: Thawing in cold water
Place turkey in its original wrapping in sink and cover with COLD water. Never use hot water because it creates enough warmth in the turkey to encourage bacterial growth. Change the cold water every half-hour to maintain the cold temperature. Allow 1 hour per kilogram to defrost the turkey. A 4.5 kg turkey will take approximately 5 hours to thaw.
NOT RECOMMENDED: Thawing in the microwave
Microwave ovens do not heat evenly, creating warm patches that may encourage bacterial growth in large items such as turkeys.
Whenever handling raw poultry, it is important to practice both strict personal hygiene and kitchen hygiene.
Wash and thoroughly dry hands before and after handling raw turkey. Example: after handling raw poultry, wash and dry your hands before touching other foods or equipment.
After preparation, wash, sterilise (with boiling water) and dry food preparation equipment such as bench surfaces, chopping board, knives that have been in contact with the raw food. Contamination can occur if cooked food comes into contact with equipment that has been used for raw food.