Agency offers tips for safe holiday food prep

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) — The Kentucky Department for Public Health is wishing you a happy and illness-free holiday season, offering advice on food preparation and storage to avoid foodborne illness.

The agency recommends keeping hot food hot and cold foods cold, meaning 135 degrees Fahrenheit or warmer for warm food and 41 degrees or below for cold items. Anything on a buffet table longer than two hours should be discarded.

Also, be sure to wash your hands before handling food, and keep raw meat, poultry and fish prep on one cutting board and cooked food and salads on another.

Health officials say don’t thaw the turkey or other frozen meat at room temperature, and cook foods to a safe internal temperature.

Store leftovers, including pumpkin pie, in the refrigerator within two hours after cooking. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language, racial slurs or consistent name calling will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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