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Would You Totally Mess Up Cooking A Thanksgiving Turkey?

Even if you fail, you'll learn a thing or two before the big day.

Let's be honest, cooking a turkey is a LOT of pressure ― nobody wants to serve an undercooked bird at Thanksgiving.

NBC

Lucky for you, we've got a handy quiz that'll prep you for the big day!

Pick the best answer for each question to see if you're ready for roasting. Good luck!

  1. If Thursday comes around and you forgot to thaw your turkey, what's the fastest (and safest) way to defrost it?

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    Correct! 
    Wrong! 

    Although defrosting a turkey in hot water might be the fastest method, it's not safe and shouldn't be attempted.

    According to Butterball, you can defrost turkey in cold water if you're pinched for time (just change the water every 30 minutes to be safe). You can also defrost it in the fridge, but it'll take about 24 hours for every four pounds of turkey. Learn everything you need to know about defrosting your bird here.

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  2. Now that it's defrosted, what temperature should you preheat your oven to for roasting it?

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    Correct! 
    Wrong! 

    According to Butterball, you should be roasting your turkey in a relatively low oven — around 325°F.

    This way, the skin won't brown too quickly, and you won't risk undercooking the thighs. See everything you need to know about oven temperatures and roasting times here.

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  3. Which of these parts should you remove before putting it in the oven?

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    Correct! 
    Wrong! 

    The little bag of turkey odds and ends is called the giblets.

    One of the most common mistakes people make is that they forget to take them out. Most turkeys come with a tiny bag of them tucked into the cavity. Simply take 'em out and discard them, or use them to make giblet gravy. See how to do it here.

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  4. And to get a browned and crispy skin, what should you brush the skin with before roasting?

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    Correct! 
    Wrong! 

    To promote browning of the skin, brush it with oil or butter.

    This will help the skin get nice and brown, and make it deliciously crisp. Check out even more ways to get your skin nice and crispy here.

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  5. What is it called if you decide to tie the legs together with twine?

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    Correct! 
    Wrong! 

    Tying the legs together with twine is called trussing.

    Trussing is not completely necessary, but it helps the turkey hold its shape and cook evenly. Learn how to do it here.

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  6. And what is it called if you brush the skin with its own juices or some other liquid?

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    Correct! 
    Wrong! 

    Brushing turkey with pan juices (or some other liquid) while it cooks is called basting.

    This technique is believed to keep the meat moist as it cooks, but most experts agree that it's not completely necessary. Learn about the pros and cons of basting here.

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  7. What temperature should you cook your turkey to?

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    Correct! 
    Wrong! 

    According to the USDA, turkey should be cooked to a minimum internal temperature of 165°

    This is the same temperature for all poultry items, including chicken.

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  8. And where should you be taking the temperature?

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    Correct! 
    Wrong! 

    When checking the temperature, insert your thermometer in the thickest part of the thigh.

    The breasts cook faster than the thighs, so taking the temperature in the wrong place could result in a turkey that's cooked in some spots, but undercooked in others. Learn how to properly check the temperature of your turkey here.

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  9. As soon as the turkey comes out of the oven, you should do what?

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    Correct! 
    Wrong! 

    Before cutting into a turkey, let it rest for 10–20 minutes.

    This will give the turkey enough time for all the juices to redistribute and keep it moist. Learn more about resting meats here.

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