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Nov 26, 2008 08:57 AM

Urgent! Food Safety Advice About My Turkey Needed

I have a 8.5 lb Diestel turkey sitting in a huge pot covered in brine. When I put it in the brine last night, it was still frozen solid ( I couldn't get the neck piece out because it had freezed with the body). Therefore, I let it sit in the cold brine and covered in the pot over night. I was going to move to pot into the fridge this mornign before I left for work but I forgot to. Is my turkey ruined now and dangerous to eat? Or do you think it might be still somewhat frozen/cold enough to continue to use. I can go home around lunchtime to move it to the fridge. At that point it will have been in a pot of cold brine at room temp for about 12-14 hrs. BTW, I have no heat on in my home right now either if that makes a difference.
Help! Do I need to go buy a new turkey and start over???

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  1. I would check the temperature of the brine. If it's below 40, that's definitely ok (the turkey cannot be warmer than the brine.) If it's above 40...maybe I will do some math to figure out how long it's been above 40 for you (or someone else on the board, maybe.) It does make a difference what temperature it is in your house.

    Unfortunately, the brine will speed up the defrosting process...(salt lowers the melting point.)

    1. i vote that your turkey is fine! just make sure you do cook it thoroughly.

      1. Your turkey is fine
        On which to dine
        With many glasses of fine fine wine
        After all, no cootie can live in brine

        2 Replies
          1. re: Will Owen

            Thought of em, but they aint no cooties.

        1. I'm not brining my turkey, but when I went out to the garage last week to see how thawed my Li'l Butterball had gotten, I found the Back Fridge's coils completely encased in ice and the interior scarily warm. The plastic had also gotten a tear in it and there was pink water all over the fridge's floor. In a panic, I carried the bird into the house, carefully removed the wrapper and rinsed and dried the thing off. Then I poked the thermometer into the breast - yippee! 26º! So I carefully wrapped it in HD foil, stuck it in the Main Fridge and went out to defrost the other one. Mr. Turkey is out back again - that old turret-top GE holds 30º like magic, so he'll need a good warming up before he's cooked tomorrow.