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Food Notes: Nov. 14, 2012

Bagels are backCHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Frutcake Bakery, 1599 Washington St. E., has added freshly baked bagels to its menu. Bagels are available in three flavors, onion, multi-seeded and plain.Spacious quarters5 Corners Café, 423 Virginia St. W., has expanded its dining area to accommodate additional diners.Beer & BratsBluegrass Kitchen, 1600 Washington St. E.,  will hold a Bridge Brew Beer Sampling & Nosh Pairing from 5 to 9 p.m. Nov. 20. Four-ounce beer samples will be paired with Germanic style foods such as local bratwurst, devilled eggs and sweet potato/smoked Gouda pierogis. Tickets are $18. Call 304-346-2871.Turkey thaw timesThanksgiving is more than a week away, but it's not too soon to plan the turkey thawing so the bird is ready for safe roasting.Turkeys must be kept at a safe temperature during the big thaw. While frozen, a turkey is safe indefinitely. As soon as it begins to thaw, any bacteria that may have been present before freezing can begin to grow again.  A package of frozen meat or poultry left thawing on the counter more than two hours is not at a safe temperature.Refrigerator thawing requires planning. Allow approximately 24 hours for each 4 to 5 pounds in a refrigerator set at 40 degrees or below. Place the turkey in a container to prevent the juices from dripping on other foods.
A thawed turkey can remain in the refrigerator for one or two days before cooking.Cold water thawing requires less time, but more attention. Allow about 30 minutes per pound. Be sure the turkey is in a leak-proof plastic bag to prevent cross-contamination and to prevent the turkey from absorbing water, resulting in a watery product.Submerge the wrapped turkey in cold tap water. Change the water every 30 minutes until the turkey is thawed. Cook the turkey immediately after it is thawed.Microwave defrosting is the fastest method, but manufacturer's instructions should be followed closely. Plan to cook the bird immediately after thawing because some areas of the food may become warm and begin to cook during microwaving. Holding partially cooked food is not recommended.Source:
Reach Julie Robinson at or 304-348-1230.    
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