How to Make Sure Your Deep-Fried Thanksgiving Turkey Doesn’t Explode

You may question how poorly frying a Thanksgiving turkey could go—especially while standing following to a fryer loaded with four gallons of screaming-warm peanut oil, keeping what you hope is a totally defrosted fowl. The response is genuine undesirable. And there is an exhaustive record of YouTube movies designed by regional fire departments to show it. Thing is, if one thing goes erroneous, it is not undesirable luck. There’s a scientific reason why a deep-fried turkey explodes, catching your yard—or worse—on fire.

It is all about the dissimilarities in density, states Kristine Nolin, an affiliate professor of chemistry at the College of Richmond. The density dissimilarities between oil and drinking water, as perfectly as the dissimilarities in density between drinking water in its stable, liquid, and fuel states can direct to explosive outcomes, Nolin writes in The Conversation, an online, independent news organization.

Why a deep-fried turkey explodes

Uncooked turkeys include about seventy five p.c drinking water. In a frozen turkey, that will become a whole lot of ice. When a frozen turkey is submerged in 350˚cooking oil (substantially hotter than water’s boiling point of 212˚), that ice speedily will become drinking water.

Given that liquid drinking water is denser than oil, it goes to the base of the warm pot where by it absorbs additional warmth and electricity. It is at this point that drinking water turns to steam, expanding its volume by 1,seven-hundred instances. This expanding steam blows the boiling oil out of the pit where by it can hit the open flame and catch fire. Droplets of oil catching on fire then ignite neighboring oil molecules, resulting in a large bang of types.

It is not just deep-fried turkeys. The U.S Fire Administration notes Thanksgiving Working day is when most cooking fires take place. Concerning 2017 and 2019, an common of two,300 residential developing fires happened on the holiday getaway, with an common of five deaths, 25 injuries, and $26 million in house loss.

If you do want to fry a turkey, the U.S. Section of Agriculture (USDA) advises the fowl be thawed totally and you hardly ever go away warm oil unattended. In addition, the Federal Emergency Administration Company (FEMA) states to make confident you place the fryer on degree floor at the very least ten toes away from your property and not under eaves. Never overfill the fryer with oil. And generally keep an all-purpose fire extinguisher close by.


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