Thanksgiving Safety and Covid

Blog By: Cristina L. Morales, MPH RDN LD

It’s year 2020 and we are in the midst of a pandemic! Moreover, the holidays are just around the corner. If you’re wondering about ways to enjoy the holidays with Covid-19, in the way, you’re not alone. Each year many of us anxiously await time off from work and school and plan for quality time with family and friends. And, the holidays greatly influence cooks and bakers to break out some family recipes and share with all. However, this year the anticipation of making a Thanksgiving meal might be worrisome for many. With the current health threat, some families plan to hibernate through the holidays, while others are stocking kitchens with favorite trimmings for a traditional Thanksgiving feast. What are your holiday plans this year? Are you thinking about ditching Aunt Betty’s secret recipe for store bought pie or plan to host a traditional meal, open to family and friends?

You might be asking if it’s safe to celebrate Thanksgiving family style or safe to deliver plates of Thanksgiving meals to neighbors? Whatever your approach this season, the pandemic continues to challenge us all. Additionally, flu season has arrived. As more Covid-19 cases are claimed, it is apparent there is a great need to remain cautious and stay 6 feet apart. Fortunately, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) offer a set of guidelines to help make this Thanksgiving holiday memorable. Check out the CDC guidelines below. And, continue washing hands, especially before eating, use hand sanitizers and disinfectants, wear a properly fitted face mask, and more importantly practice social distancing. Till next time, stay healthy and be well!

For a delicious side dish, check this out! http://www.eatingwell.com/recipe/250376/healthy-green- bean-casserole/

For a fun spin on desserts this year, go mini!! Baking Guides: How to Make Mini Pies https://sweets.seriouseats.com/2013/11/how-to-make-mini- pies.html

Kitchen tips for making a safer home for you and yours! Be safe and separate:

  • Avoid displaying baked goods on an open tray this season, consider bagging them instead.
  • Be creative. Place desserts and goodies in colorful see through bags, secure with twist ties or tape.
  • To help lessen the chance of mixing bagged treats, lessen sharing, and overeating, label each bag with name of family member or guest. Cool down before bagging:
  • Allow baked goods to cool down before sealing in bags.
  • Cool oven baked pies and cakes away from high traffic areas.
  • Consider baking a day in advance to minimize exposure to crowds
  • Designate one person to pass out sealed goodies to each guest. Or place on table, spaced out.
  •  Or, place sealed baked goods in front of each guest plate before serving. CDC Thanksgiving Guidelines
  • Keep gatherings to a minimum. Consider delivering meals to doorsteps in place of an invite into your home for a sit-down meal
  • For outdoor dining, consider limiting guests to those who live in home or close by
  • Inform your guest prior to a get-together about practicing social distancing indoors and
    outdoors
  • Keep cleaning and disinfecting products close by and use on surfaces touched regularly,
    repeatedly clean as necessary
  • Provide indoor fun in well ventilated areas by opening windows
  • Minimize cooks and bakers in the kitchen, wear mask in kitchen, and avoid cooking or meal
    prepping if not feeling well
  • Keep guests away from kitchen or meal prep areas
  • Allow guest to bring their own beverage and celebration meal.
  • Allow one person to serve all guest and consider using disposable plates and cutlery
    For in-depth information, check out the CDC guidelines here!
    • https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/daily-life-coping/holidays.html
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