Keep Salmonella Out of Your Salmon: Try a Thermapen



Several times over the past few years, Nicki and I have expounded here on BItes about the value of using an instant read thermometer in the home kitchen. I'm a firm believer that in the kitchen, you're either a Mario or an Alton. My girlfriend is definitely the former, adding spices by the pinch and sprinkle and cooking by feel. She makes it work very well.

I'm an Alton, leveling off tablespoons and monitoring temperatures with an AP Chemistry lab precision. That's why i'm a better baker than she is. I don't have the years of experience that allow great chefs to determine when the oil is the perfect frying temp just by looking at the shimmer of the surface. But I do know that 365 degrees works great for me.

It's dangerous to hover over that skillet holding a thermometer until the mercury rises up to optimal temperature, so that's why I love my Thermapen instant read. Its slender probe allows me to check the internal temperature of a steak without punching lots of holes which allow the juices to run out. I know the old trick about comparing the spring back of the surface to the thumb pad of your palm, but that doesn't work when I'm trying to get a Boston Butt to 190 degrees for perfect pulled pork.

If you're interested in channeling your inner Wylie Dufresne, ThermoWorks is having an inventory reduction sale through the end of this month. It probably means there's a newfangled Thermapen model coming out, but I'm perfectly satisfied with the one I have that does one thing exceedingly well. At $79 instead of the regular price of $96, it's a tool you might want to consider for your house. You don't have to buy the pink one.

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