Christmas is coming and the geese are getting fat. But should cranberry sauce be on the shelf or in the door rack?
Whether you've got a huge American-style fridge freezer or a small integrated one, the temperature in your fridge varies greatly from shelf to shelf. If you're not careful about where you place certain items, your Christmas food could suffer.
Follow our tips and advice to get the most out of your festive fare this year.
Planning ahead can help you avoid making compromises this Christmas that could leave your food unsafe. These quick tips will help:
Now let's take a look at what food should go where on your fridge shelves.
It's tempting to stuff fruit and veg wherever you can find space at this time of year, but the more you can keep in the crisper drawers the better.
These drawers have a slightly different climate and humidity to the rest of the fridge, so they're definitely the best place for your sprouts.
Vegetables tend to like high humidity, so if you have a humidity-controllable crisper drawer, make sure you switch it to the correct setting.
But if you're struggling for space, your parsnips, sprouts and carrots will be fine out of the fridge.
Your turkey, or any meat and fish for that matter, needs to be stored at as close to 0°C as possible (although not colder). This will help to lock in freshness and keep heat-loving bacteria at bay.
So it follows that you should keep it in the coldest part of your fridge. Unless you have a specially designed chiller drawer for meat and fish, which probably wouldn't be big enough for a turkey anyway, the coldest part of your fridge will be the lowest shelf, directly above the fruit and vegetable drawers.
Keep as much of your meat and fish there as possible, even if it means rearranging the position of your shelves.
Any meat and fish that you can't squeeze on to the lowest shelf should go on the next shelf up, as that will be the next coldest. So that's where you'll want to keep your pigs in blankets and pork stuffing.
For all meat and fish, make sure it's not dripping on to any other foods below.
The higher middle shelves are also a good place for sauces, pre-cooked foods and condiments, so think bread sauce and cranberry sauce.
The top shelf and top door rack are where your fridge will be warmest, so use that to your advantage.
It's the perfect place for dairy foods, such as cheese and butter, as they're less perishable than meat and fish. And it will take them less time to come up to room temperature if you want them to soften a bit before eating.
Cream cakes or trifle should also be happy up top, but you can leave Christmas puddings out of the fridge.
Keep your food fresher for longer all year round with these tips.
There are certain things you shouldn't ever put in the fridge, so if you tend to keep them in there you can save some space by taking them out. These include:
If you're really struggling for space, removing bulky bottles and canned drinks will free up a lot of room.
The Met Office forecasts the UK is in for a colder-than-average December this year, so you can get away with storing drinks in a plastic bin or box in a safe place outside as they should stay fairly cold.