The no.1 mistake people make when cooking chicken

So, if you're like 90% of people who love chicken and cook it regularly at home, you rinse the poultry under the sink first. You know, to clean off the germs and get rid of any slime or smell before you stick the chicken in the oven or on the grill. Right?

Well, turns out that if you're in the habit of rinsing raw chicken, you're dead wrong about the germ thing. Washing the poultry only helps spread the bacteria all over the sink and parts of your kitchen, increasing the chance of contamination, according to the latest research from scientists at Drexel University.

Yes, Julia Child can be seen jauntily rinsing chickens in vintage videos from her beloved cooking show, but that's one tip of hers you should never follow. The USDA also advises against chicken-washing. If you want to get rid of any sliminess, it's safer to just pat the chicken dry with a paper towel. And if the poultry smells bad? Start buying your chickens somewhere else.

Check out this video from the Today Show for a scary (and totally convincing!) demo, and tips from Giada de Laurentiis on why you should quit with the washing.

Sure, we adore just about everything Julia Child ever did, but when it comes to handling a raw chicken properly, we've got to give it up for Giada.