Weekly Winner:  Terrifically Tangy Thai Turkey

I realize that the words “tangy” and “turkey” are probably best not used together.  It’s generally not a good thing, but stick with me here and you’ll understand.

First off I thought this would be a neat riff on one of my all time favorites, Dan Dan Noodles — only with rice. After all, Dan Dan has the pickled cucumber side and this has a fresh tomato salad on top.  Both have ground turkey and well…. OK so apparently that’s the end of the similarities there.  They are both excellent and while Dan Dan has always been a go-to dish for me, it now has serious competition!  This dish was far better and more complex tasting than its formal name would imply: One Pot Thai Turkey and Rice.  Yawn!  Then again, it actually got me to try the recipe so that’s saying something.  And trust me, you should try this recipe.

The turkey and rice mixture is very comforting and rich, thanks to the coconut milk that you cook the rice in.  The tomato salad topping is incredibly acidic and zesty and pungent thanks to the fish sauce and the large amount of lime juice.  Together, well…. its heaven.  Its one of those combinations that just beg you to over-eat.  Just one more bite.  Well… just a bit more.  You get the idea.

The recipe comes from Martha Stewart Living.  You will definitely want to make this soon, when the tomatoes are at their absolute peak.

One-Pot Thai Turkey and Rice

Serves 4-6

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup fresh lime juice (from 2 limes)
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 3 teaspoons packed light-brown sugar
  • 7 shallots, halved and thinly sliced lengthwise (2 1/4 cups)
  • 1 tablespoon safflower oil
  • 1 pound ground turkey
  • 1 tablespoon minced peeled fresh ginger (from a 2-inch piece)
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 1/4 cups jasmine rice
  • 1 1/4 cups unsweetened full-fat coconut milk
  • 2 long sweet red peppers, thinly sliced (1/3 cup)
  • Coarse salt
  • 16 small tomatoes, cut into wedges (4 cups)
  • 1 cup packed fresh basil leaves, torn if large
  • 1 cup packed fresh cilantro leaves, torn if large Not in my kitchen, just saying!

Procedure:

  1. Combine lime juice, 1 to 2 tablespoons fish sauce, and brown sugar in a bowl; stir until sugar is dissolved, then stir in 1/2 cup shallots.

  2. Heat oil in a large high-sided skillet over medium-high. Add turkey, ginger, garlic, and remaining 1 3/4 cups shallots. Cook, stirring to break up turkey, until browned, about 9 minutes. Add rice; cook, stirring, 1 minute. Add remaining 1 tablespoon fish sauce, scraping up browned bits from bottom of pan.

  3. Add coconut milk, red peppers, 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, and 1 1/4 cups water. Bring to a simmer (do not let boil); cover. Lower heat and gently simmer, stirring occasionally, until rice is tender, about 15 minutes.

  4. Toss tomatoes and herbs with dressing in a large bowl; season with salt. Serve over rice, spooning dressing from bottom of bowl over top.

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