Turkey mince is one of those things that languishes in my freezer for ages before I find something to do with it. I've made Spag Bol with it before, this peanutty noodle dish and this Korean BBQ dish... yet every time it comes to use some up, I forget everything I've done previously and remain totally stumped for a while. Perhaps it's that turkey mince is a little on the bland side. It doesn't have much in the way of flavour, so going seasoning-crazy is definitely the way forward. But, done right, it can create a tasty, lean meal.
I spotted someone cooking Lamb Keema over on Instagram a while ago (we're talking months - when I say 'languishing in my freezer', I really mean it) and thought it might be a good way to use up my turkey mince. I did some searching and yes - Turkey Keema is definitely a Thing. So I gathered together lots of different recipes, and made my own version. The result was less punchy than I expected - even after I doubled the spice mix - but a subtle, fresh dish that was the perfect end to a warm September day.
(based on this recipe)
450g turkey mince
100g frozen peas
30g fresh coriander
2 carrots, grated
4 medium tomatoes, chopped
1 thumb sized piece of ginger, peeled and finely chopped
1/2 red chilli, deseeded and chopped
2 tbsp sweet chilli sauce
2 tsp sunflower oil
1 tbsp cornflour
3 tsp ground coriander
2 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp garam masala
1 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp cayenne
1/4 cup water
200g basmati rice
Salt and pepper, to taste
Approx 410 calories a serving including rice
1. Pop your rice on to cook according to the package instructions
2. Chop up all your vegetables first - it's just easier that way.
3. In a large frying pan or wok, heat your oil over a medium heat then add the onions, garlic, chilli and ginger and cook for about 5 minute until soft.
4. Add the ground coriander, smoked paprika, garam masala, cumin, cinnamon and cayenne and cook for a few moments, stirring constantly so nothing burns.
5. Add the turkey mince, and stir well until it's brown and crumbled (5 mins or so).
6. Add the carrot, tomatoes, peas and water and season well with salt and pepper. You'll need plenty of salt - I'd recommend a good couple of teaspoons at least.
7. Simmer for about 10 minutes, until most of the liquid is absorbed. Add cornflour to a little water in a glass to create a slurry, then pour that in too to thicken the sauce.
8. Add the sweet chilli sauce and the chopped fresh coriander, and taste to see if you need to add any more seasoning.
9. Serve with rice (I use about 50g per person - feel free to go higher) and pop the leftovers in the fridge for tomorrow.