Tinga de Pavo


Most years I do a traditional roast turkey for Thanksgiving (though I spatchcock/butterfly it to cook it very quickly at high heat). No matter the size of the bird or how many guests we have, we usually have enough turkey left that we get sick of it after the first day of leftovers. Or at least that used to be the case until I started recycling most of it into a down and dirty version of tinga de pavo/pollo. Tinga de pollo is one of the signature dishes at our local Mexican restaurant, El Triunfo, but it’s very easy to make at home. Leftover roast turkey is perfect for this dish which calls for pre-cooked chicken (pollo) or turkey (pavo) breast, shredded and added to a simple sauce made with onions, garlic, tomatoes and chipotle chillies en adobo. Provided you have everything on hand, this is as easy a dish as you can hope to make with leftover turkey.  Continue reading

Kofta “Curry”

Kofta Curry

Beef Kofta Curry

I noted in my #GrapeGate post yesterday that I would have a recipe for turkey koftas today and here it is; or at least here’s a recipe for a kofta “curry” made with turkey. I guess you could serve it at Thanksgiving but frankly I don’t recommend making this with turkey at all (though don’t be surprised if you see this listed as Minnesota’s Thanksgiving dish in the NY Times next year). It’s what I used because ground turkey is what we had in the fridge. It’s much better made with ground goat or lamb or even beef; turkey is much too lean which can result in koftas/meatballs that are too tightly compacted or dry (there’s no bread or milk added to the meat in Indian meatball preps that I know of). I made this with what’s at hand because that’s what home cooks do—if you’re going to go shopping to make this then get fattier meat.

By the way, I put “curry” in quotes up top because it’s kind of a word of convenience. It’s not really used much, if at all, in Indian languages other than English, and even in English Indians usually use it only to refer to dishes with a lot of sauce. In the West, of course, “curry” or “curried” is used more broadly to refer to anything made with vaguely Indian spices. And, by the way, what is referred to as sauce in the West is usually called gravy in Indian English; “sauce” is mostly our word for ketchup. Anyway, on to the recipe! (This time with more pictures.)
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