I had a turkey leg I wanted to finish last night, so I decided to make a variation on a vegetable stew, and just add some shredded turkey meat. Well, I may give up on using whole turkey meat and go back to ground – it’s easy to find and easy to work with.
As I was trying to clean the meat off the bone, I realized turkey has the muscles of a Tour de France bicyclist. There are these wiry tendons and sinew that took forever to get rid off – I don’t have a pair of kitchen pliers and thought it super-disgusting if I used one from my tool box, so I went at it with a sharp steak knife, and before I knew it, I had deconstructed turkey meat lying in a pile in front of me. I wrapped the bones in plastic so I can make a broth later and got to cooking.
For a side, I wanted to do oven-fried sweet potatoes. The more I do research on sweet potatoes, the more I like what I’m finding out: It’s got an amazing amount of vitamin A, and it’s a good source of vitamin C. It’s very low in calories, too. I toss the wedges in egg whites which make for a slightly puffy, crispy coating and I sprinkle a little bit of corn meal for an extra crunch.
The vegetable stew is really a “clean your fridge” kind of recipe, so anything goes – I had some spinach and mushrooms that were in danger of turning, plus some corn – and I had some leeks that needed to be used up.
All in all a very satisfying and healthy meal.
Ingredients for sweet potato wedges:
1 sweet potato, cut into wedges
3 tbl of egg substitute
1 tbl of corn meal
1 tsp of dried Italian herbs
Preheat the oven to 500 degrees F. Line a baking dish with foil and spray with cooking spray. In a bowl toss the wedges of sweet potato and egg substitute until well coated. Sprinkle in the corn meal, Italian herbs and grind fresh pepper. Toss with your hands, until all the wedges are well covered by the mixture. Pour onto the dish in a single layer and put in the oven. Bake for 25 – 30 minutes. Check on your sweet potato after about 20 minutes and if you’re worried that it’s cooking too quickly, lower the heat to about 475 – 450. They’re done when you can slip a knife easily into the thickest part of the wedge. Take out of the oven and let rest. If you want, you can sprinkle some course sea salt – I’m cutting salt out of my diet, so I skip that step.
While your sweet potato is baking, get to working on your stew.
Ingredients for stew:
6 – 8 oz turkey meat, chopped well
1 ear of corn, the kernels removed
1 cup of spinach
1 leek – just the white part
8 oz of chopped mushrooms.
1 tbl of tomato paste
1/2 cup of white wine
2 cups of water
In a large skillet, heat oil over high heat. When the oil gets shimmery add the meat, and let it brown – you’ll be tempted to start stirring right away – the meat will stick to the bottom of the pan if you stir too quickly. After a few minutes – maybe five minutes, you can flip over – there will be some stuck to the bottom – and that’s fine – that’ll create a lovely fond. Cook for another five minutes and remove from the pan. Deglaze the pan with a little bit of the white wine, making sure you scrape the bottom of the pan to release the brown bits. Add the mushrooms and tomato paste and cook, allowing there to be a fond created again – because you’re using so little meat (and it’s turkey which is flavorless), you’ll want the dark, meaty taste of the mushroom to really infuse in the stew. Once there’s a nice dark fond, add the rest of the wine and scrape and cook – it should turn into a dark, brown sludge. Add the leeks and stir continuously, letting the leeks wilt and turn translucent. This will take about 10 minutes. Add the corn and mix and cook some more, adding the water and letting it boil, and reduce to about half. Grind some pepper. Just when you’re about to remove from heat, throw in the spinach and stir, letting the leaves wilt.
Remove from heat and serve with the sweet potato wedges. Oh, and enjoy.