Ground turkey has to be one of my favorite meats to work with. It’s lean, takes to spices well, and is relatively inexpensive. We were brainstorming ideas for something that would use ground turkey, potatoes, and onions the other day and were inspired by a classical Indian dish called “Aloo Keema”, made with minced meat (most often chicken, beef, or lamb), potatoes, and Indian spices like garam masala and turmeric. Our ground turkey version was delightful, warmly spicy and satisfying. Made for great leftovers too. Feel free to play around with the spices. If I didn’t have garam masala in my pantry I would have used some curry powder and maybe a little cardamom. Not that that’s a substitution, it’s just that the idea is not to complicate things too much, but to work with what you have, and note that “curry” is broadly defined.
You can easily substitute ground chicken, beef or lamb for the ground turkey. The "curry" part of this recipe is flexible. Use your favorite curry powder, garam masala, or Indian spice mix.
- 3-4 Tbsp vegetable oil
- 1 pound ground turkey (thigh meat if you can get it)
- 1 chopped onion
- 2 chopped garlic cloves
- 1-2 chopped fresh red chiles (optional)
- A 1-inch piece of peeled ginger, grated fine
- 1/2 cup water
- Salt to taste
- 1 Tbsp garam masala (or curry powder)
- 1 teaspoon turmeric
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 1 teaspoon ground coriander
- 2 large Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks
- 2-4 Roma or other plum tomatoes, diced
- 1 cup fresh or frozen peas
- 1/2 cup (loosely packed) chopped cilantro or parsley
1 Heat the vegetable oil over medium-high heat in a large pot with a lid. When the oil is hot, add the ground meat, spreading it out over the pan. Try not to crowd the meat (you may need to cook in batches). Cook the meat without stirring, until it begins to brown.
2 Add the chopped onion and chiles. Stir and sauté for 4-5 minutes, or until the onion begins to color a bit. Sprinkle salt over everything.
3 Add the grated ginger and garlic, mix well and sauté for another 1-2 minutes.
4 Mix in the spices, water, and the potatoes. Stir to combine and cover. Turn the heat down to medium-low and simmer for 15-20 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender.
5 When the potatoes are tender, add the diced tomatoes and peas. Mix well and cover the pot. Cook 2-3 minutes. Add salt, if needed, to taste.
Right before you serve, mix in the chopped cilantro. Serve alone or with flatbread or white rice.