It’s hard to complain about a long weekend, even if you’re not in a situation to have the big turkey experience. I’m often not – I’m working, or my friends and family are working, or I’m away, or they are. It’s too much work – at least it is for me – to cook a huge turkey dinner (although it’s one of my favorite meals) for just a couple of people, so I’ve figured out a few ways to get around it and still get a fix of turkey.
I occasionally buy a turkey breast and cook it – but it’s not the same. Because for me, turkey dinner is all about everything EXCEPT the turkey. I love the dressing, the mashed potatoes, the gravy, the mashed carrots and parsnips casserole, the buns and butter, the brussel sprouts. When it’s all over, I give away the leftover turkey and, begrudgingly, some of the vegetables.
But when I don’t cook a whole turkey dinner, I still like to do something with turkey. This is a dish I can make, eat for a couple of days, freeze if I want to – and it’s very good. It’s also cooked in a crockpot, which makes it even better from my way of thinking – anything I can do ahead of time is a bonus for me. Plus it includes two of my favorite ingredients: cilantro and ginger!
Asian Turkey Meatballs
1 pound ground turkey
1/2 cup panko
1/4 cup finely chopped cilantro
1 tbsp finely chopped fresh ginger
3 scallions, white and light-green parts, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 large egg
3 tbsp low-sodium soy sauce
1/4 cup hoisin sauce
1/4 cup plum sauce
1 tbsp rice vinegar
Rice (or rice noodles) – I prefer the rice
1. Combine turkey, panko, cilantro, ginger, scallions, garlic, egg and 1 tbsp soy sauce. Mix gently with your hands. Don’t overmix. Form into 16 balls. (I got this recipe online at myrecipes.com and it said 16, so I make 16 – not one more, and not one less!). Place in slow cooker.
2. Combine remaining 2 tbsp soy sauce, hoisin sauce, plum sauce, and rice vinegar. Pour over meatballs. Cover and cook on low until meatballs are cooked through, 2 1/2 to 3 hours. Serve with rice or noodles.