Sunday, October 2, 2011


No matter how many people you invite, when you make a whole turkey, there will be leftovers.

This is precisely what happened. I had a big tupperware container stuffed with turkey. Never being one for sandwiches, and with a roommate who had made the mistake of going vegan (insert eye roll here), I was forced to be creative.

Luckily, I only had to look to Gourmet (may got rest its soul) for the answers. This "pilaf" is an excellent, excellent lunch or one-dish dinner, but the flavors are totally unexpected. Taking a cue from North Africa and the Mideast, we've got Israeli couscous, cinnamon, allspice, and currants. The yogurt and the proteins (both turkey and chickpeas) balance out the sweet fairly well, but I remember adding lots of salt to this dish.

I'm currently wondering how this might go with chicken or without any meat at all--there seems to be something about the turkey here that just works, though. If I try it, I'll be sure to let you know.

Spiced Couscous and Turkey Pilaf
From Gourmet, November 2008

  • 1/2 cup finely chopped onion
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 cups pearl (Israeli) couscous (10 ounces)
  • 1 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 2 2/3 cups water
  • 1 (19-ounce) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1/4 cup currants
  • 1 1/2 cups (1-inch) pieces cooked turkey
  • 1/3 cup packed mint leaves, chopped

  • Accompaniment: plain yogurt

Cook onion in oil in a 4-quart heavy pot over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until golden, about 10 minutes. Add couscous and spices and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add water, chickpeas, currants, and 1 teaspoon salt and simmer, covered, until couscous is just tender, 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from heat. Stir in turkey and let stand, covered, until heated through, about 5 minutes. Stir in mint.

1 comment:

Jacquie Church Young said...

so looking forward to trying this!