Turkey & Lentils

Hearty and delicious

I had some leftover cooked turkey breast the other night, from our Easter dinner, and was trying to think of a new way to re-purpose it (besides some Hot Turkey Love inspired by B.N. - long story...)

I went through my pantry and through the crisper drawers and this is what I came up with.  Now, I must say that not all of my kitchen experiments are blog worthy, but sometimes I even amaze myself.  This one turned out great!

Serves 2 (4 if serving with rice)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cooking onion, chopped
1 green pepper, chopped
1 parsnip, peeled. cut into 1" pieces
1 carrot, peeled, cut into 1" pieces
1 sweet potato, peeled, cut into 1" pieces
1 tablespoon curry powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/3 c red lentils
2 cloves of garlic, smashed and chopped
1/2 cup chopped canned tomatoes
2 1/2 cups chicken broth
1 hot pepper, washed (optional)

8 oz cooked turkey breast, cut into 1" cubes
1 cup kale, washed, stem removed, thinly sliced

- Heat a wide saucepan over medium heat, add olive oil
- When oil begins to shimmer, saute onion and peppers with a pinch of salt for about 4 minutes (lower heat if browning too quickly)
- Add the parsnip, carrot, and sweet potato and saute for another 2 minutes
- Add curry powder, cumin, garlic, and red lentils to pot - stir to coat everything with spices for 1 minute
- Add 1/2 teaspoon salt and chicken broth and bring to a low simmer - add the whole hot pepper to the pot
- Simmer for 12 - 14 minutes, until the root vegetables are tender
- Stir in the prepared kale and gently add the cooked turkey
- Heat through another 5 minutes

Red Lentils

My tips:
- Be gentle when stirring in the turkey if you would like to maintain the cubes
- The hot pepper will not add that much heat, but will had some nice flavour
- For a vegetarian version, omit the turkey and replace with a can of chickpeas (replace chicken broth with vegetable broth or water)
- Be sure to taste and adjust seasonings to your liking - I used low sodium broth

I am never really 100% sure how these recipes will turn out.  I have an idea, but this turned out better than expected.  The combination of the sweet (from the vegetables) and the savoury was very good.  I decided to use red lentils because I wanted them to almost dissolve when cooked and add a nice creamy texture to the sauce.  Plus, I never shy away from adding some extra fiber and protein to a dish (and my friends know how much I love legumes!).

We ate the dish as is, however, you could divide up for four people, if you served it over some cooked rice.

Hope you try this cooking experiment.

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