Wild Turkey Meatballs

INGREDIENTS

For the meatballs

  • 1lb of ground wild turkey breast
  • 1-2 portabello mushrooms
  • 1 medium size carrot
  • 2 stalk of celery, including leaves
  • 1 small yellow onion
  • 1/4 cup of flat leave parsley
  • 1/4 tsp of salt
  • 1/2 tsp of onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp of garlic powder
  • 2tsp of worcestershire sauce
  • 1 cup of flavored bread crumbs
  • 1/4 cup of finely ground cornmeal

Sauce

  • 1 cup of red wine
  • 2 cup of turkey stock
  • 12 oz of thinly sliced crimini or white mushrooms
  • 2 tsp of minced parsley
  • 1 tsp of freshly minced garlic
  • olive oil

INSTRUCTIONS

Wipe any dirt off the portabello mushrooms and trim the stem. Set the stems aside for later. Drizzle olive oil over the entire portabellos, top and bottom. Season them with onion and garlic powder. Salt and pepper (not what’s listed in the ingredients) and set aside to marinade for about 15 minutes.

Put breadcrumbs in a large mixing bowl.

Clean, peel, and coarsely chop the carrot, celery, and yellow onion and put them in a food processor with the parsley, and the stems from the portabellos. Process the ingredients in the food processor until they are finely chopped.

Place the entire mixture into a fine sieve and let the juice drain out for a few minutes. Be sure to place a bowl under the sieve to catch the juices which will be added to the sauce later.

Coat the bottom of a nonstick, heavy bottom frying pan with olive oil. Heat it on medium high and when the oil begins to shimmer, set the portabellos with gills down just until you start to see some juice escaping. Turn the mushrooms so the cap side is now cooking because you want the juice to be trapped inside the cap of the mushroom. Cut them into strips and put them in the food processor. Grind them down until it is like a coarse puree. Save any juices that may have escaped from the mushrooms and add to the bowl with the other collected juices.

To the bread crumbs, add the carrot, celery, onion mixture and incorporated into the bread crumbs. This is important because any excess liquid will be absorbed by the crumbs and will make the meatballs tender and juicy. Next add the turkey and thoroughly mix in. Add the salt, garlic and onion powder. Mix them in. Add the grilled portabello puree and mix thoroughly.

Put the cornmeal in a shallow dish.

To form the meatballs, use a small metal ice cream scoop which has about 1 inch diameter. If you like big meatballs, then use a larger scoop or just form into bigger balls. Scoop the mixture with the scoop and roll it to form a nice ball. Roll the ball in the cornmeal and set aside on a dish. If you are making the entire quantity, it will yield about 55-60 meatballs.

Add all collected juices to the stock and set aside. Using a large deep skillet, coat the bottom with a generous amount of olive oil. Heat on medium, until the oil is hot and carefully add the meatballs one at a time. Brown the meatballs on all sides. It should take a couple of minutes per turn. For larger meatballs, it will take a little longer to brown. Once in a while, pick the entire pot and swirl the meatballs around to ensure that they are not sticking to the bottom of the pot and are browning evenly. Gently push some of the meatballs aside and add the mushrooms to the pan and cook until just wilted. Add the minced parsley and garlic. You will have to move the garlic around so that it doesn’t burn. Turn the heat down to low and add the wine. Pick up the pan and swirl the contents around. The wine will have cooked down almost immediately. You should have a dense slurry of a sauce. Add the mixed stock to the pot and simmer for about 20 minutes. The sauce will be a thick and rich consistancy at this point. The thickening agent is the cornmeal that was used to coat the meatballs.

Serve with rice, pasta, grilled vegetables or another favorite side.

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