Summer is here, and because it has been raining so much, I find myself wanting to cook more one-meal dishes. One dish that I like to make is my version of Stovetop Ground Turkey with Pasta. The recipe is similar to Baked Ziti or any ground meat cooked with pasta.
The differences are the spices and of course the ground turkey. I guess because I have not felt a real heat wave yet, and possibly because it gets very chilly at night, a one-meal dish is a solution for a quick dinner. Who wants to stay all the time indoors?
Ground turkey is very flavorful when fresh and dried spices are mixed in. It is almost impossible not to have a delicious meal. This is not your typical meat dish with only salt, pepper, and garlic. One ingredient that is a secret that I’d like to share with you that goes well with ground turkey is allspice.
Allspice is one of the most important ingredients in Caribbean cuisine. It is a spice that is the dried unripe fruit (“berries”) of Pimenta dioica, a mid-canopy tree to the Greater Antilles, southern Mexico and Central America, now cultivated in many warm parts of the world. (Wikipedia, 2013) This spice is so versatile that it is used in desserts as well. Be careful when using because it has a strong flavor.
When buying Ground Turkey is has been advised by the FDA to 1) choose meaningful labels while shopping for turkey; 2) buy turkey labeled “organic” or “no antibiotics,” especially if it also has a “USDA Process Verified” label, which means that the agency has confirmed that the producer is doing what it says; 3) Consider other labels, such as “animal welfare approved” and “certified humane,” which meant that antibiotics were restricted to sick animal only; 4) Be aware that “natural” meat is simply minimally processed, with no artificial ingredients or added color. It can come from an animal that ate antibiotics daily.
If you want to try to make this dish, try not to substitute any of the spices because turkey meat, in general, can be very bland. The meat needs spices, and the ingredients will sure wake up your palette and make the pasta noodles taste wonderful. Enjoy this dish with your favorite pasta noodles.