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Turkey Cakes with Spicy Roasted Tomato Salsa

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Serves four.

Yields about 1 cup salsa.

These are great with a salad for lunch. Or you could shape smaller patties and serve them with drinks. For a milder salsa, remove the chile's ribs and seeds before chopping.

For the spice roasted tomato salsa:
  • 3 large plum tomatoes (about 12 oz. total), cored
  • 1 hot red or green chile (like serrano), ribs and seeds included, finely chopped
  • 1 Tbs. chopped fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1 Tbs. fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
For the turkey cakes:
  • 1/2 lb. diced cooked turkey (1/2-inch dice)
  • 2 Tbs. chopped fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1 Tbs. finely chopped chives or finely diced scallion
  • 1 fresh red or green chile (like a serrano or jalapeño), seeded and finely diced 
  • 1 cup fresh breadcrumbs
  • Grated zest of 1 lime
  • 2 Tbs. fresh lime juice
  • 3 Tbs. leftover turkey gravy (or heavy cream)
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 egg, separated
  • 1/4 cup fine cornmeal
  • 1/4 cup olive oil

Make the salsa: Heat the oven to 400°F. Cut the tomatoes in half lengthwise and remove the seeds. Set them cut side down on a foil-lined baking sheet and cook until the skins split and the tomatoes soften, about 10 minutes. Let them cool slightly before removing their skins. Put the skinned tomatoes in the food processor with the remaining ingredients. Process until well blended. Adjust the seasonings and serve alongside the patties.

Make the turkey cakes: Put the diced turkey in a food processor and pulse until very finely chopped. Transfer to a bowl and add the cilantro, chives or scallion, chile, breadcrumbs, lime zest, lime juice, and gravy or cream; mix until well combined. Season with 3/4 tsp. salt and pepper to taste. Mix in the egg yolk.

With wet hands, mold the mixture into eight patties 1/2 inch thick; they should only just hold together. Cover with plastic and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Put a baking sheet in the oven and heat the oven to 350°F. Put the cornmeal in a shallow bowl. Whisk the egg white with 1 tablespoon cold water. Dip the patties into the egg white and then coat with the cornmeal. Heat a large frying pan over medium heat; add the olive oil, and when it's hot, add the patties. Cook on each side until golden, about 2 minutes per side (work in batches if necessary). Transfer the patties to the heated baking sheet in the oven. Bake until heated through, about 5 minutes. Serve with the roasted tomato salsa.

nutrition information (per serving):
Size : per serving using cream; Calories (kcal): 390; Fat (g): 23; Fat Calories (kcal): 210; Saturated Fat (g): 6; Protein (g): 22; Monounsaturated Fat (g): 13; Carbohydrates (g): 26; Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 3; Sodium (mg): 790; Cholesterol (mg): 110; Fiber (g): 3;

Photo: Scott Phillips

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