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.: 7.23.2009 

Zabet's Cheap Eats #2

Kind of a Jerk



This tasty meat sauce works well over mofongo, rice, fried sweet potatoes, or even in a bread bowl. We're having it over rice, ourselves—gotta keep these eats cheap! This was a bit of an experiment, so take all the spice measurements as estimates and pretty much just work "to taste" for yourself.

Be sure your spices are finely ground, give 'em a go with your mortar and pestle if need be. (Don't tell me you don't have one. That's just barbaric.) Otherwise the end result might be more gritty than you'd prefer.

If you're going to use real cuts of meat, I'd recommend putting all the spices in a little bowl and adding some olive oil to it, then marinate your meat in the oil and spice mixture overnight.

I also sort of wish I had used a stock pot or my gigantic sauté pan for this rather than my frying pan, because once you add all the veg it gets a little tricky to stir.

Ingredients
1 lb ground vegetarian-raised, no-hormones or antibiotics turkey ($3.99)
1 tsp salt
2 tsp fresh ground black pepper
1/4 tsp ground cayenne
1 Tbsp ground allspice
2 tsp ground cloves
2 tsp ground nutmeg
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 clove local, organic garlic, finely minced ($0.08)
2 tsp fresh ginger paste OR dry ground ginger
1 onions, chopped ($0.88)
1 28-ounce can of diced tomatoes ($1.25)
1 organic, local zucchini ($0.84)
2 cups long grain rice ($1.00)

Directions
Knead spices into ground turkey (as if you're making a meatloaf), then brown spiced turkey on medium-high heat. You want those brown bits to form, that's where the flavor is. Don't worry about the turkey cooking all the way through just yet.

Add onions to the pan and sauté until things are nicely brown but not burnt.

Add juice from the can of tomatoes. Stir until until all the brown that has stuck to the bottom of the pan has been lifted. Add the actual tomato bits and the zucchini.

Cover, reduce heat, and simmer for 15 minutes. Remove cover and simmer for a further 10 minutes, or until the liquid has reduced by about 75%.

Cook rice according to directions and serve, topped with meat sauce.

This recipe makes 4 - 6 servings, depending on your sauce:starch ratio of each serving.
Total cost for the whole shebang: $8.04
Total cost per serving: $2.01 - $1.34

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