I keep a pretty good inventory of the food we have on hand. I have a list of the stuff that's in my pantry and another of things in my freezer and I update both lists regularly.
Sometimes, even though I have my lists to work with, I get stuck in a cooking rut and make the same old stuff over and over again. Then one day, for no particular reason, I'll look at my lists and see something that's different and really quite special.
This is such a meal.
Here are the ingredients I saw when I looked at the list:
- 1-1.54 lb package of frozen boneless, skinless turkey thigh (purchased sometime ago on manager's markdown)
- the last of a bag of frozen shredded parmesan cheese (purchased with a gift certificate during last year's after Christmas markdowns at our grocery store deli)
- A bag of frozen, chopped yellow bell pepper
- 1- 680 ml (23 ounce) tin of tomato sauce
- 2 quarts of homemade turkey stock
- 1 large onion
- a container of mixed short grain brown rice and red cargo rice (When I get down to the bottom of a container of rice and have only a little bit left, I transfer it to another container with other small amounts of rice that have been leftover. This mixture varies constantly, depending upon what we have on hand. If you don't have mixed brown rice, any whole grain rice will do for this recipe.
I thawed the turkey thigh out in the microwave and realized that it was one single, humungous piece of meat. That must've been the granddaddy of all turkeys! Since it was such a "senior" bird, I know I'd need to cook the meat low and slow.
I cut the turkey thigh into four pieces and put them in a 9-inch square baking pan, then chopped the onion.
I scattered half the onion and a good quantity of chopped bell pepper over the turkey thigh pieces and then seasoned it all with granulated garlic, oregano. chopped fresh rosemary, and a generous grind of black pepper.
I poured tomato sauce over the whole lot.
The turkey dish went into a 275F oven.
After the turkey had cooked for about an hour and a half, I put the stock on the stove and brought it to a boil, then added in the rest of the onion and a cup of rice.
I gave the rice a stir, put the lid on it. The rice cooked over medium-low heat until it was tender and about a quarter cup of liquid remained in the bottom of the pot.
There was about a cup and a half of parmesan in the bag from the freezer. I added it all into the rice pot and stirred until the parmesan was melted.
By that time, the turkey thigh was cooked.
I served a scoop of cheesy parmesan brown rice into each of two pasta bowls, placed a piece of turkey thigh on top of each serving of rice, and then ladled tomato sauce over into each dish. It looked festive. The turkey was very tender and tasted wonderful.
There were leftovers from this meal. I used the leftover turkey and sauce to make soup (I'll post the recipe tomorrow), and froze the leftover rice to use another day.