Ahhhh cilantro. The most polarizing herb of them all. Rarely do you hear someone say “OH MY GOD, I HATE ROSEMARY SO MUCH” In fact I’ve never heard anyone say that because to be honest that would be complete insanity. Rosemary on roasted potatoes? I defy you to not love that. Come on. But mention cilantro and you’re probably assaulted with responses ranging from “yummmmm I could eat cilantro on pretty much everything” (me) to “keep it away from me and my children” (Someone who hates cilantro and has kids)
But I love cilantro. And I use it a lot. Including in this little weeknight special from a few days ago. I was trying to get out of my pasta/stir fry/jujubes for dinner every night rut so I branched out a little and went Spanish..? Mexican..? South American..? Or some sort of completely North Americanized version in between. It may not be authentic (deep thought: what IS authentic anymore? Isn’t everything a beautiful mishmash of five other things? isn’t it wonderful if we’re able to bring together a bunch of different influences in perfect harmony?) but it is delicious and satisfying and bone sticking and also pretty good for you….bonus.
As with most things I make you can substitute it for whatever your preferred protein is (maybe seared chicken thighs, or even something as crazy as tofu or black beans for the vegetarians in the house) and whatever veggies you choose but the spirit of it remains the same. One pot. Magic.
2 cups brown rice (I allow about half a cup per person, and then double it because LEFTOVERS!)
4 store bought turkey sausages, casing removed (this is a hilarious process that will make you feel creepy and weird. it’s ok. we’re in it together)
1 cup chopped yellow bell pepper
1 cup chopped red bell pepper
1 jalapeno pepper, chopped (if you’re feeling sassy)
1 small white onion, chopped
5-6 roma tomatoes, chopped and seeds removed
1 tsp garlic, minced
1 green onion, minced
1 cup chopped cilantro
2 tsp cumin
2 tsp chilli pepper
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
½ cup crumbled feta cheese
Salt and pepper
1 ½ cups jarred salsa – I used my same old PC Bean and Corn stand by
Juice of ½ lime
How to make it:
1) Follow the cooking instructions for the brown rice – adding 1 tsp of cumin to the cooking water to flavour it
2) Over a medium heat sauce pan, saute onion and turkey until the turkey is cooked through and the onion becomes translucent – about 6 or 7 minutes. Use your spatula to break up the turkey into bite size pieces as it cooks.
3) Add chopped peppers, jalapeno, tomatoes, garlic, the rest of the cumin, chilli pepper, balsamic and lime juice and stir.
4) Simmer for about 6-7 more minutes, stirring often.
5) Add salsa, stir and cover.
6) Cook for 10 minutes
7)Remove from heat. Add rice, feta cheese, cilantro and salt and pepper to taste.
8) Top with chopped green onion and a few cilantro leaves and serve.