Turkey Haleem Recipe {Eid Eats 2018}

turkey haleem
For the last few years I’ve been participating in the annual Eid Eats link-up, sharing recipe ideas for Ramzan and Eid get togethers. Till now, I’ve always done a fusion dessert, but this year I wanted to try my hand at a more traditional Eid recipe.  After a bit of research, I decided to try making haleem – a traditional meat & wheat dish served in a lot of Middle Eastern countries. Of course, since it’s Eid Eats and I always make something fusion, my recipe is for turkey haleem!

Traditionally haleem is made with mutton, beef, or lamb, but I wanted to put a unique and healthy spin on this classic dish so I chose to make it with turkey. Turkey is a quality protein and a nutritional powerhouse. Unlike other meats, the white and dark meat are considered lower in fat. I’m not sure why we aren’t using it in more desi dishes – maybe it’s just a lack familiarity? I’ve started cooking with turkey a lot more over the last year, and it’s quite flavourful, easy to cook, and pairs well with Indian spices. In the case of this haleem, I used bone in turkey (breast & drumstick) to add a meaty flavour to the dish and have bone broth for cooking the actual stew.

turkey haleem

As I was prepping for this recipe, I saw so many different techniques and ingredient lists, I quickly realized that haleem is one of those dishes that everyone’s mom makes just a bit differently. So I asked a few friends for advice, watched a lot of YouTube videos, and created my own homestyle turkey haleem recipe. It’s spicy, warm, and soul satisfying. My kids loved it, and they enjoyed the fun of eating family style around our coffee table, dressed up with desi vibes to match the occasion. I love setting the table for special occasion dinners with a themed look – it just makes things a bit more special! {Scroll to the bottom of the post for a video!}

I hope you’ll try my turkey haleem recipe, it’s totally worth the time investment. If you are having trouble finding turkey in your local grocery store, ask for it! Sometimes they’ll bring a product in if you want to try it.

 

Eid Eats Turkey Haleem

Also, don’t forget to check out all the great entries for the Eid Eats link up with Flour and Spice, Chocolate and Chilies, and Chai and Churos!

turkey haleem

Turkey Haleem Recipe:

turkey haleem

Ingredients:

1 kg turkey pieces bone in (I used breast and leg)
1.5 cups cracked wheat
¾ cup red lentils (masoor dal)
¾ cup yellow split peas (chane ki dal)
¾ cup washed urad lentils
3 tablespoons garlic ginger paste
1 large onion chopped
4 tablespoons ghee
4 tablespoons haleem spice blend: you can either buy this pre-made or blend the following whole spices; coriander, clove, cumin, black cumin, cardamom, black pepper)
red chilli powder to taste (I used 1.5 tablespoons because we like it spicy!)
sale to taste

For garnishing:
cilantro chopped
mint chopped
lemon wedges
chopped chillies
fried onions – these are considered a must by most recipes, but my kids don’t like them, so I skipped them.

 

Method:

  1. Start by washing the lentils and grains and soaking them in lukewarm water for 30 minutes
  2. Poach the turkey pieces in a large pot with cinnamon and black cardamom. Remove after 45-60 minutes and pull meat off the bone. Save the stock!
  3. Combine lentils, wheat, meat pieces, and a few bones in a large pot with ginger garlic paste, onion, ghee, and all the seasonings. Cover with approximately 10 cups of water.
  4. Cook on medium heat for 2 hours, checking regularly so it doesn’t stick. Remove the bones before serving, and puree lightly if desired.

The key I found to turkey haleem is watching it during the final cook time. It can thicken up too much if the stove is on to high and start to stick to the bottom of the pan. Cook it slowly and stir regularly. The consistency is meant to be almost finely pureed. The lentils should melt into the stew and the turkey pieces almost fully melted away except for the occasional bite.

Serve it with all the garnish options and enjoy!

PS: Haleem tastes even better the next day if you simmer it on the stove again for an hour. Twice cooked is the best!

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4 Comments

  1. June 14, 2018 / 4:41 pm

    This looks amazeballs I will have to try this for sure I bet it wont look nearly as gorgeous as yours does!

  2. June 14, 2018 / 8:36 pm

    Looks delicious and it’s so perfect for Eid!

  3. June 14, 2018 / 9:57 pm

    Looks amazing! Just like my moms. 🙂

  4. June 16, 2018 / 5:48 pm

    Haleem is a big favourite in our home! I have yet to make it from scratch and have always used a mix packet. I love to make it in the slow cooker. Love how you changed it up and used turkey! Thank you for participating in Eid Eats and your support through the past years!

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