Here’s the thing: It’s fun to eat with your fingers. Skewering puts the fun in food, taking ordinary recipes and sticking it to them (pun intended), along with an assortment of dipping sauces -- because dipping a stick in a sauce is half the fun of eating food on a skewer. It’s a lively presentation inviting interaction, and it’s also a great way to encourage your kids to eat their food, or to feed a crowd with do-ahead cocktail party bites.
These Asian-spiced morsels take the humble, comforting meatball (a consistent crowd-pleaser in its own right) and ramps it up with a sweet and spicy blend of ground turkey, ginger, cilantro and garlic. They are fragrant and addictively good, perfect for entertaining or family food. Paired with a sweet-and-sour chili sauce for dipping or drizzling, they are guaranteed to be gobbled up.
Asian Turkey Meatballs With Chili Sauce
Active Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes, plus chilling time
Yield: Makes about 20 (1 1/2-inch) meatballs
2 pounds lean ground turkey
1/4 cup panko bread crumbs
3 scallions, white parts finely chopped, green parts thinly sliced and reserved for garnish
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 red jalapeno chili pepper, seeded, finely chopped
1/2 cup cilantro leaves, finely chopped
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon finely grated peeled fresh ginger
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 cup unseasoned rice wine vinegar
1/2 cup sugar
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon Sambal Oelek (red chili paste)
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon chopped cilantro leaves
1 tablespoon chopped mint leaves
2 teaspoons minced peeled fresh ginger
Vegetable oil for pan frying
Combine all of the meatball ingredients together in a large bowl and mix without overmixing. Form into 1 1/2-inch balls (wet your hands from time to time to prevent sticking). Arrange on a plate, loosely cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour or up to 6 hours.
Prepare the chili sauce: Combine the vinegar and sugar in a small saucepan over medium heat, stirring frequently until the sugar dissolves. Remove from the heat and stir in the remaining ingredients. Cool to room temperature.
Heat 2 tablespoons vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the meatballs in one layer without overcrowding and flatten slightly. Cook until brown on both sides and thoroughly cooked through the center, 6 to 8 minutes, turning as needed. Transfer to a plate lined with a paper towel. Repeat with the remaining meatballs.
Spear the meatballs with small skewers. Garnish with the green scallions. Serve with the Chili Sauce for dipping or drizzling.
CAPTIONS AND CREDITS