Nigella’s Korean Keema

Night shift this week. I always try to find something really filling for dinner when I’m on nights.  I try not to eat meals throughout the night, so that I don’t up end up starving around 2am when I’m trying to switch back to a regular sleep schedule.

I found a recipe for Korean Keema in Nigella’s book Kitchen, which unfortunately, is not on her website. I wiki’d Keema to find out that it’s South Asian mince dish often turned into kababs or used as samosa filling. The recipe used a turkey mince and minimal ingredients. It does, however, include one specialty item. A Korean chilli paste, gochujang, which can be difficult to track down. Obviously, I did not locate this at my terrible-horrible-no good-very bad local grocery store, but managed to track it down at the St. Lawrence market.


1 cup Basmati rice

8 oz ground turkey

3-6 green onions ( I prefer more of the onion-y flavour so I go big with them)

1 cup frozen peas

1 tsp vegetable oil

2 tbsp rice wine vinegar

1-2 tbsp chopped cilantro/coriander

For the sauce:

2 tbsp gochujang

1 tbsp honey

1 tbsp rice wine vinegar

2 tbsp soy sauce


I started by prepping and cooking the rice. The whole dish was made in the time it took to cook the rice. While the rice was cooking, I prepared the sauce. Combine all the sauce ingredients in a decent size bowl and toss in the ground turkey. Make sure the meat is well coated and let it sit and marinate for a few minutes.

At this point, Nigella suggests blanching the peas to thaw them. She suggests putting the peas in a colander and running boiling water over them to thaw them. I did this, but if I made this again, I wouldn’t. By the time the dish was ready the peas had been thawed, sautéed and looked that really dull green and lacked flavour. I say, just sauté them in the oil for a little longer before adding the green onions.

So, heat a wok or heavy pan on the stove. When it’s hot, add the oil, peas and then green onion when the peas are looking and feeling a little thawed. After a couple minutes, add the ground turkey, stirring occasionally until cooked. Throw a tbsp of rice wine vinegar and 4 tbsp of water into the bowl that housed the ground turkey. Swirl it around and scrape down any leftover sauce from the sides of the bowl. Pour it over the turkey once cooked and let it simmer until it’s all piping hot. Serve over the rice and add the chopped cilantro.

It was okay. It could have served four people comfortably. Overall, it felt fairly healthy, but was a bit dull despite the strong flavours in the sauce.




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