Stuffed turkey rolls with lentils

    1 hour 55 min

    Tender turkey rolls filled with an apricot stuffing are delicious served on a bed of orange-scented Puy lentils, chestnuts and vegetables. The only accompaniment needed is a crisp leafy salad.

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    Serves: 4 

    • 4 skinless turkey breast steaks, about 500 g (1 lb 2 oz) in total
    • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
    • 1 onion, finely chopped
    • 1 parsnip, cut into 1 cm (½ in) cubes
    • 2 carrots, cut into 1 cm (½ in) cubes
    • 1 tbsp plain flour
    • 600 ml (1 pint) chicken stock, preferably home-made
    • 2 tsp Dijon mustard
    • 1 can whole peeled chestnuts, about 240 g, drained
    • 200 g (7 oz) Puy lentils
    • 2 tsp balsamic vinegar
    • salt and pepper
    • sprigs of fresh flat-leaf parsley to garnish
    • Apricot stuffing
    • 1 onion, finely chopped
    • 75 g (2½ oz) ready-to-eat dried apricots, finely chopped
    • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
    • 75 g (2½ oz) fresh breadcrumbs
    • 3 tbsp chopped parsley
    • 1 egg yolk
    • grated zest and juice of 1 orange

    Prep:40min  ›  Cook:1hr15min  ›  Ready in:1hr55min 

    1. Preheat the oven to 180ºC (350ºF, gas mark 4). One at a time, lay the turkey steaks between 2 pieces of cling film and bat out with a rolling pin into a rectangle measuring about 15 x 12 cm (6 x 5 in).
    2. For the stuffing, put the onion, apricots, garlic, breadcrumbs, parsley, egg yolk, a third of the orange zest and 1 tbsp of the orange juice in a bowl (set the remaining orange zest and juice aside to add to the lentils later). Season the stuffing ingredients to taste and mix well together. Divide this stuffing among the turkey slices and use a fork to spread it over them, pressing it down evenly. Roll up each slice from a narrow edge and secure with wooden cocktail sticks in 2–3 places to keep the roll in shape during cooking.
    3. Heat the oil in a flameproof casserole. Add the turkey rolls and fry over a moderate heat for 5 minutes, turning occasionally to brown them evenly. Use a draining spoon to transfer the rolls from the casserole to a plate.
    4. Add the onion to the casserole and cook for about 5 minutes or until it is softened. Stir in the parsnip and carrots, then sprinkle in the flour and stir until it is evenly distributed. Pour in the stock and stir in the mustard. Add the chestnuts, and bring to the boil, stirring. Replace the turkey rolls in the casserole, cover and transfer to the oven to cook for 1 1/4 hours or until the turkey is tender.
    5. About 30 minutes before the turkey rolls finish cooking, place the lentils in a large saucepan with plenty of cold water to cover. Bring to the boil and cook for about 20 minutes or until the lentils are tender. Drain the lentils and return them to the pan. Add the reserved orange zest and juice, and the vinegar.
    6. Use a draining spoon to transfer the turkey rolls to a board and the vegetables to the pan of lentils. Lightly mix the vegetables into the lentils. Remove the cocktail sticks from the turkey rolls and slice them neatly.
    7. Spoon the lentil mixture and some of the cooking liquid onto warm plates. Arrange the turkey slices on top. Garnish with parsley and serve.

    Some more ideas

    Try ready-to-eat pitted prunes instead of apricots and use quartered baby turnips instead of parsnips. Reduce the stock to 450 ml (15 fl oz) and add 150 ml (5 fl oz) red wine. Omit the lentils and serve the turkey rolls and vegetables with mashed potato. * For an Italian-style stuffing, use chopped sun-dried tomatoes instead of apricots, and 3 tbsp chopped fresh basil or 1 tsp pesto instead of parsley. Use a whole egg, beaten, rather than an egg yolk. After stuffing and shaping the turkey rolls, wrap 1 slice of pancetta or Parma ham around each before browning as in the main recipe. Omit the parsnips and carrots and instead add 1 seeded and finely chopped red pepper and 3 chopped celery sticks.

    Plus points

    Puy lentils are a good source of soluble fibre and a useful source of iron. Vitamin C in the orange juice helps the body to absorb the iron. * Parsnips provide potassium and some of the B vitamins, including B1 and folate.

    Each serving provides

    B6, B12, copper, iron, phosphorus * A, B1, C, folate, niacin, potassium, zinc * B2, calcium

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