Turkey Laab & Sweet Potato

Turkey Laab & Sweet Potato
It's Thursday and with my other fencing class this evening, I need to feed up after work quickly and have some time to rest beforehand.

Baked sweet potato is fast becoming a favourite, the energy release slow and constant through the evening.

Keeping a regular meal interesting is simply a case of putting the thing you like the most about it with something else each time. I know that sounds kind of "Well, duh!" but often folks miss the obvious, thinking variation comes from bringing something new every time. Just combine and re-combine your favourite elements.

I've made Laab a couple of times now and really enjoyed it. It's a simple Thai/Lao dish of cooked minced meat and flavour - simple.

As mentioned, the other constraint is time ...

After a day at work, the commute home and then the pressure of getting something cooked, eaten, get ready and get back out on the road by seven thirty is a challenge. Yes, I could cook something beforehand just to warm up and yes, I could take something to work to eat at, say, four o'clock, but I like something freshly cooked, so quick & easy is the key.

Seafood works ... so does fine meats, like fillet ... so does turkey mince.

Turkey mince is superb and, without going into every part of the nutritional profile, basically, it's a good, almost pure protein. It cooks quickly and has a great texture without requiring the longer cooking that minced beef does.

So, we need to cook something quickly ... here's 30 minutes.

First, the sweet potato ...

Begin by setting the oven to 220C (425F).

Take a large sweet potato and cut it in half longways ... might as well do two large ones, since there'll be leftovers which will do well for lunch tomorrow. Grease a tray with your favourite paleo fat (goose fat, in my case) and place the sweet potatoes face side down, forking the backs all over.

Let them cook ... they'll be done after about half an hour, retaining some good texture.

Now, the Laab ...

Take a large skillet, some of your favourite paleo fat (since turkey is very lean) and brown off the turkey mince. I used 500g for two and we have sufficient leftovers for lunch, along with another sweet potato half. As you brown the mince, break it up and keep breaking it up until you've got a good ground texture.

Turn the heat down.

Now, flavours: fish sauce, ground coriander, black pepper, chillies and, traditionally, lime juice which I used Yuzu instead. That's it. Done. Easy, eh?

Finally, the salad ...

While sweet potato and this Laab would make a fine meal, some cooling salad flavours are always going to be good.

I went with a few slices of cucumber, shredded into matchsticks, shredded spring onions and a tomato, chopped. Need more fat? Have an avocado, too.

Ready to eat?

Lay the sweet potato onto the plate and push some butter in (optional), spooning the Laab over. Avocadoes around the edge, salad scattered over.

Toppings? We have some Cottage Cheese, too, and a pickled chilli as garnish.

Fuelled up ... time to get out there and stab friends in the chest for the evening ...