Roast Turkey Pav

Roast Turkey Pav

This dish was inspired in equal measures by a cluttered refrigerator on the day after the Thanksgiving, and the pav bhaji of western India — a gloriously spiced mash of vegetables served with buttery, toasted buns. It works beautifully with roast turkey meat, cut into small pieces, though it's ideal for scraps of meat pulled off the turkey carcass after making stock, giving them a second life and infusing them with flavor. Serve the dish with garnishes of cilantro and red onion on the side, allowing people to determine their own ratios, or take control and garnish the whole pan yourself. Either way, don't skip buttering and toasting those rolls.
  • Total:
  • Serves: 4 persons



  1. Step 1

    Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat, then add pulled turkey and let cook until it becomes light brown and crisp in places, stirring occasionally. Season lightly with salt, then scrape meat, and as much of the browned pieces at the bottom of the pan as you can, into a small bowl.
  2. Step 2

    In the same pan, without washing it, add the chopped onion and 1 tablespoon oil, and turn the heat down to medium, scraping up any remaining turkey meat and mixing it into the onions. Sauté until the onion is very soft and translucent, about 5 minutes, then add the garlic, ginger, serrano chile and turmeric and sauté for another 2 minutes. Add turkey, tomatoes, peas and 1/3 cup water, and stir well. When almost all of the liquid has evaporated, and the peas, if using, are tender (about 8 minutes), add garam masala and a generous squeeze of lime juice. Mix well and loosen with a splash of water if the pan is starting to get dry. Simmer for 2 minutes. Taste and adjust with salt and more lime, if needed, then turn off the heat.
  3. Step 3

    Open the rolls and lightly butter them. In a separate pan, over medium heat, place the rolls cut-side down and let them sit untouched until they’re evenly golden brown; flip to lightly brown the other side. Transfer rolls to a plate. Garnish the turkey mixture with chopped cilantro and onion, and serve warm with toasted rolls and remaining lime on the side. (Alternately, transfer the turkey into a serving bowl and serve with onion, cilantro and lime in separate bowls on the side.)