In the winter months, eating dishes with vibrant greens seems to lighten the mood. The mustard greens in this dish are high in vitamin A and K, as well as iron, zinc, chromium and selenium; healthy elements taken up from the soil.
Whole brown rice noodles also make this dish a bit lighter. Plus, with 1.88 pounds of bone in free-range turkey costing me only $3.50, my wallet did not have to suffer. Buying meat this way is a steal, given how wonderful the bones are for stocks!
Put the turkey in about an hour before cooking, and the rest only takes about 20 minutes.
Pesto Noodles with Mustard Greens and Free Range Turkey:
*2 free-range turkey legs
*1 package Tinkyada fettucini style whole brown rice pasta
*4 Tbsp. basil pesto
*1 bunch fresh mustard greens, washed and chopped
*1 Tbsp butter
*1 large carrot, chopped
*1 clove garlic, minced
*1/3 cup frozen organic peas
*sea salt and pepper
Preheat oven to 375. Line a baking sheet with parchment. Rinse and dry turkey. Place on baking sheet with the chopped carrots. Sprinkle with sea salt and pepper. Bake until cooked through, about 1-1.5 hours. Remove from oven and cool. Chop the roasted carrots into smaller pieces. Set aside. Remove the meat from bones and set aside. Reserve bones for stock.
Bring a large pot of water to a rolling boil. Add brown rice pasta. Cook until just tender about 3 minutes. Strain.
Wilt chopped mustard with the garlic and 1 Tbsp butter in a medium skillet, about 1 minute. Add peas after removing from heat.
Toss pasta with pesto, carrots, mustard greens, peas and the turkey meat. Salt and pepper to taste.
*Note: If you don't have pesto in your freezer, you can skip it and toss noodles with a bit of high quality butter or olive oil, some lemon zest, garlic, salt and pepper. You can also easily leave out the turkey for a vegetarian option.
One more thing....dark turkey meat is a bit more nutrient dense than the white meat options, with higher concentrations of vitamins B6, B12, riboflavin (a water soluble B vitamin that must be replenished daily), iron, zinc, selenium, folate, and thiamine.