Turkey Cigars with Jalapeno Pesto

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Ingredients:

FOR THE TURKEY CIGARS:

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 pound ground turkey
  • 1 small onions (peeled, minced)
  • 2 garlic cloves (peeled, minced)
  • 1/3 cup dried cranberries (roughly chopped)
  • 1/2 cup pine nuts (toasted)
  • 1/2 cup goat cheese (crumbled)
  • 1/4 cup parsley leaves (finely chopped)
  • 6 Phyllo dough sheets
  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter (melted)
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper (to taste)

 

FOR THE JALAPENO PESTO:

  • 6 fresh jalapenos (cored, seeded)
  • 5 fresh serrano chiles (cored, seeded)
  • 6 cloves garlic (peeled, thinly sliced)
  • 1/2 medium red onion (peeled, 1/4-inch dice)
  • 1/2 cup sliced blanched almonds
  • 1 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt (to taste)

 

Method:

For the Turkey Cigars: Preheat oven to 375ºF. Line a baking sheet with parchment and set aside. In a large saute pan over medium-high heat add 3 tablespoons of olive oil and the turkey. Cook until golden brown, about 10 minutes, breaking up with a wooden spoon or a potato masher. Then add the onions, garlic and season well with salt and pepper. Cook until the onions have softened, about 6-8 minutes. Remove mixture from heat and immediately stir in cranberries (they will re-hydrate as the mixture cools. Once cooled, remove mixture to a large bowl then add the pine nuts, goat cheese and parsley. Lay out one sheet of phyllo dough and cut in half widthwise. Brush with melted butter and add some of the turkey mixture in a thin line down the side closest to you. Fold the phyllo over and roll up tightly into a long, thin cigar. Brush with additional butter and place the cigars on the prepared baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining filling and phyllo, totaling 12 cigars. Place in the oven to bake until golden brown, about 10-12 minutes. Leave the cigars whole and serve lined up on a platter with the cilantro pesto dipping sauce. For the Pesto: In the bowl of a food processor add the jalapenos, serranos, garlic, onion, almonds, and olive oil and process until smooth. Season to taste with salt and pepper and serve.

 

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