A Quick Skillet Turkey Dinner You’ll Make Over and Over

Bunches of fresh mint and piles of sugar snap peas are still weeks away from showing up at my local farmers’ market, but April’s lengthening days and warming temperatures already have me craving that classic spring pairing. Luckily, they can also be foraged right now at the supermarket down the street.

Usually, I toss my mint and sugar snaps into a big, ebullient salad, but I was more in the mood for something substantial that could be rounded out with a protein. So, I also picked up a package of ground turkey to turn everything into a satisfying and colorful skillet dinner.

Recipe: Spicy Skillet Ground Turkey and Snap Peas

Ground turkey is ideal for all manner of impromptu cooking. Not only is it economical and convenient, it’s also mild and adaptable, a chameleon-like ingredient that blends in wherever you use it. It can anchor almost any skillet meal when you sear it until golden and crisp, especially if you throw in enough vegetables and vivid seasonings to bring out its best.

Still, I wanted a pungent sauce to spark the sweetness of the peas and the easygoing turkey, blazing them out of their quiet complacency. For that, I borrowed some of the zesty, spicy flavors of larb.

Popular in Thailand and Laos, larb is at once crunchy and soft, fiery and cooling. It’s a dish of thrilling contrasts that shift from bite to bite — just the thing to perk up a turkey and snap pea meal.

As the turkey sputtered and crisped in the pan, I mixed together a simple larb-inspired sauce of lime juice, fish sauce and chile flakes, which I drizzled onto the meat once it was browned. Then I added the sugar snaps and covered the pan so they could steam in those savory juices.

Not wanting to add a step to my dinner, I skipped toasting and grinding rice into a powder (which is typical of most larb recipes), and finished the dish instead with some chopped roasted nuts to add richness and crunch. Then I folded in the mint.

In Thailand and Laos, larb is considered a hot-weather dish. But mint and sugar snap peas make this larb-inspired meal perfect for the chilly spring nights that herald their arrival.

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