Pastrami. Horseradish. Matzo. Frying in oil. All the makings of a traditional Jewish holiday meal. But this time, we add turkey, a nod to the first day of Hanukkah falling on Thanksgiving this year.
To keep this lusciously savory dinner on the speedy side, we started with turkey tenderloins. They cook quickly and you don’t need to worry about thawing them as you often do with a whole turkey. We then wrap the tenderloins in pastrami, coat them in matzo and fry them until crisp on the outside, but moist and tender inside.
The breaded pastrami wrap on the turkey adds a great “skin” to the otherwise simple turkey tenderloin. The pickled onions have a subtle bite from the horseradish. Of course, putting this together requires a little more hands-on time than throwing a turkey in the oven, but the reward is in the taste.
Pastrami-wrapped fried turkey with horseradish pickled onions
Start to finish: 1 hour (30 minutes active)
For the pickled onions:
1 cup red wine vinegar
1/2 cup sugar
2 tablespoons pickling spice
2 tablespoons kosher salt
1/2 cup prepared horseradish
2 medium red onions, thinly sliced
For the turkey:
3 pounds turkey tenderloins
8 ounces thinly sliced pastrami
2 tablespoons spicy brown mustard
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups matzo meal
Vegetable oil, for frying
In a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, combine the vinegar, sugar, pickling spice, salt and horseradish. Bring to a boil, then add the onions. Return to a boil, cover and remove from the heat. Let sit until cool. The onions can be prepared up to 2 days in advance. Store in a covered container in the refrigerator.
Wrap each turkey tenderloin in several slices of pastrami, securing them with wooden skewers as needed.
In a wide, shallow bowl, whisk together the eggs, mustard and flour. In a second bowl, spread the matzo meal. One at a time, roll each tenderloin in the egg mixture to coat evenly. Transfer to the matzo meal and roll to coat. The tenderloins can be prepared in this manner up to several hours ahead of time, then covered and refrigerated.
When ready to cook, heat the oven to 350 F.
In a large, deep saute pan, heat 1/2 inch of oil until it sizzles when a matzo crumb is dropped into it. One at a time, fry each tenderloin for 5 to 7 minutes per side, or until golden brown all over. Transfer to a rimmed baking sheet, then repeat with the remaining tenderloins.
When all of the tenderloins are fried, place them in the oven for 25 to 30 minutes, or until they reach 165 F at the center. Serve with the pickled onions on the side.
Nutrition information per serving: 270 calories; 70 calories from fat (26 percent of total calories); 8 g fat (1 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 90 mg cholesterol; 17 g carbohydrate; 1 g fiber; 2 g sugar; 35 g protein; 440 mg sodium.