Turkey and Fall Vegetables in a Saffron Broth

Turkey and Fall Vegetables in a Saffron Broth with Couscous

Moroccan spices warm up leftover turkey in this turkey-vegetable braise. Couscous is traditionally served with harissa, a chile sauce. Instead, I use the Indonesian chile paste sambal oelek, which is a good substitute and available in Asian markets, or you can substitute a few shakes of a hot sauce such as Tabasco. This turkey braise recipe is easily doubled.–Jennifer McLagan

LC Super Powers Stew Note

Would you look at the ingredients list for this turkey and veg braise? There’s so much flavor packed in, it’s not just like a party in your mouth, it’s full on Mardi Gras. Not only that, but it’s so chock-full of nourishment that we feel healthier simply for reading it. If any recipe on the site is going to give you super powers, it might just be this one.

Turkey and Fall Vegetables in a Saffron Broth

  • Quick Glance
  • 35 M
  • 1 H, 10 M
  • Serves 4


  • Generous pinch saffron threads
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
  • 3-inch long cinnamon stick
  • 1 fresh hot red chile (like a serrano), cored, seeded, and quartered
  • 3 cups turkey stock, homemade chicken stock or canned chicken broth
  • 1 medium red onion, root end left intact, cut into wedges about 3/4 inch thick at the widest side
  • 2 medium carrots, peeled and cut into 1 1/2-by-3/4-inch sticks
  • 2 medium parsnips, peeled and cut into 1 1/2-by-3/4-inch sticks
  • 1 cup peeled, diced butternut squash (1-inch dice)
  • 2 medium zucchini, cut into 1 1/2-by-3/4-inch sticks
  • 8 ounces plum tomatoes (about 2 large), peeled, seeded, and cut into 1-inch dice
  • One 15-ounce can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 1/2 cups diced cooked turkey (1/2-inch dice)
  • 1/4 cup golden seedless raisins
  • 1/2 cup lightly packed cilantro leaves
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 8 ounces (1 1/4 cups) couscous
  • Sambal oelek (Indonesian chile paste) or store-bought or homemade hot sauce


  • 1. In a dry, small Dutch oven over medium heat, toast the saffron for 1 minute or until fragrant. Stir in the turmeric, cinnamon stick, chile, and stock. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat, cover, and simmer for 10 minutes.
  • 2. Add the onion, carrots, parsnips, and squash. Continue simmering, covered, for 10 minutes. Add the zucchini and tomatoes, cover, and simmer until all the vegetables are just tender, about another 5 minutes. (You may need to raise the heat to return the broth to a simmer.)
  • 3. When the vegetables are tender, stir in the chickpeas, 1/2 teaspoon of salt, the turkey, raisins, and cilantro. Remove the pot from the heat and let sit covered until the last ingredients you added have been heated through, about 5 minutes. Adjust the seasonings if needed.
  • 4. Meanwhile, make the couscous. In a medium saucepan over high heat, bring 1 3/4 cups of water to a boil, along with 1 teaspoon salt and 1 tablespoon of the butter. Stir in the couscous, cover tightly, remove from the heat, and let sit for 5 minutes. Cut the remaining 1 tablespoon of butter into small pieces and scatter them over the couscous. Cover and let sit for 3 minutes. Fluff with a fork.
  • 5. To serve, mound a large spoonful of the couscous into a shallow soup bowl and ladle the turkey, vegetables and saffron broth over it. Serve with the sambal oelek on the side.

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