Kheema (or as us, Parsi call it – Kheemo) is a popular Indian mince meat preparation.
Back in India, the recipes and versions of a kheema are unique to each family. Some like it dry served with Indian bread while others prefer it soupy served with rice. This is my mom’s recipe…one of my favorites and always a hit with friends.
The best part, once you have the mince preparation down, there are many interesting ways to make it part of your daily meal (like adding peas or potatoes and serving it with naan/chapattis.)
Any ground meat works with this recipe; I have tried lamb/mutton, chicken & turkey with great success. Plus kheema freezes well for up to 2-3 months; so cook a double batch of it.
Pizza never goes out of style with young kids, so this flatbread version topped with goat cheese is a winner in our family.
Serves 4 (2*10″ flatbread) • Prep Time- 15 minutes • Hands-on cook time- 20 minutes
For the Mince
1 ¼ lb lean turkey mince
1 tablespoon canola oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped
1 ¼ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon black pepper
3 teaspoons ginger garlic paste (or 3 cloves minced garlic/½ inch grated ginger)
1 teaspoon chili paste (optional, available in the ethnic section of grocery stores)
½ teaspoon chili powder
½ teaspoon turmeric powder
½ teaspoon cumin powder
¼ teaspoon garam masala (Indian spice blend)
1 (8 oz can) tomato sauce (or 2 medium tomatoes, blended)
1 ½ teaspoons sugar
¼ cup red cider vinegar
Juice of ½ a lemon
3 tablespoons cilantro (also called coriander leaves)
For the flatbread
2 ready-to-use10 inch thin crust pizza bases (from your local grocer or pizza shop)
Sliced onion and chopped Serrano pepper to top the flatbread (optional)
Juice of ½ a lemon
Goat cheese, hand crumbled (Not a fan of goat cheese? Use fresh mozzarella, diced in ½ inch cubes)
A note on cheese- The best cheese to top any flatbread or pizza is fresh mozzarella, you don’t need much but it just tastes better. However, for this flatbread I tried my favorite goat cheese and it really worked well. The tanginess of the goat cheese compliments the Kheema. In a crunch, use shredded mozzarella.
In a large skillet over a medium flame, heat the canola oil. Add onion and turkey mince, season with salt and pepper. Sweat the onion and mince, about 5 minutes. Stirring intermittently, add ginger garlic paste and chili paste (if using), cook for 3-4 minutes. Introduce the dry spices and let the flavors blend for another 3-4 minutes; by now the meat should be sizzling in the pan. If at any stage the mixture is too dry, just sprinkle some stock or water to the pan.
Pour in the tomato sauce, broth/water and sugar, cover and cook for 5 minutes on a low flame. Add the cider vinegar and cook covered for a couple of minutes. Sprinkle with lemon juice and cilantro.
Preheat the oven to 425F/220C. Lay the ready pizza base on a baking sheet (if you are using a pizza dough ball, stretch out to a very thin crust and pre-cook the base with some olive oil.) Top the flatbread base with warm mince, onion, Serrano pepper and crumbled goat cheese. Cook in the oven for 6-7 minutes. Sprinkle some lemon on the pizza and serve warm with a side of green salad.