Turkey en Escabeche

Preparation info

  • Makes


    • Difficulty


Appears in

Lighter, Quicker, Better: Cooking for the Way We Eat Today

Lighter, Quicker, Better

By Richard Sax and Marie Simmons

Published 2000

  • About

Cooking en escabeche is an old tradition of lightly pickling in vinegar and spices, often used for fat-rich fish. Here, Gil Martinez Soto, chef at Restaurante Virrey Palafox in El Burgo de Osma, near Madrid, uses the technique for lowfat turkey breast, garnished with colorful vegetables.

This is a terrific dish for a buffet, since it’s prepared in advance and can stand at room temperature.


  • ½ boneless turkey breast, pop-up timer removed if necessary (about pounds)
  • 2 cups red onions, cut into thin lengthwise slices
  • 1 cup reduced-sodium canned chicken broth, fat skimmed
  • ½ cup white wine vinegar, or more to taste
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 6 black peppercorns
  • 4 allspice berries
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 rosemary sprig
  • 1 thyme sprig
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 red (bell) pepper, seeds and stem removed, cut into thin lengthwise slices


    1. Place the turkey breast in a deep skillet or wide shallow saucepan and add 1 cup of the onions, the broth, vinegar, olive oil, peppercorns, allspice berries, bay leaves, rosemary, thyme, and salt. Bring to a simmer over low heat. Cover and cook, turning after 20 minutes, until the turkey is cooked through, about 40 minutes in all.
    2. Transfer the turkey, onions, spices, and herbs to a deep platter and scatter with the strips of red pepper and the remaining uncooked onion. Pour the hot liquid over the top. Let stand at room temperature until cooled. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until chilled.
    3. To serve, lift the turkey from the marinade and remove and discard the skin. Cut the turkey into thin crosswise slices. Arrange the slices on a platter, overlapping them slightly, and top with the onions and peppers. Drizzle some of the sauce over the meat and serve.