Makes 36-40 small meatballs.
1 small onion, peeled, cut into quarters
1 clove garlic, peeled but left whole
3/4 cup roughly chopped mango
2 jalapeño peppers, seeds removed
1/2 tsp cumin
1 Tbsp light brown sugar
1-1/4 lb ground turkey (I use 93% lean)
1 Tbsp mango nectar
1 large egg
1/2 cup plain dry bread crumbs, or more if needed
3/4 tsp kosher salt
3/4 tsp fresh black pepper
Preheat oven to 425°F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with a Silpat (silicone liner) or parchment paper, and set aside.
In a microwave-safe bowl, cook the onion and garlic on high for 1 minute. (If you don't have a microwave, sauté briefly in a teaspoon of olive oil.) Add the onion and garlic to the bowl of a food processor fitted with the metal blade, along with the mango, jalapeño peppers, cumin and brown sugar. Pulse until everything is minced, 8-10 pulses.
Transfer the chopped mango and pepper mixture to a large bowl, and add the remaining ingredients. With your very clean hands, mix everything together (do not overmix). If the mixture seems too wet to hold together, add an additional 2 tablespoons of bread crumbs. Be sure to wash your hands again, so you don't accidentally rub your eyes after they've been in the jalapeño mixture.
Heat a small nonstick frying pan with 1/2 teaspoon of oil over low heat. Form 1 tablespoon of the turkey mixture into a small patty, and sauté until cooked through, 3-4 minutes. Taste, and adjust seasoning if needed with salt and pepper.
When the seasoning is to your liking, place the bowl with the meatball mixture in the refrigerator for 15 minutes. The chilled mixture will be easier to form.
After the mixture has chilled, form the meatballs on the prepared baking sheet. I like to use a disher (an ice cream scoop with a release), to get all of the meatballs the same size.
Bake for 20 minutes, until the meatballs are slightly brown on the outside.
Serve hot, over rice or noodles, or let cool to room temperature and serve as an appetizer. Or, cool completely, and freeze.