Tuesday, October 11, 2011

turkey 2 bean chili

the weather has been hectic in these parts- 82 one day, then hail the size of quarters the next, then a day full of light showers and then another sunny 76 degree day. mother nature seems to be feeling fickle and hasn't quite made her mind up about which season she favors, but in my head, it is, undoubtedly, fall.

squash is exploding out of every stall at the farmer's market, the nights have a little chill to them and we had to drag the down comforter out of the linen closet and lay it upon our bed.

fall is here.

to me, this means that it is time to dust off my trusty fire engine red dutch oven and get to braising, slow cooking, stewing and soupin'.

i have said this before, and i will say it again (and again)- i am not always great at following recipes and often just cook by instinct and feel. something feels like it needs some fresh thyme or lemon zest or more heat. i taste, and add, and taste, and add and that is generally how i mange to get a decent meal on the table. i've been trying to be more consistent at writing down how much of an ingredient i use (what?!? absolute craziness) so that i am better able to share an actual recipe, with real-deal measurements, with you on this blog.

i think i am getting better at this, but as with everything here in this space, please bear with me. i did use a recipe as a starting point for this chili, and then added and changed what i felt like the chili needed, here and there. so, i added a bottle of beer and cut back on the chicken stock, added 1 1/2 jalapenos for some kick (next time i will add 2!) and tossed in some diced zucchini to boost the veggie to meat + bean ratio. i am happy with the results and it was delicious, but next time, per daniel's request, i will add some cornmeal to thicken the liquid.

he likes a chili he can stand his spoon up in!

this recipe is half of the amount that i actually made. i was cooking some for my parents to eat tonight and to freeze, and some for us to eat and freeze, so my big ol' batch made 12 servings.

holy moly, right???

if you want to put lots in the freezer or give some away, double this recipe. this recipe will make 6-7 servings.

turkey 2 bean chili

1 tablespoon canola oil
1 jalapeno, seeds + stems still in it, diced
1 white onion, chopped
4 large cloves garlic, minced
1 zucchini, diced
4 tablespoons chili powder
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 pound ground turkey
2 15oz cans black, kidney OR pinto beans, drained and rinsed
1 cup chicken broth, fresh or boxed (water would work, too)
1 cup good beer (i used red tail ale)
1 15 oz can diced tomatoes and their juices
2 tablespoons tomato paste
salt and freshly ground black pepper

heat oil in a large (4 quart), saucepan or dutch oven over medium heat. add jalapeno, onion, zucchini, garlic and 1 tsp salt and saute until tender, 6-8 minutes. Add chili powder, cumin and oregano; stir to blend. increase heat to medium high and add turkey; break up with back of spoon and saute until turkey is no longer pink, about 3 minutes. add broth, tomatoes, beer and tomato paste and bring to a boil. add beans, reduce heat and simmer until liquid thickens, stirring occasionally, about 1 hour. season with salt and pepper to taste.

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