We just got back from two beautiful days in Moab, Utah. We hiked most of the time and the glory and splendor that is there has no words. If you ever have the opportunity to go you should do so. It is an amazing area–Arches National Park, the Canyonlands, the whole area is just breathtaking. We hadn’t had snow here so we went on the road. Now we’re back and today was spectacular! It snowed in Aspen last night and we skied today. So nice to be back skiing. It was Sunday, and the Giants were in the playoffs. Joel set the DVR and we were gone all day. I had taken out a package of chopped turkey and figured that I would pick up a few things and make this chili that I love. I use a lot of stuff from my pantry and substitute ingredients where necessary (it’s a think-on-your-feet kind of recipe!) I served with shredded cheese and chips, and it was heartwarming and delicious.
I also have to add a little note: I cook a lot and usually make a big mess. Joel always cleans up and he is such a good cleaner upper! Our deal is that I do the cooking and he does the cleaning. I might add that this is a very good deal because I am not so fond of cleaning up the mess I make cooking. Obviously, I try to clean as I go, so as to not be a complete pig about it, but he’s really a good sport about it, in general. Anyway, he asked me to post a picture of some of the mess I left him in the sink.
I also make this as one of my dishes for Super Bowl but usually for Super Bowl I do it in the slow cooker so it stays warm for a long time. I just throw all the ingredients in the slow cooker and simmer away. Tonite I cooked it in my trusty Le Creuset. I often mess around with these ingredients and you can too. For instance, I only had 1 can of White Northern Beans but I had 2 of Pinto so as long as they are white beans it’s okay to use them. I didn’t have Picante sauce in the house, but I had some great salsa, so I used that instead. I made it with turkey but you can use chicken, or eliminate meat altogether and make it vegetarian with vegetable broth instead of chicken broth. It’s chili, which is not a perfect science by any means; so be flexible with ingredients, but make sure to use proportionate amounts.
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 large white onion, chopped
1 green pepper, chopped (I use green for color but be my guest and switch to whatever you have handy or prefer to use)
1 yellow pepper, chopped
1 tablespoon chopped garlic
3 15 oz. cans of White Northern Beans (or any white bean, such as Pinto), drained
7 oz. salsa or Picante sauce (Newman’s own was in pantry but I found a fresh salsa in fridge so I substitured the fresh salsa) they are both fine, use whatever
1 8 oz. can of diced green chiles (I used 2 cans of 4 oz. hot green chiles)
1 8 oz. can of whole kernel corn
1 lb. can diced tomatoes (drained)
1 tbsp. cumin
1 tbsp. Mexican oregano (this is available here in Colorado but may not be everywhere. You can try to find it but if you can’t, regular oregano will have to do…and yes, I know that it looks like pot in my picture.)
Kosher salt to taste (you’ll need a fair amount but salt along the way to your liking, I used a fair amount of salt, but use your own discretion, it’s a big pot of chili
Freshly ground black pepper to taste (if you have white pepper that works as well in this, because it is White Chili)
3 – 4 cups chicken (or vegetable) stock (I start out with 3 and if it is too thick I usually add up to another cup.) I did use 4 at the end, if you’re eating it that night use 3 then before you freeze or refrigerate add another cup to the pot so as to add some more liquid.
12 oz. sour cream (Lite is good. Non-fat is okay, but I don’t love it. Strain first to get rid of that little bit of liquid. You can also use yogurt. Add this ingredient last and blend in well.) Sometimes, I take it out of container and mix it up a bit so it will blend in better.
Shredded cheese (Mexican Style, Jalapeno or Cheddar), for topping. (I let people add this themselves, since some people don’t want the cheese.)
* jalapeno pepper (I love the heat so I dice up a fresh jalapeno, add it to mine, and then leave it in a little bowl for anyone else who may want it.)
Tortilla chips on the side
In a large stockpot (my trusty Le Creuset) melt the butter on a medium heat. Add onion, peppers and garlic and cook until soft. I add the garlic at this point and a little kosher salt.
Puree 1 1/2 cans of the drained beans (Cuisinart food processor is best) until beans are smooth and add to the pot.
Add the rest of the beans, along with the salsa, chiles, corn, tomatoes, and spices (plus anything else you may want to add). Cook for a few more minutes on a low heat, until the ingredients are blended.
Add the stock and bring to a boil. I then lower the heat and simmer for about an hour on the stove top.
Before you’re ready to serve it, add the sour cream and blend well while simmering.
I place the shredded cheese, extra sour cream, chips, fresh-cut up jalapenos, salsa (and sometimes guacamole) in bowls on the side so everyone can make their chili their way.
This is so easy, you can make in the morning, and let it sit all day in fridge. You may want to add liquid at some point when you serve. We ate it that night, and then I put in containers for fridge and freezer. I added the rest of the stock before I froze it. Just add back to pot and stir, and then ladle into containers. Keeps in fridge for at least 3 days. Perfect for freezing, I just take it out of freezer in the morning and by evening it should be defrosted , heat it up and you may need to add some liquid if it is too thick. Those little boxes ( 1 cup size) of broth come in handy here.