Sunday, February 1, 2009
I just realized I have basically everything I need to make chili without leaving the house*. This is great news. I can throw myself a little Super Bowl party. This chili "recipe" never disappoints. It's probably the recipe I have been asked for the most. I don't really follow a recipe when I make this – it just sort of gets thrown together.
2 Tbs Olive oil
1 large yellow onion – diced
1# (or more) ground turkey
1# (or less/more) spicy sausage
(Use just the turkey – or add some sausage. I have been using sausages a lot more lately. I'll use a couple and freeze the rest so I always have a few links around. Turkey sausage is good. Just remove the casings and separate into pieces. You could pretty much substitute any kind of meat for this. Ground beef would work too, but so would some cubed steak, shredded chicken, even pork. Be creative. More makes more).
1-2 poblano pepper – seeded, diced
1-3 jalepeno pepper – seeded, diced
1-3 bell peppers – seeded, diced
1-2 banana pepper – seeded, diced
(I like an assortment of peppers for colors and spice. Any combination of the above works. You can leave any of these out. More people, more peppers. Today I have a wilted jalepeno and green, yellow and orange bell peppers. I don't have any with the kick, but I'm not making a special trip for it. I typically remove the seeds, but use them from the jalepeno, poblano and banana for added spice).
1 can corn
1 can dark red kidney beans
1 can black beans
(You don't have to use all of these. Today I am skipping the black beans but only because I only have 2 cans of tomatoes).
2 cans chili ready diced tomatoes
1 can tomato sauce
(I like Red Gold, but basically just because the packaging pleases me. I will also do Organics. Sometimes, I'll add a 4th can of stewed tomatoes, the sauce, whatever. Today I only have one of each so I'm only using 2. Obviously, if you have more people, add more cans).
1 tsp Baking soda
1-2 Tbs Cocoa
1-2 Tbs Brown sugar
1 tsp Cumin
1 tsp Cayenne pepper
1 tsp Chili powder
1-2 tsp Salt
1 Package Chili Mix Seasoning
(Baking soda is key. You sprinkle a little bit (? teaspoon) into the chili and it bubbles like crazy releasing gas. Don't put too much. Overdoing it makes it SUPER salty. If you're afraid of screwing it up, do 1/4 teaspoonfulls at a time and taste it in between. It's like a little science experiment. These amounts are estimages. I really eyeball and taste when adding the seasoning. This chili can sit cooking on the stove all day, so add the above Table- and tea-spoon at a time and sample. Add more of what you like. Skip the package if you want, you're basically putting everything in it already. Or use it. I don't favor a brand, I tend to go for "Medium" heat).
Heat oil in large pot or dutch oven. Add onions and cook about 5 min. Add turkey and sausage and cook through, stirring occasionally. The flame should be low, contents simmering. When the meat is cooked, add peppers and a pinch or two of salt. I like to do this one variety at a time, stirring the items together and cooking for 5-15 minutes between adds, but you can probably put them all in at the same time and then just stir occasionally while they cook and soften up. Then I add the beans and corn, including any liquid in the cans. Cook and stir for a while. Mix in the tomatoes. Cook for a while.
Once everthing has combined and cooked together for a while, sprinkle the baking soda into the pot and stir. It will bubble and react for a while. Keep stirring and it will eventually stop. Next add the cocoa, brown sugar and other spices, including the packet.
This can cook for a while or be eaten right away. Add sour cream, cheese and onions on top if you like. It freezes well and you can also add cooked macaroni for a twist.
*I lied. I thought I had at least two green peppers but I was wrong. Going out to get an extra can of diced tomatos, poblano and jalepeno peppers, and dishwasher detergent.
** They did not have any poblanos so I grabbed two cubanelle instead. I had never heard of this pepper.
Cabanelle Pepper – A long slender banana-shaped pepper that is considered to be a sweet pepper, despite having a mild to moderate spicy heat. Ranging in color from green to yellow or red, this pepper has a glossy outer skin that is smooth and firm in texture. Also known as Italian frying pepper, this pepper is mildly hot and very similar to an Anaheim pepper. Cabanelle peppers are often used in casseroles, salads, pizzas, and as a pepper to be stuffed with a savory filling.