Chili was the first meal I ever served to friends at my own apartment, and as such, it has a special place in my heart. In my 20s I was a nervous chef. While there is much more to that story, in that phase of my cooking life I was focused on getting the recipe ‘correct’ and hadn’t yet realized I could invent and play around with ingredients and flavors. I give chili some credit for this transformation after many pots with too many jalapenos or not enough salt, but of course always just the right amount of cheese.
Tonight, I used this recipe and learned some new tricks! My hope was to use up several ingredients that I had left over from the week, as well as some beans I pulled out of the freezer that I had made about a month ago when I had a hankering for black bean burgers. Such a comforting meal as we ease into this first weekend of holiday celebrations!
- 1 medium onion (1.5 cups)
- 1 carrot (3/4 cup)
- Mini sweet peppers (2 cups)
- The original recipe called for bell peppers, but I’d been looking for something fun to cook with these adorable little guys (see picture above).
- Spices: garlic, chili powder, cumin, bay leaf and oregano
- 1 pound of turkey
- 2 cups of stock
- 1.5 tablespoons of tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon of vinegar (I used cider, white was also an option)
- 30 oz of beans
Steps and Notes:
- Heat the oil in a soup pot. Add the onions, carrots, sweet peppers and a bit of salt. Cook for about 6 minutes.
- Add spices
- Garlic (2 teaspoons), cumin (1 teaspoon) chili powder (2 tablespoons)
- Let this cook into the sauteed veggies for 1 minute
- Add the turkey
- Stir with a wooden spoon to break down the turkey as it cooks into small bites
- Cook until there is no more pink meat
- Add 2 cups of stock, the vinegar, 1 bay leaf, oregano and finally the beans
- Bring up to a boil and then down to a simmer.
- Cook with the lid on for 30 minutes then with the lid off for 30 minutes
- After the first 30 minutes I tasted it and added a bit more chili and some more salt
- Serve with cheese and a dollop of greek yogurt. Optional: Cook up some rice or quinoa.