Monday, January 7, 2008

White Chili

It's hard to think about chili when the temperature has popped up as high as it has today. It feels like it's spring instead of winter but I'm still going to share MY favorite chili recipe.

2 lbs. dried great northern white beans
4 lbs. boneless, skinless chicken breasts*
1 1/2 large onions, diced or chopped
1 (27 oz.) can chopped mild green chili peppers
1 Tbsp. minced garlic
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 gallon chick stock
3/4 Tbsp. ground cumin
1 Tbsp. oregano
1/2 Tbsp cayenne pepper
1 Tbsp. onion salt
1/2 Tbsp. seasoning salt
1 (12 oz) can / bottle beer of your choice

Soak the beans in cold water overnight.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Mix all the spices except garlic together. Wash the chicken, cover with half of the spice mixture. Bake at 350 degrees for about 15 minutes (just enough to sear the spice mix into the chicken).

Heat the oil in a skillet. Saute the onions until translucent. Add chilies, garlic and remaining spices. Saute one minute.

Drain beans and add to pot along with the chicken stock. Add onions, spice mixture and the beer.

Bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer for around 2 hours, until the beans are tender.

Dice the chicken and add to the pot. Simmer for at least 20 minutes.

*you can substitute ground turkey or chicken which allows you to skip having to pre-cook the chicken. If you use the ground turkey or chicken, saute it in with the onions and spices.

This is a wonderful dish for cold winter days. I like to serve it with cheese toast. Sometimes I'll even add some rice and vegetables to the "chili" which I suppose turns it into a stew. I've also substituted 1/4 cup of white wine when beer wasn't handy.

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