Thursday, March 18, 2010

March 18th - Turkey and Pinto Bean Chili

After a crazy St. Patty's day, it's nice to just have a mellow day of not doing very much of anything.  I've got some grading and misc. school prep work to do, but I plan on enjoying the nice weather outside with a book (and some chili). 


Onion: $0.35
Red Bell Pepper: $1.29
Garlic: $0.79
Turkey: $5.25
Chili powder, cumin, oregano: had
Pinto beans: $2.97
Diced Tomatoes: $0.99
Chicken broth: $1.89
Chocolate: had

Total: $13.53

I am in absolute love with this chili powder (Merken Mapuche Spice produced by Chileangourmet).  It is from Chile and made from the cacho de cabra (horn of the goat) chili and has a marvelous smoked flavor.  I bought it a while ago at Williams Sonoma, but sadly, they no longer carry it.  So, I've been saving for special recipes (especially chili).  Although I only have maybe a tablespoon and a half left, I decided to pep up this recipe with it. 


SNOBBY CHEF ALERT:  Chili is only as good as the chili powder you put in it.  Yes, that's a snobby chef thing to say, but it's true.  If you buy an inexpensive chili powder in a paper packet, your chili is not going to garner the complex flavors it truly deserves.  Am I proposing to buy a very expensive chili powder that costs $20 for one ounce?  Absolutely not.  I just want you to be aware that not all chili powders are created equal.  And since this is the main flavoring of chili, you may want to be a little more experimental to other varieties than just the run of the mill.  If you're truly daring, you can always make your own!


FAST:  Nope.  Took about an hour and a half to make this from start to finish.  (Plus, chili is always better the next day.  So, if you consider that, this is actually a recipe that takes 1.5 hours + 1 day.)  Prep takes about 10 minutes to chop everything up (if your not constantly interrupted) and cooking will take about an hour and twenty minutes. 

EASY:  Pretty much.  If you have a crappy can opener, opening the cans could be the most difficult part of this recipe.  Otherwise, it's the chopping that'll be the most complicated step.

FRESH:  Yes, it's pretty fresh.  Again, your chili will only be as good as your chili powder.  If it's old and stale, your chili will be dull and unflavorful.  I'd love a dollop of sour cream and maybe a little chopped cilantro.

OVERALL:  It's your typical chili recipe made with ground turkey.  The chocolate darkens the flavor of the chili, but it's not very pronounced.  (No one would be able to distinguish it in the chili unless you told them).  Its a pretty "meh" recipe.  I've had better (and worse).   Not a keeper, sorry Bon Appetit.

Guess what tomorrow is?  It's my favorite time again...cocktail time!  See ya tomorrow!

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